Community in Action December 29, 2020

not by works,

so that no one can boast.

For we are God’s handiwork,

created in Christ Jesus to do good works,

which God prepared in advance for us

to do.

Ephesians 2:9-10

    Yesterday I reminded us that it is through our faith in Jesus Christ that we are saved. Salvation is of course a word that bears interpretation, but not today. What I did want to mention is that just because we don’t or can’t earn our salvation we still are called to be active in the world, engaged with the world around us.

    These words by Paul are to be taken in tandem with the words of Yakov (known by many of us as the book of James) chapter 2:17, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action is dead.”

    Our actions don’t prove our faith, but our evidence of it. Our actions should be a natural outcome of what we believe. Jesus even says in the parable of the sheep and goats in Matthew 25:31-46 that treating the least of these shows your love for him.

    When I say natural outcome I think for someone of us we have a more natural tendency than others to show compassion or care, but once we have been shown how to love someone in action we can imitate it. If we constantly strive to share that compassion with others it will eventually become a habit, a natural way for us to act.

    I know there is more than once that I have walked by someone with a need and ignored them, but when I have been given a second chance I have amended my ways, because of the prompting of the Spirit, and acted more compassionately.

    So when in 2020 did you ignored the opportunity given to you to show compassion? When in the last month did you miss the chance to help someone in need? When in the last week did you not offer someone the self-sacrificial love God has given you?

    I think we all can agree that part of our DNA, part of the reason we have been created is to do good works, see scripture above. We each will be given more than one opportunity to show God’s love to people and this creation in the coming year.

    So let us prepare ourselves. Let us get ready to meet the new year with new resolve to live out our salvation with the compassion which Jesus shows in all of the gospels.

    Seeking to grow in faith and action with you,

    Pastor Randy

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