You want to fill in the blank, right?
I know what you are thinking, but this is a post about faith.
And by no means does practice make perfect in faith. Or does it? What does it mean to practice faith?
Practicing my faith should take on the full definition of practice. I want to carry it out, but I also want to participate in faith over and over and over.
I ponder this often. What difference does it make in practice? This relationship I have with God through Jesus Christ? Then I read this…
Dear friends, do you think you’ll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, “Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!” and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup—where does that get you? Isn’t it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense?
I can already hear one of you agreeing by saying, “Sounds good. You take care of the faith department, I’ll handle the works department.” Not so fast. You can no more show me your works apart from your faith than I can show you my faith apart from my works. Faith and works, works and faith, fit together hand in glove.
Do I hear you professing to believe in the one and only God, but then observe you complacently sitting back as if you had done something wonderful? That’s just great. Demons do that, but what good does it do them? Use your heads! Do you suppose for a minute that you can cut faith and works in two and not end up with a corpse on your hands?~James 2:14-20 (The Message)
Easy is what we look for, yet it is not even the right lens to look through. Practicing faith means listening, loving, being ready to obey God. It sometimes means that we must:
- open a tightly closed fist
- examine the hate in our hearts
- make brownies and give the middles to some and the corners to others
- open our wounds for God to heal
- believe in Christ Jesus, Son of God
- feed a hungry mouth
- get on an airplane to Haiti and help and know that the people there will help you too…and perhaps you will see God together
- make that phone call you’ve been dreading
- be nourished in all ways
- delight in watercolor painting with a child
- forgive again
- provide protection for the weak
- stand up for the broken
- wait, listen, learn
- read Scripture and meditate on it or just let it wash over
And be still…and know that God is
and God loves
and God wants more perfect loveliness for us than we could ever imagine.
So, go practice.