My youngest daughter has a bad habit she’s been trying to break. It’s nothing major, but it’s been an ongoing thing. This morning we were discussing this on the way to school.
“Mommy, I am trying.” She responded at my questions.
“I know you are baby, but there is a difference between trying and doing.” I began to search for the right words to say here. We all have things we need to break as habits and she is only 8 years old. Suddenly a story from the Bible popped into my mind. “There is a story in the Bible about one man who God told him to do something and the man told God he’d do it and then he didn’t. Then there is a story where God told another man to do it, and while the other man told God no, eventually he did it. Which one of these men followed what God wanted?”
“The second one.” I heard her say from the back seat.
“Even if it may take you awhile to break the habit, then break it. Just telling people something isn’t the same as actually doing it, is it?”
“No.” I could tell she was pondering this all from the backseat. I knew she was listening and I would like to think that she’ll really work on breaking this bad habit and not just tell me she is.
As the car grew quiet again I began to think how much we all do these things in life. Know we need to make changes, and excuse our inactivity with a few “I’m trying’s” just to make ourselves feel better. I don’t want to come across as hardcore here, but it’s true that God isn’t interested in our lip service necessarily, but our actions. While we can’t get so works minded, we do have to remember that faith without works really is dead (James 2:14-26).
My conversation with my daughter spurred me to think, ‘What are those things in my life that I’ve been saying to myself and God that I’m working on, but really I am not?’ Ouch! I can name a couple. While I can’t be condemned, perhaps I do need to stop excusing those things with an ‘I’m working on it’. I know we all could probably list a few things. While we won’t be perfect we do need to do what we know God has said to us.
Perhaps you too can see a few things that you need to work on in your life. Let us all stop saying we’re going to do something about them, and start doing it! God has a plan and purpose for all of our lives. While He will open mighty doors for us, we need to do our part to get to the right door frame. Excusing our inactivity will just keep us sitting in the hallway.
Remember God has awesome plans for your life. Get excited!