Scripture

James 2:22 (NIV)

You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did.

Observation

Have you ever filled out an online dating profile or used any other sort of matchmaking device? What about describing the things that you like and don’t like? Hobbies and interests? I’m pretty sure that if I asked you what you like to do and don’t like to do that you’d be able to provide me with some answers. I’ll say that, if you’re reading this, then you probably like to blog. It’s not often that I find people who don’t have a blog reading blogs. I wonder what that says about our audiences and our perceptions of the people we reach? I’ve often thought that we only reach a small number of people throughout the world. That we’re just a huge circle of people all feeding off of the same pie.

If you are a blogger then you know that it’s not something that you can say you like to do and then not do it. Your blog will die. However, I think that we often say that we like to do some things and yet we don’t do them. For example, I love downhill skiing and water skiing. I put those down on the list of activities that I like. However, I haven’t been skiing in over ten years. It’s not that I don’t want to go. It’s more a matter of money and priorities. When I lived in Santa Barbara it was super expensive and I couldn’t just go skiing on the weekend like I once did. When I think of my “lists” of things that I like I find that most of them aren’t things that I do as often as I used to do. If at all, anymore.

What does that say about me? Am I a boring guy who sits around and does nothing? Am I living in the past, holding onto the glory days of my youth? Have my opportunities changed? My priorities? Surely, there must be reasons why things are the way that they are. Perhaps it’s just me. Perhaps I’m the only person who is like this. Do I need to revaluate?

I can say that my relationship status and where I live have a lot to do with what I do and don’t do. Since moving to Sacramento I haven’t gone out and done a lot of the things that I did when I was in Santa Barbara. I tell myself that’s because I don’t know the area, but is that the case? When I lived in Santa Barbara I would go hiking a lot. Several times a week I’d go out and enjoy nature in all its glory. Now, in Sacramento, if I want to go hiking I can get a more rugged experience if I drive an hour or so away. You know what? I really don’t feel like driving an hour or so to just go hiking on my own. I think that says a lot. In Santa Barbara, the mountains, hills, and ocean were right there. A short drive. I could go out for a couple of hours or more and when I was done, be home almost instantly. Here, in Sacramento, I’d have to make a day out of it, driving through the traffic to get to the mountains to enjoy nature and then back again.

Doesn’t that sum up how we do things? Our commitment to what we do isn’t so much based on the effort we put into it but the type of effort we have to put into it. The cost. It’s what we do when we evaluate, right? We count the cost. Is that why there are so many people who identify as Christian but don’t go to church or live a life that reflects their faith? It’s a growing popular idea that, since we are the church, we don’t need to go to a building for “church.” I have attended “church” when there’s been no building, just a group of people who all loved Jesus, sharing fellowship and taking in the word of God.

If we declare that we are the church and we don’t need to surround ourselves with other Believers once, twice, or more times during the week, then who do we join in fellowship? The people of the world? Perhaps it’s an online thing for you or you watch it on television. Perhaps you can’t go to a gathering for other reasons. At least, if you’re pursuing other means then you are pursuing your faith.

However, if we put nothing into our faith. If we don’t read the Bible, pray, worship, or fellowship then can we say that we have faith? At a minimum, these activities which show our faith are just that; the bare minimum. I’m not speaking of salvation. We are saved by the grace of God, not by our works. However, we demonstrate our faith in God in how we choose to live our lives. Do you read your Bible, pray (not just for meals), worship, and share in fellowship with other Believers? That’s awesome! If you do these things then I believe that you will do other things that reflect your faith in God.

When you make God a priority in your life then your life will reflect it. Just as those who spent time with Jesus were recognized by the world, so shall you be recognized.

Do you know God? God knows you and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. Nothing is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so that we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.