Going the Extra Mile
by Judy Webb
"If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you." (Matthew 5:41-42)
Christians are to be eager and enthusiastic in dreaming up ways to do good for others. We are to not just do good when the opportunity comes to us, but we are to think hard about ways we can proactively serve people. This is called proactive Christianity. "Prepare your minds for action." (1 Peter 1:13)
To be proactive is to act the way God commands in any situation. Prepared Christians are ready to act. Proactive Christianity, sometimes thought of as the gospel of the second mile, is going the extra mile to help or serve someone who needs us. Do the right thing, even if it costs you your life or reputation. Live generously and practice the servant life.
Queen Esther, a Jew, had to make a profound choice in order to save her people. This choice could have cost her life, and she feared the action needed could do more harm than good. At first she responded reactively, allowing her feelings to make her choices. But then she asked everyone around her to pray and fast and she boldly approached the king. She told her followers who feared for her life, “If I perish, I perish!” (Esther 4:16)
Christians should be eager and enthusiastic in dreaming up ways to do good to others. Find a need and fill it, some say, is a way to be proactive. We are to act the way God commands in all situations. “Open your hand and give freely.” (Deuteronomy 15:8)
Dear Jesus, show us how to live a proactive Christian life, always ready to help anyway we can. Give us eyes to recognize a need in our neighbor and reach out to help every time.