In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. (James 2:17)
A couple months ago I received this email from my wonderful sister-in-law, who has become a devoted friend. I have saved this story for a special occasion and felt that this is the time to share it. I’ve been doing a study on the men and women who lived by faith. There are so many people in the Bible who looked forward to the things of God in faith, their actions followed what the believed God would do, not what they always saw Him do. Sometimes I think we live out lives in conditional ways. Like, “God I’ll go on a missions trip for You when things change in my finances…” “God I’ll share the Good News of Your Son Jesus when it’s a little more convenient…” “God I’ll go to church when I’m not so tired, when the week hasn’t been so full, etc.” The excuses seem to pile up in several areas, but isn’t the time to live for God, right now? Here is a story about a bus driver who was paying attention to the actions of a passenger on the bus.
It Was Only a Quarter
Several years ago; a preacher from out-of-state accepted a call to church in Houston, Texas. Some weeks after he arrived, he had an occasion to ride the bus from his home to the downtown area. When he sat down, he discovered that the driver had accidentally given him a quarter too much change.
As he considered what to do, he thought to himself, “You’d better give the quarter back. It would be wrong to keep it.” Then he thought, “Oh, forget it, it’s only a quarter. Who would worry about this little amount? Anyway, the bus company gets too much fare; they will never miss it. Accept it as a gift from the Father’ and keep quiet.”
When his stop came, he paused momentarily at the door, and then he handed the quarter to the driver and said, “Here, you gave me too much change.” The driver, with a smile, replied, “Aren’t you the new preacher in town? I have been thinking a lot lately about going somewhere to worship. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change. I’ll see you at church Preacher.”
When the preacher stepped off of the bus, he literally grabbed the nearest light pole, held on, and said, “Oh my heavenly Father I almost sold Your Son for a quarter.”
Our lives are the only scripture some people will ever read. This is a really scary example of how much people watch us as Christians and will put us to the test! Always be on guard and remember that you carry the name of our Messiah on your shoulders when you call yourself “Christian.”
Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your word; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.
You never know when someone is watching the actions that you perform daily. You never know when someone is listening to the words you are saying. Every word you say and every action you do will affect someone around you. How do you want it to affect the Kingdom of God? Live for Christ daily, in everything that you do, even when you think no one is paying attention. I guarantee you, someone is certainly keeping their eye on you. May your actions reap good habits and your habits reap a great character and may your character reap the only destiny worth living for; the destiny of eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Dear Father God, I pray that I will be aware of my actions daily. May I continue to live wholeheartedly for You in everything that I do and may my thoughts, words, and actions line up with the Word of God. Please convict me when I get even slightly off track, as I long to live a completely sold out life for You!
Living Wholeheartedly for You God,