You don’t have to ask me to personalize things…
Ever since I can remember, I have had the tendency to personalize general comments (especially corrections) to the maximum.
- The teacher tells the entire class to spend more time and care on their penmanship and I star working at a snail’s pace.
- My parent tells my sibling and I to get quiet, and even though I was only on my bed reading, I move into the closet with a flashlight while my sibling barely turns her radio down.
- My school administrator tells the staff to do a better job monitoring the entire playground while on recess duty and not stand together in a huddle and talk. So I randomize my walking pattern even more.
I can personalize like a pro! Even when generalize statements don’t apply to me.
We MUST personalize
The problem is that, Spiritually, we MUST personalize the Scriptures. God inspired men to write them down and His Word is just as overflowing with wisdom, compassion, and mercy now as it was then. So many people read it (or hear it preached) and do not take a moment to see how it applies to them.
Today we are looking at James 1:25 which should hammer this home with a promise: “But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a does of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” Or in the CEV, “But you must never stop looking at the perfect law that sets you free. God will bless you in everything you do, if you listen and obey and don’t just hear and forget.”
We can personalize by looking into the perfect law of liberty. In other words, look deep into everything God set into motion or provide for your salvation. You accept Jesus and you personalize that work.
James also tells us to continue in that law. Our obedience and diligence shows that God’s love is not only real TO us, but real IN us.
Once we have it in us, next we must do the work before us. Being a doer means you didn’t only personalize God’s love and ask Jesus into your life, but you are sharing it with others. You can’t just hear the sermon on forgiveness and walk out the church door while glaring at the person you quarreled with 2 weeks ago.
Organize what you’ve learned and become obedient to it. Gif urge out how that becomes true in your life.
There’s a huge payoff for all this, and it’s clearly stated: God will bless what you are doing! God sees all we do, and how hard we are working for His Kingdom. He will reward us for all of it.