Practice What You Preach (James 1:22)

I have a dermatology colleague who definitely practices what she preaches. Once she was walking from the hospital clinic to her car in the parking lot. It was about 100 feet but for that brief distance, she placed a large sun-protective hat on her head. I marveled at how she compulsively and diligently set a positive example for everyone. Her behavior was completely consistent with her words.

Practicing what you preach is easy for some activities but decidedly difficult for others. I preach the virtues of sun protection and healthy skin habits and always apply sunscreen on myself and family members before going out in the sun light. I preach the importance of healthy lifestyles by not smoking or using recreational drugs. But my behavior has been far less consistent in my spiritual life than my professional life. Why? Is it because my professional life is always on display for my colleagues and employees to see but my private life is not? Is it because I think that if I simply do the “right” things, regardless of my thought life, I will not be held accountable to anyone. Or is it a symptom of a much deeper problem? Do I fear the opinions of others, and what they may think of me, more than I fear and trust God?

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
James 1:22 (ESV)

The Bible reminds us that when we follow Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, His Word must be completely obeyed. It is not enough to read and hear the Word, it must be consumed. It must become a part of our life so that there is no difference between our thought life and our actions.

We must practice what we preach. It is not an option. It is God’s command.

Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.