I am not sure where I heard it the first time. That is okay because no one is sure where the phrase originated. Some say it has been around since 1100 AD and yet it did not actually appear in print until 1855. I usually credit my mother for first introducing this phrase into my life since she has always been full of wit and wisdom expressed in funny little phrases.
No matter who brought it into my life it has been a recurrent theme when living out my faith. The phrase is simply, “The Road to Hell is Paved with Good Intentions.”
The meaning is pretty straightforward. Most people have a mind and heart filled with the best of intentions. We want to live a righteous life. We want to read our Bibles, pray fervently and live lives of service. The reality is often far different. Our intentions never make it into reality and the life of faith we planned to live disappears into the mist of good intentions. That journey from good intentions that doesn’t stop at action only leads to destruction.
I continually remind myself of this truth as I make plans for the future. My intentions are not the measure of my faith. My actions are how I will be judged. I recently learned that some people have added a second part to that old phrase. They say, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions but the road to heaven is paved with good works.”
It’s Monday and I am looking upon another week. I have lots of good things that I would like to do. I really intend to do them. Maybe you feel the same way.
The real question is which direction will your week lead? Only your actions will tell.