(Yes, that is a picture of my actual house, my actual Bible, and my actual glass of water…Isn’t a digital camera fun?)
“So, Dawn, what did you read in your bible this morning?” Well, I’m glad you asked!
Listening and Doing
19 Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.20 Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.21 So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls.
22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror.24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.
26 If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless.27 Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
–James 1:19-27 (NLT)
There are several good points in this passage, but I want to focus on just one. In my bible, verse 22 says, “Be doers of the word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves.” That phrase, doers of the word, stuck in my head all day. There is this boundary, which is at the same time a fine line and a gaping canyon, between knowing what we want to do and actually doing it. It is a fine line because knowing what I want to do can be so close! I can have decided, down to the most minute detail, how to act. I can know why I want to act, and how I can do it. But at the same time, it is sometimes a gaping canyon to jump across to reach the point of actually acting! Sometimes it baffles me. Why is it such a leap?
“But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says.” Clear, and direct. Let us go forth and do what we read in our bibles, and what we hear in our churches. Let us be doers of the word!