So many believers come to Church every week and take notes as the leader or pastor teaches God’s Word. The preacher starts to share and people take out their pens and their journals and take notes. This warms the heart of the preacher because it is easier to teach when people are hungry and receptive.
However, we need to consider the reason for listening to someone teach the Word of God. It seems to me that many people are simply collecting information and becoming well informed regarding what the Bible says. They know the Bible stories, they understand the teachings of Jesus, they are aware of the basic tenets of the Paul’s letters to the early churches that he planted. But, is that really enough?
I believe that the Bible is meant to help change us from the inside outward. I believe that the Bible and God’s Words contained in it are meant for more than information, they are meant to bring about transformation. But, for change to happen people need to take action. Believers need to apply the Word they are hearing to their daily lives – their actions, their attitude, their words. Taking notes is good but it is really just the start. True and lasting changes in one’s life begin on the inside as we hear and heed God’s Word and begin to apply it to our lives every day.
For real change to happen, we must go from knowing to doing. It is at this point that transformation begins. Transformation is always difficult, yet the results are so beautiful. Difficult because we don’t like to change. And, because it takes courage, consistency, and determination. But, when we apply God’s Word and begin to change then we are not only faithful we become fruitful.
It is difficult because saying is always easier than doing. As the old saying goes, “talk is cheap.” Action and change costs. Action brings transformation and thus, although difficult at times, it is really necessary and in the end very beautiful.
Everything worthwhile in life is uphill – all the way. Transformation requires us to walk uphill. Every day. All the way. Most people are unwilling to commit to that. Instead of climbing, they would rather be…
- Talking – “Let’s discuss uphill climbing”
- Thinking – “Let’s contemplate uphill climbing”
- Planning – “Let’s strategize about uphill climbing”
- Surveying – “Let’s ask others what they think about uphill climbing”
- Studying – “Let’s examine what uphill climbing looks like”
- Resting – “Let’s conserve energy before we start climbing”
Transformation is a result of serious application, not information and more education. That’s why Gandhi said, “An ounce of practice is worth more than tons of preaching.”
Christians are called to live transformational lives. That takes courage. The courage to let go of the familiar and set off on a better way. The courage and determination to start. Today would be a good day to do just that.