“With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? – Micah 6:6-8.
There are many reasons why I love my “job” as pastor of Northstar Church. I am reminded of the old quote by Confucius: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” I completely agree with this quote. How could you not love a job where you have the privilege to remind yourself and others that God has saved me and gives me the privilege of being His child. Secondly, how could you not love a job that gives you the opportunity to spend time in God’s word to study who He is and how much He loves me.
It is not a perfect job, however. There are weeks when I wish there was a few more days between Sundays. No, I don’t need additional days for preparation. I need the additional time to perform an application litmus test. I’m sure you are a little confused so let me explain: I don’t generally wrestle with what to say and how to say it. What I would use the extra time for is to think through and evaluate how the message speaks into my life, my relationships, my habits, character, etc. Do I apply what I am talking about in my life? Do I possess the faith I am talking about? Do I lean on the promises? In other words, do I practice what I preach? And then when I am comfortable, I teach what is on my heart, trusting in the Holy Spirit to do the work only He can do. Once done, I repeat the process for next week.
What do you do between Sundays? For many Christians today, Sunday morning worship services or weeknight small group gatherings are the times and places when we talk and think about our relationship with God. We can come to church every weekend and be moved by the worship of the risen Savior. But, the Bible tells us that is not enough. I believe the time in between Sundays is the time to turn belief into behavior. Reading and listening to God’s Word without acting on it will not build your relationship with God. It’s not enough to just say that you agree with what God’s word says on a subject. You must actually do it. God’s word is meant to be acted upon.
I challenge you to take what you learn on Sunday and respond to it between Sundays. Respond by allowing the scripture to change us – first an inward change, and then in our outward practice. In Romans 2:13, Paul wrote “For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.” There is certainly value in a good sermon or Bible study or small group discussion. But at the end of the day, we must do what the Bible tells us. We must allow God’s word to work in us.
- Why do you think we tend to be hearers of the word, but don’t do anything to fix what we hear or see?
- Often our areas of disobedience are blind spots. How can we see these areas that we often overlook?
- Where do spiritual gifts fit in with being doers of the word?
- How can we be better at applying the truths that we are exposed to? What is one truth that you need to apply to your life, but haven’t yet?