Scripture Passage: James 2: 17, 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
The word of God tells us that faith is dead if it is merely followed by words and actions are something else. The soul is destroyed if we only sing of His praise through our lips while through our actions we betray Him (John 14:12, 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.)
Mark 5: 25-34, speaks of a woman who had been bleeding severely for the past 12 years. She had lost all her wealth and prosperity in the hands of many doctors. She heard of Jesus. Believing in Him, she followed Him in the crowd saying to herself,” If I just get to touch His clothes, I will get well”. It was not just that Jesus healed her, rather His power had gone out of Him and she was healed. Jesus realized that power had gone out of Him, so He turned towards the crowd and asked,” Who touched my clothes?”.
According to Jesus it was a right question but the disciples didn’t feel so. They asked Him, ” You see how the people are crowding around you, why do you ask who touched you?”. Touch caused by pushing and shoving in the crowd and the purposeful touch are two different things. Every came and touched Him in the crowd, while only the woman touched Him with a purpose.
Now lets ask a question: Does our heart in faith follow Him in a crowd or does it touch Him and His heart?? Let Jesus turn around upon our touch also, and ask “Who touched me?”.
Even the disciples selected by Jesus were caught up in the crowd. Prayer and worship without sincerity is of no use. In today’s world, the special days and occasions are celebrated with such pompous show and lavish style that its become routine for us all. It now lacks meaning and depths. We are satisfied with the momentary and worldly gains. It is one which lacks touch and presence of Jesus. Let us learn a lesson from the woman who was healed of her bleeding. Without bringing anyone’s attention towards herself, she secretly touched Jesus all the while firmly establishing her faith. This turned into a blessing for her.
Lets ask ourselves: How is our faith?? Firmly Established?? Like an upturned vessel?? Or like a vessel with holes?? Hearts with holes or upturned hearts cannot receive grace from God. Even if God’s blessing reach them how would they fill the hearts?? How is our worship service nowadays?? Does it create a crowd?? The distance between our touch and Jesus in the crowd is the same as the distance between Bible and us. Those who believed and affirm in the word of God would follow it in action in daily life.
Changes and amendments should be made. Holes should be filled and upturned vessels/hearts should be set straight. Then we should pray: My Lord, fill me with your grace though I am filled with holes. Fill me with your life-giving water and Holy Spirit. The Lord showers us with His grace at His appointed time. E.g.Elizabeth became pregnant at her old age. She lived away from the public eyes (Luke 1:25, 25 “The Lord has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favor and taken away my disgrace among the people.”) This blessing was revealed only to Mary. The Lord showers us with blessings secretly. Lazarus was terminally ill. Jesus did not arrive even when called. Lazarus died. Jesus came uncalled and rose him from the dead. What is needed of us is firm faith (John 11: 21-22, 21 “Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”) Let’s make our actions, worship, prayers and devotion ways to transfer the strength of the Lord and also the touch and presence of God. Let not the faith be dead.
Action is the best teacher. First it experiments and then teaches. Everyone keeps and eye on their goals but not everyone is able to pull the trigger. Let this not happen to us. Let us pray that our actions are followed with firm faith and belief.