James 1:22-25New King James Version (NKJV)
22) But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23) For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24) for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25) But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.
Don’t want to deceive yourself? Want to leave a great legacy – a statement about who you were? Be doers of the word. Several years ago, the Lord revealed something to me. I was thinking about a speaker at a funeral and what they had said about a loved one who had passed away. In my heart, I heard the voice of the Lord ask, “What would you want them to say about you?” I said, “Lord, I want them to say that I’m kind and caring. That I lived for You and that I loved You with all my heart.” To which He responded, “Then live it.”
If we only have faith and no ministry, if we only believe but don’t live it out, we are that man who looks in the mirror and forgets. If we would forget, how can we expect others to remember? God has a perfect work for each one of us to accomplish. You might think you’re not equipped, but that’s a lie from Satan. Everything God has saved you from and brought you to has prepared you to reach out and help someone. And the things you are going through now will help you encourage someone in the future. The question is not are you prepared but are you willing?
James refers to the law of liberty. There are two laws that we are taught when we read the Bible. The first one is the law that God gave to Moses in Exodus – full of commands and regulations. Much of it is about what NOT to do. Don’t touch this, don’t do that. It started with 10 commandments but by the time Christ came, there were like a gazillion laws that man had made. They were sure to list all the things NOT to do. But Christ fulfilled that law because you and I can’t! He’s the only one who could refrain from all the things listed.
Now, you and I live under the law of Christ or the law of liberty. It’s not a freedom to sin, but freedom to love without reservation! We are now free to love God and those around us. Galatians 5:22-23 says, “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Instead of a law telling us what not to do, we live under a law that commands us to DO. These things are the law of liberty. As a child of God, He didn’t give me self-control and you gentleness… He gave us believers ALL these fruit. It’s up to us to choose to live it out.
There’s one more thing…Galatians 6:2 – Bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ. Love them where they are. Understand where they are and why they are there. Help them bear their burdens. If we continue in the perfect law of liberty, and do the work that God has called us to do, we will be blessed.
I wonder how different things would be if we understood GOD’s love and used it to love more.