Berlin Sans FB – James 1:19-27, “19My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. 21Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror 24and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.
26If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. 27Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”
In this day and age, it’s more difficult than ever before to listen. Too often have I found it difficult to concentrate on a simple conversation when the dishwasher is active and the computer speakers all the louder to keep up in the other room. How much more difficult it is to listen to God! For the record, there more we try at a sort of works-salvation thing, the less it will actually save us. However, in more than one place faith is backed up by action. Saying, “I believe.” Is easy. Saying, “Because I believe, I’ll give my tithe every Sunday no matter what.” Is difficult. What about the other areas of life? It seems we now know what we’re up against. Financially, America is in the same sinking boat as everybody else. Our lifeline? God is, but we still have to accept his offer to save us individually.
America considers herself religious, no doubt about that. It’s just that America hasn’t quite figured out the relationship part. If we were really religious, there would be nobody down and out. Even better, we’d be too decent to allow what is clearly evident on televison. Schools would be transformed, and students lives changed for the better. So America, will you trust in the God that built you into the nation you are today? Will you allow other gods, some known by name and others like Convenience and Money, to take you down the wide and easy road to destruction? Will you remain on the boat of the world, or will you reach for that lifeline?