Wednesday night we listened to Rev. Judith Banya tell about her journey to the ministry she now leads in Baiwalla, Sierra Leone. It was a story of people who did things for her out of Christian love. It was a story of her returning that Christian love in her actions as an adult. She reminded me of the lyrics of a Matthew West song …
I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now, thought
How'd we ever get so far down, and
How's it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, "God, why don't You do something?"
… [God] said, "I did, yeah, I created you"
There is far too much talk in the world, usually motivated by political or religious ideologies, about what is wrong in the world, who needs to be looked after, which parts of the created order need protecting. We talk about caring for children, about the crisis of climate change, about the neighbors who are hungry. We talk about valuing someone’s God-given identity, about protecting personal freedoms, about sin. There’s a lot of talk. But action seems harder to come by right now. Stories of action are not told with as much frequency as opinions are shouted. If one does decide to act, more opinions and ideologies are lobbed at one’s actions from an opposing viewpoint. Why don’t we just do something? Our current cultural and religious climate in the United States seems to devalue it.
The author of the Book of James writes this:
What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but does not have works? Surely that faith cannot save, can it? If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food and one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,” and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. (James 2:14-17, NRSV)
Why don’t we just do something!
What’s the one small step you can take this weekend to “do something” to act on the faith you already have? I know you to be a people of faithfulness and of action. Our current cultural climate needs more people like you, acting on your faith. So I challenge you this weekend to take one small (or big) step to act on your faith. Bring tuna to the church for PROP. Donate to another charity that protects the God-given identity of others. Offer acts of compassion and care to a literal neighbor. Take a step to act out of love for a neighbor who lives in another part of the world. Tell your story that might bring healing and new life to another. Attend an Al-anon meeting to get healthy. Go to AA with a friend trying to get healthy. Plant a tree or pick up trash to care for God’s creation. Ride your bike or walk instead of taking the car.
There are so many little steps you can take this weekend to “do something” to act in faith. As the chorus of the song reminds us…
If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it's time for us to do something, yeah
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
Oh, it's not enough to do nothing
It's time for us to do something
Pastor Becky Jo
PS: The video for Matthew West’s song can be found here with a ton more ideas to inspire your “something” to do!
PHOTO by MabelAmber, used by permission via Pixabay