What if … you preached what you practiced? Wait, what? Isn’t the saying “Practice what you preach?” That is the common saying and it is supposed to prod us to live out what we say. It is supposed to encourage us to put our stated beliefs into living action. But what if …
What if … you were required to state your beliefs based solely on how you are living? As a friend of mine said in response to me when I posed the question on Facebook, “hmmm!”
What if … we preachers could only preach sermons that were in sync with how we had lived the previous week? Not how we desired to live but how we had actually lived. Would our sermon change in any way? How different would the sermon need to be if it had to match how we had lived the previous week? Hmmmm!
What if … those closest to us preachers were allowed to interrupt our sermon so that we had to correct what we wanted to say and instead had to say what matched how we had lived at home the previous week? That would certainly provide some tension and drama to the worship service. How different would our study be if we could only preach what we had practiced throughout the week? Hmmmmm!
What if … all of us who claimed to be followers of Christ could only state opinions that matched how we were really treating others? Would your opinions sound different? Hmmmmmm!
What if … we really gave thought to our actions before we took the actions to make sure that our actions matched what we claim? I know that last question is a grammatical mess, but if you can follow my thought think about it. Would you have to pause before doing things, or would your life just flow in smooth alignment with your words? Hmmmmmmm!
I have been wrestling with these thoughts for the past 24 hours. This wrestling has really given me pause. In fact, during my study for my upcoming sermon I stopped studying and have just been running my recent actions through the filter of what I plan to say. The sermon this Sunday will be on applying forgiveness in our relationships and accepting forgiveness in our own relationship with Christ. What could you say about forgiveness if you could only say things that you had actually done in recent days?
What if … hmmmmmmmm!
This might be a very interesting sermon if the Lord keeps prompting me in the direction He is so far in my study. Maybe this would be a good Sunday to take some vacation, hmmmmmmmmm!