Because I Can

Years ago there was a scandal involving a public figure.  After everything became public and had been tossed back and forth several times, the offender, having had time to reflect upon their offense, admitted that they did it for the lowest of reasons— because I could.

I think they were saying something about power and the abuse of it.  They were saying there was no real rationale behind their actions.  Opportunity and ability knocked on the door and were invited in without any questions.  No attempt was made to gauge the goodness of the impulse. Because of this, I’ve heard it said that because I can is never a good reason to do anything. I think that not only overstates the case, it overlooks something important and lovely.  For although BIC involves a misuse of power when employed in a selfish way, it is transformed into something quite fine when it becomes a reason for helping others. Have you ever helped a stranger?  Why did you do it?  For a few, the answer might be that they’ve been in a similar situation and remembered what it was like. But a lot of people wouldn’t get that far, they simply helped because they could.  In other words, they didn’t think about it, they just did it.

And that’s where the beauty comes in. To do something for someone for no other reason than because you can—well, that’s a noble, God-honoring use of power.  It also says something about to doer of the deed.  It says that doing good is part of their nature.  We all know people like this.  They don’t need a truckload of reasons before they respond, all they have to know is that there’s a need and they’re instantly involved.  And if it’s an enslaving to practice BIC in a selfish way, it’s positively liberating when it is done to serve others. It is the exercise of good will, which is the essence of love. It is using your blessings to bless others.

I’m not suggesting here that we’re to always go around mindlessly doing good. There are times when love needs to be discerning.  For example, indiscriminately handing out money to people because you can is not always a good thing to do for everyone involved.  What I am saying is that Christ would have us grow to the point that we possess the eager willingness that characterizes the BIC spirit. The Scripture tells us that Jesus went around doing good (Acts 10:38).  He used the power God had given Him to help others. The early Christians were full of this same kind of spirit (Acts 2:44-47, 4:32-37).   How powerful, wonderful, and Christ-like it is when people live with a BIC intent and bless the lives of others.

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Published by A Taste of Grace with Bruce Green

I grew up the among the cotton fields, red clay and aerospace industry of north Alabama. My wife and I are blessed with three adult children and five grandchildren.

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