So how did you do on James’ self-assessment yesterday? (If you missed the sermon, check it out here) How is your religion…how is the outworking of your heart-felt relationship with God?
Are you keeping a close eye on your tongue? How are your words? We are called to speak in love and grace and yet so often gossip and hateful words escape our lips before we even know it. Our sinful nature boils up and words escape our mouths before we even process them. And there’s always someone listening! What are they hearing? Do they hear your faith, do they hear God in your words?
Are you caring for others? In our busy lives, it is so easy to think only of ourselves and our needs. How can I make it through this day meeting my needs and desires? And yet God’s heart is one of care. He cares for us and calls us to care for others. We need to become more aware of who is around us and what they are going through. Everyone is struggling with something and God may be calling you to help. Are you paying attention to them? In the Matrix movie franchise, the main character Neo sees everything when he’s “in the Matrix.” He can see beyond what is visible to what is really underneath it all. I wish I could see needs that way…to see beyond what people say and how they present themselves to the depths of their true needs. God calls us to care for others and that takes a lot of attentiveness!
Are you keeping yourself pure from the pollution of the world? As we dig into the trenches caring for others, opening doors, and reaching out to the world, we need to remember that we are called to be in the world but not of it. We have a new birth in God and need to “get rid of all moral filth and evil (James 1:21).” Paul encourages us in Romans 12:1 to “not be conformed to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” If we’re not careful, our natural tendency is to become like the world as our sinful nature bubbles up. Yet God calls us to pure living for His glory!
So how are you doing? If I’m being honest, I have some areas to work on! Let’s dig in this week and work together to build one another up in order to live lives that are pleasing to God our Savior and His Truth He has planted within us!
In Christ Alone,