I don’t know how many times I’ve listened to a pastor share a message or read something from a book and thought, “Wow, that was a good word.” We’ve probably all had these kinds of moments in our lives. But the question is: What do we do with what we just heard or read? Do we take those words and figure out how to apply them to our own lives? Or do we quickly forget about them and go back to doing whatever we were doing before?
That question can be applied to both reading the Bible and going to church. What is our reason for reading the Bible and going to church? Are we just checking off the box so that we can say we’ve done our “duty” as a Christian? I know that has been true for me at different times in my life. And I can tell you that those times in my life were the least fruitful. And by least, I really mean that there was no fruit.
This morning my devotions led me to James 1:23-24 which says: “Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.”
These scriptures remind me how important it is that I don’t just read the Bible to simply check off a box. Instead I should be reading His Word to discover how He desires me to live and then do my best to actually live it out.
As Christians, I think it’s important for us to understand the difference between knowing and learning. We can read the Bible from front to back and know what God desires of our lives, but if we aren’t living it out then we haven’t really learned anything. God wants us to be doers of the Word, which requires a response. Are we responding to Him and His Word or are we just reading it?