See What You Say

“…Demonstrate your faith to me without your works, and I will demonstrate my faith to you from my works…” (James 2:18)

“It’s hard being a preacher.” I once complained.

My complaint sprung from the very striking realization that as a preacher, I am obliged to consistenly preach what’s right even if at times I am aware that there are moments when I do what’s wrong.

For instance, I needed to preach patience even if I know that sometimes I am impatient.

I needed to preach commitment even if I know that sometimes I am not committed.

I needed to preach faith even if I know that at times I don’t have much of it myself.

Honestly, sometimes, it is difficult to stand in front of a crowd even if deep within you, you know that you are preaching to yourself.

That’s probably why today’s reading struck a chord in my heart. In the letter of James, he said:

“…Demonstrate your faith to me without your works, and I will demonstrate my faith to you from my works…” (James 2:18)

This serves as an upward call to preachers like me. Words are to us what tools are to a mechanic. The stage is to us what the field is to a football player. The microphone is to us what the hammer is to a carpenter. 

But the major difference is this.

Once the mechanic finishes fixing a car, he stops being a mechanic.

Once the buzzer sounds, a football player can walk out of the field, dress down and cease from being a ball player.

Once the building is built, the carpenter stores away his hammer and pause from being a carpenter (at least until after the next project!).

But preachers cannot do that. You see, our preaching does not end when we go down from the stage. In fact, it will only begin to have meaning when we do. Our words are amplified by our works. In other words, the volume of our voice is only as loud as our lives. Hence the challenge to “Walk your talk”. When the talking ends, the walking begins. And the latter is more difficult than the former. As the reading says, our constant challenge is how to demonstrate our faith through our works.

Today, I pray for the special grace to walk my talk. And I pray for you, too. That as you strive to live a good life, people may then see what you say in your life.

A blessed weekend to you!

Bobby Q.

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