If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them. (Jn. 13:17)
Today’s scripture is clear. What we know about God’s desires must be lived out, practiced, and followed.
In order to be faithful to God, we need to “walk what we talk” and “practice what we preach.” If there isn’t a connection between what we know about God to how we live for God, we won’t be doing the world much good. God doesn’t bless knowledge for the sake of knowledge, but God does bless us when we translate what we know into how we act, speak, and treat others. We can be plenty smart about God while also being rather useless for God’s purposes.
No matter how good our understanding of God’s scriptures, no matter how sound our theology, no matter how right we might be on any particular issues or causes, we won’t be living into God’s blessings unless we translate what we know in our heads into what we feel in our hearts, and into what we do with our hands and feet and lives.
Just as today’s scripture is clear, so is today’s encouragement. We need to live what we know about God if we’re to receive all of the blessings God desires to give. What do we know about God and about how God wants us to live?
We know that God is love, which means that we’ll be blessed when we love. We know that God forgives us, which means that we’ll be blessed when we forgive. We know that God cares about all of his children, which means that we’ll be blessed when we work against poverty and speak against prejudice. We know that we’re all made in God’s image, which means we’ll be blessed when we honor and respect the dignity of every child of God.
Some of us need the encouragement of today’s scripture because we can sometimes fall into over-thinking, over-processing, over-discussing, and over-arguing about what we know about the Christian life at the expense of living it. We will indeed be blessed—and we’ll be a blessing to others—when we live what we know and practice what we believe.
- Are there things you know or believe about God that are hard for you to practice and live into? If so, what are they? If so, how come?
- If you lived more fully into what you know or believe about God, how would that bless you and others?
- Have you ever over-thought, over-processed, over-discussed, or over-argued about God, and under-lived, under-practiced, or under-translated your faith?