In One Ear
By Marc Agnello
"Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says." -James 1:22 (NIV)
I read a newspaper article last year about a professional baseball player who couldn’t seem to make the necessary adjustments needed in his approach to hitting. The player contended that his hitting was fine, but many of his current and former coaches disagreed. They pointed to the fact that his batting average had continued to decline and that he was striking out at an alarming rate.
In one game, the player might have 3 hits, but in the next 4 games he wouldn’t get a hit, striking out 9 times. It’s not that the player didn’t have good coaching—one of his previous coaches was a former batting champion. The problem was that he wasn’t doing what the coaches were asking. James 1:22-24 says:
Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like aman observing his natural face in amirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was (NKJV).
A man who listens but does not put what he has heard into action immediately forgets what kind of man he is.
The recipe for consistent success is found in James 1:25: “But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does” (NKJV). Clearly, we see that if we listen to God and our coaches and do what they say, we will be blessed in what we do.
It is not enough to simply hear about something, know about it or even talk about it; you must live it. Just because you listen to God and your coaches, it doesn’t mean that you will do what they ask. You must do it!
1. Are you a listener but not a doer?
2. In what areas of your life do you need to put into action what you have heard?
3. As a competitor, what in your life makes it difficult for you to put your coach’s advice into practice? How can you overcome that difficulty?
Galatians 6:19; Ephesians 6:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:11,13; Hebrews 13:16
Lord, please help me live out Your Word in my daily life. I fall short so often, but I trust that with Your help, I can be a living witness to the gospel. Amen.