It’s Hurricane Season, Baby. Are You Ready?

So, years ago I taught a Bible study at a church and one day the pastor called me into his office.

“I’ve had a complaint about the study you’re leading.”

“OK.” I replied. “What is it?”

“I understand you’ve been emphasizing the need for people to put into practice what they read in the Bible.” He said.

“Yes.” I nodded and waited.

He just leaned back in his chair, his mouth a straight line.

“What is the complaint?” I prompted.

“That was it. You’re asking people to do what the Bible says.” He looked at me as though I should be perfectly clear about my transgression.

I looked around for hidden cameras before asking. “I shouldn’t be encouraging people to apply the Bible to their lives? Is that what you’re saying?”

“Well, that’s very – personal. Don’t you think? I believe we should simply present the Bible as a wise source of living but stay out of people’s actual lives. That’s really the best way to teach. Anything else gets very – messy.” He scowled at me with all the experience and knowledge he had gained in his position and waited for me to concede to his wisdom.

He’s still waiting.

That’s always been my problem, really, the fact that I believe we shouldn’t just READ the Bible but that we should DO what it says. I mean, you can’t get into too much trouble by just reading the Bible – plenty of Biblical scholars have proven THAT but watch what hits the fan when you actually try applying what God says to daily living! That’s a recipe for danger and social upset!

Of course, I didn’t come up with this idea on my own. James 1:22-26 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.”

And, Jesus, the Man Himself, advocated living out the Word of God when he told the parable of the man who built his house on a rock in Matthew 7:24-27, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Nothing unclear about that story, right? Live out God’s word and you’re building your life on a firm foundation. Ignore God’s word and when the Big Bad Wolf shows up, you’ll find you built your house out of straw instead of brick. (OK, that’s my paraphrase right there.)

Jesus was never afraid of personal. He walked right smack into the middle of people’s lives and messed things up. He’s still doing that.

There’s nothing simple about what I’m advocating. It SOUNDS simple – read God’s word and do what it says – that SOUNDS simple but there’s nothing simple or easy about loving our enemies or laying down our lives for our friends or speaking the truth I love. It’s often complicated, usually messy and, oh yeah, is it personal!

But it’s real. Life is messy and complicated and personal and Jesus is right in the middle of it all. That was the plan, right? Emmanuel means “God with us”. He knows exactly how bad things can get when you actually DO what God says to DO. It didn’t win Jesus any popularity contests and it got Him killed in what looked like the end.

But the power of God prevailed and DOING God’s word resulted in the undoing of the enemy – complete defeat – resurrection for Him and everlasting life for the rest of us.

That is still true for us that the DOING of God’s word results in the UNDOING of the enemy in our lives.

But you know what I’m talking about, don’t you? You’ve tried actually doing what God says to do. I really want to hear YOUR story. Leave a comment about a time YOU did what the Bible says to do and what were the results.

Want to shake things up in your world? Make a change? Live the adventure? Get called into the office? Read God’s word and then do what it says. Start a revolution.

It’s hurricane season, baby. Where have you chosen to build your house?

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    The Conversation

  1. Andrea says:

    AMEN…I praise GOD that you stood boldly on HIS word urging others to take action and become all GOD created them to be.
    Blessings, andrea

  2. I don’t know how bold I was but I did stick to teaching the way I teach. We left that church not long after that for obvious reasons.

  3. I was asked to leave a church a few years ago for much the same reason. I was horrified that people in te church felt the solid teaching of the world was a problem. Leaving in a small community has proven a problem in finding another church home as many rumors went forht from the the situation. All lies, but non the less hard to battle. I am today still seeking where God has for me, beause I willcontinue to go forth in HIM!

    Thanks for sharing!