Q. If someone does a good deed for an organization or individual, is it wrong to ask for personal recognition?
—Kenny Welborn, Vidor, Texas
A. While Jesus warns sternly against making a show of prayer or almsgiving, he also says, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 5:16). The difference is in who gets the glory.
It is good for a person to be rewarded for his works, because that sets a shining example for others to follow, and encourages all not to grow "weary in well-doing." Still, God must get the ultimate praise.
A century ago in London, there were two remarkable preachers. If you passed by the church of the first on Sunday afternoon you would hear people on the steps saying, "What a wonderful preacher!" But if you passed the other church you would hear people saying, "What a wonderful God!"
While it's appropriate to give praise to individuals for the good they do, we should always be mindful of the real Author of all good things.
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