Friday, August 6, 2010

"Living it Outloud," Kelli Zaniel

Are we really living God’s Word out loud? James 1:22 tells us, “Don’t just listen to God’s Word, but do what it says.” I want to use words if only necessary. I want my actions to speak louder than words. I want my reactions to be reflective of Jesus in my life.

Living the Bible out loud illustrates a life that is defined by the love and power of a Holy God. It is a testimony of God’s river of love flowing through us and splashing out onto others close enough to be touched by it. It shows the ordinary passerby that God’s word is not only hidden in our hearts but overflowing from our hearts.

I heard one of the most inspirational stories last night. My mother-in-law’s sprinkler system required immediate attention and repair. A Christian man came to her home and replaced the damaged sprinkler heads. As he turned to leave, she asked, “How much will that cost?” The godly man replied, I never charge widows for services rendered.” Scratching her head in amazement she graciously thanked him as he drove away.

Two awesome verses come to mind.

•“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you” (James 1:27) and

•“Take care of any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God” (1 Timothy 5:3-4).

These books of the Bible are two of my favorite. They give practical advice for living the Christian life. They are convicting. They are hard. They are transforming.

God pauses for us as we turn the pages of our Bible. He pauses long enough to interrupt the wealth of worldly wisdom we have tangled in our hearts. He then rearranges and replaces it with His godly wisdom, peace and perspective.

This story is an awesome example of one man who faithfully read God’s Word, allowed it to saturate his life and followed through by doing what it instructed.

How perfect that God would reveal himself in the midst of a mundane task such as changing sprinkler heads for a stranger. Whether a gentle whisper, claps of thunder or just an ordinary man living the Bible out loud-- God speaks.

God, I want to be more like you. I want your desires to be mine. Please give me the boldness to live your transforming Words out loud. Amen.
(Elaine, I see Jesus in you. Love you.)

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