Many moons ago, I attended high school with a guy who knew the Bible frontwards and backwards.
He was raised in church and knew how to give off the “churchgoer glow” around other churchgoers.
But, I knew this guy pretty well. He was a good friend, but not one who bore much fruit of the scriptures he quoted.
Please understand I’m not judging. I wasn’t living a life pleasing to the Lord back then either. I too was raised in church and was faithful to youth group each Wednesday night. I played the part well, but my heart was far from God.
So, what’s the point, Cassie? I’m so glad you asked.
The point is this. While my friend had the head knowledge and could quote scripture with the best of pastors, he lacked heart knowledge. We both did.
I could tell my fair share of Bible stories and sing hymns with the best of the choir (worship bands weren’t a thing yet). My head knew all I needed to know to live a life pleasing to the Lord, but my heart was far from God.
Do not deceive yourselves by just listening to his word; instead, put it into practice.
Whoever listens to the word, but does not put it into practice is like a man who looks in a mirror and sees himself as he is. He takes a good look at himself and then goes away and at once forgets what he looks like. But, those who look closely into the perfect law that sets people free, who keep on paying attention to it and do not simply listen and then forget it, but put it into practice — they will be blessed by God in what they do. James 1:22-25 (GNB)
I sat in church every sunday, read the same verses everyone else read, but I refused to apply it to my life, to obey it.
Friend, you can show up to service every Sunday, you can sing loud and proud, you can greet with the best of them, play bass like a boss, pray elegant prayers, but if you are not applying the word of God to your life everything is in vain.
Don’t deceive yourself by merely listening to HIS word; apply it to your life.
Allow the head knowledge to collide with your heart and surrender it all to Jesus.
It’s not about what you know, but who you know. Dust off your sword, dig deep into the word and apply it to your life.
When you become a doer of God’s word there is no limit to what God will do in and through your life. Obedience always leads to blessing.
Cassie Downs, formerly of the Ellsinore area, is a bible teacher, author, retreat host, founder of Everyday Jesus Ministry, and serves as operations pastor at The Hill Church.