Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Be Doers

-Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. James 1:22
-Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. Matthew 7:24
-Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say? Luke 6:46
-For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God's sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. Romans 2:13

   I think it is clear to everybody who reads these words that Christ calls us to be men and women of action when it comes to living out our faith.  For most of us, I don't think the problem is that we haven't heard these words before.  Most of us have heard these words many times in sermons, bible studies, your own reading of the Bible, but where is the action? What does that even look like because you just don't see it much here in the USA.  Our churches are filled with people who say they love the Lord and know all the right answers but like the fig tree, there is no fruit in their lives. Like it says in James 1:22 above, we are just deceiving ourselves.  I say "we" because I fall into that hypocrisy all to often.  The hard thing to do as a Christian in this country is stand out.  And I mean stand out like a city on a hill.  So many people get turned off to Christianity because they see "christians" that look no different than anybody else when we preach we are set apart.  So what does that look like? I think it all goes back to making God your first love.  Everything else in life is second.  When God is your first love your going to be spending time talking with him daily.  You read His Word because you can't get enough of His Truth not because you feel obligated or can squeeze it in before dozing off to sleep. You tell people about what He is doing in your life and how He is your hope and peace and how He can do the same for them. You invite them into a deeper relationship with you and like minded believers so you can encourage each other and grow in your love and knowledge of Christ. Your priorities change and so does what you do with your time.  Your time in front of the TV and surfing the internet just doesn't satisfy when you could be serving at the local rescue mission or reading a Christian author giving you new insights in your Christian walk or talking with your kids about what it means to live a life devoted to the God who saved you.  Is your church filled with people like that? The answer is probably no, but I hope we can get there.
   I was challenged in my Bible study group last night to take a call to action.  See, we realized that studying the Bible is a good thing but we needed to put feet to what we were learning.  We needed to be coming back each week with reports of what God was doing through us by being on mission each day.  Next week we are holding each other accountable to being on mission during this week.  Frankly that is a valuable piece that I need in my life. Brothers in Christ who can hold me accountable in my spiritual walk and even give me a nudge (or shove) when I need it.  I challenge any who read this to be on mission this week with us.  Start to live like someone set apart and bear fruit for all to see.

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