Going Beyond Good Intentions


Most of us along the way have heard the old saying that “The road to hell is paved with Good Intentions.” I know I certainly heard it a lot where I grew up, especially if my intentions and actions didn’t match in a positive way. Well, this Sunday the gospel lesson is a reminder of the need to be “Going Beyond Good Intentions.” It’s a familiar parable of Jesus from Matthew 21, where two sons are instructed by their father to go into the vineyard and work. One said, “Yes, he will go but doesn’t.” The other one said, “No, he wouldn’t go but changed his mind and went.” Jesus asked, “which of the two obeyed his father?”

I guess, like most folks, I can identify with both of the sons in the Gospel text for I have been both boys that Jesus is talking about. I have been the disobedient one who repents and I have also been the verbally obedient one who never had any intention of compliance. So this story is a great reminder that, although words are very important, our actions in support of our words is what really matters, for they demonstrate if we are truly committed to “Going Beyond Good Intentions.”

I think that one of the least talked about of Jesus disciples best demonstrated the lasting importance of “Going Beyond Good Intentions.” Every time he is mentioned in the Bible, he’s introducing someone to Jesus! First we see him bringing his brother Simon to the Lord. Next he’s escorting a young lad to the Savior who miraculously used the boy’s simple lunch to feed a multitude. Finally, we find him directing a group of seeking Greeks to Jesus. These are the actions of one who doesn’t just have the intention of bringing folks to Jesus; he goes beyond the good intentions of doing so and actually does it.

You may have had good intentions of inviting a friend to church, telling someone about the Health Fair Screening this Sunday at Covenant, or participating in the AIDS walk this Sunday. They are all good intentions; but how about “Going Beyond Good Intentions” and doing it this week. Be like Andrew and direct a friend or acquaintance to your church and Christ this week. Tell someone who might not have insurance about the “Health Fair” this Sunday. Go, help staff the Covenant booth and participate in the worthwhile community event called “AIDS Walk” on Sunday. After all, God has called us to “go beyond good intentions” and to make an impact on our community.

So, “go beyond the good intentions” of coming to church this week and do it! Join us in worship as I will be preaching a sermon called “Going Beyond Good Intentions” based on Matthew 21:28-32.


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