14 My brothers and sisters, what good is it if people say they have faith but do nothing to show it? Claiming to have faith can’t save anyone, can it? 15 Imagine a brother or sister who is naked and never has enough food to eat. 16 What if one of you said, “Go in peace! Stay warm! Have a nice meal!”? What good is it if you don’t actually give them what their body needs? 17 In the same way, faith is dead when it doesn’t result in faithful activity.
Ah, Valentine’s Day. A day dedicated to expressing love to those closest to us. My husband is taking me to the most romantic event a person could do – hatchet throwing. Who says romance is dead? And why did he book a reservation to go hatchet throwing on Valentine’s Day? Because I had mentioned that it looked like fun almost a year ago.
When he suggested this Valentine’s event, I found it to be more meaningful than any swan boat ride or dinner on the shore. It’s one thing to have love for someone, it’s another thing to want to show it, to want that love to affect others. His taking the time to remember and act on doing something that I want to do is not the reason I love him, but it makes me feel loved. His making a mental note that this was something I wanted to do, then planning it is not his proving his love – it’s just a response of his love.
In today’s text from the book of James, we are being challenged to have a faith that creates action in us. Our actions aren’t to prove our faith or earn God’s love but are simply a resulting of it really living and making a home inside of us. Our faith should make us want to serve others. Our love should make us want do kind things or remember details.
All that is to say, I feel love that existed without the action by there being the action – by that love creating a longing to affect me. Let’s just hope I know how to throw a hatchet!
by Rachel Callender
For Pondering & Prayer
How have you seen faith transformed into action? What has that taught you about what having faith is?
Prayer: Holy God, inspire a faith and love inside of us that makes us want to express and share it in the world. Amen.