James - “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. But someone will say, ‘You have faith; I have deeds.’ Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.’” (James 2:17-18 NIV)
James reminds us that true faith in God must be accompanied by tangible actions that demonstrate our belief. We must live out our faith in God by carrying out His will and being obedient to Him. Ours is not a passive faith, but one that propels us into action. Jesus once said “A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem down to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road. By chance a priest came along. But when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. A Temple assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also passed by on the other side. Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day, he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.’ ‘Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?’ Jesus asked. The man replied, ‘The one who showed him mercy.’ Then Jesus said, ‘Yes, now go and do the same.’” (Luke 10:30-37)
We must walk by faith and not by sight, trusting that God’s plan is greater than our own understanding. It can be difficult to step out in faith, but we must trust that God is with us every step of the way. The Apostle Paul reminds us that “We live by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7 NIV) This means our faith journey must also include an inward transformation of our hearts and minds. As we seek and strive to follow the Lord, He changes us from the inside out, molding us to conform to His image. James writes, “If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.” (James 4:17 NIV) In this scripture, he is urging us to live our lives with purpose and intentionality. Every moment and opportunity we have should be used to serve and glorify God. Like the Good Samaritan, we must not only see those in need but also have the courage to act. As Christians, we must not be content with merely speaking about our faith, but instead, we should put it into action every day. Our faith should inspire us to live out the Gospel of Jesus in tangible ways, both inwardly and outwardly. May we walk by faith and follow Christ with our whole being, never wasting even a moment to do good and share His love with others.
Followup Activity - Reflect on areas of your life where your faith needs action. Pray and ask God to give you strength and courage to make your faith more active. If you’re leading your family through this devotion, discuss how your family might add action to their faith. Then, pray as a family, asking God to give you courage to help your faith be more active.
Prayer for Today - Lord, thank You for actively giving Your life for me. Help me always live out my faith through my actions. In Jesus’ name, Amen.