How we act and what we do according to our intentions is all very apparent to our Lord, who is in heaven. Our Lord and Heavenly Father knows each of our hearts. He knows when we are sincere and when we are not. Jesus knows when we intend to do something selflessly or for our own selfish gain. Consider the ‘good deeds’ that you do. Are these deeds intended for someone else, or for you?
In Matthew 6:1-18, our Lord says to “Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to he seen of them; otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.”
This passage essentially depicts how we should give in terms of doing ‘good’ towards others. When we give money to the poor, and we do this in front of others, it means nothing. What is the point of doing something decent for another person, if you are gaining attention and gratification for doing that action? What good is that act when it stops being selfless and ends up building our ego instead?
Then in Matthew 6:2-4, Jesus continues to say, “Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But when thou doest alms let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth, that thine alms may be in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.”
The act of giving should be relatively selfless in some sense. Although, giving can offer good feelings that one has given, in the hearts of he or she who gives. That is a good thing. However, others only give in the eyes of men. This implies that some of us may give in order to receive that validation from other people. Validation from men is not what we should be after. We should give so we can please our Lord Jesus, not our fellow humans.
Ensure that you give with your heart and not your pocket. If you give money, the way almsgiving implies, do it in secret. Good deeds, acts of kindness are things between you, God, and the person who receives. Giving to the poor is a worthless act if you go bragging about doing it. Taking someone into your home to live because he or she is homeless is not something to advertise. Such deeds should be handled with care. Give them to God and allow Him to gain the glory from the deed, not others. Allow God to reward you, not your fellow man.
Leave all you kind acts to the eyes of God and nobody else. We should not do kind things in order to receive anything. The only thing we should hope for is that we are pleasing God. This is the only hope and the only thing we would want to receive. We should do things knowing that it is something God would want us to do.