11/15 Matthew 6:1

1 "Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.

Righteousness refers to all godly qualities that we can express, from genuine worship to serving others in Jesus' name. But if acts of righteousness are done from an impure heart, they are not really righteous acts. There is a temptation to do good things while people are watching so that they will think you are special. We naturally love to hear those encouraging words that tell us how generous or godly we are. Be appreciative, but give the glory to God.

Jesus warned that when we fast or pray those times should be between us and God. If we practice our prayer to impress people, we've missed the whole purpose of prayer. If we can't wait to tell someone how long we have been fasting, we are fasting for the wrong reason. If we give to have a bronze plaque commemorate our gift, we have given for our own glory and not God's.

That which is done at the leading of the Holy Spirit and causes some sacrifice on your part should be between God and you alone. Then God will reward you for your service that came from a heart of love for Him. We shouldn't obey and serve to get His rewards, but He delights to reward us when we have given to Him out of sincere love for Him.

Remember: As much as is possible and practical, let your sacrifices for God be a private matter that is just between you and your Savior.