One of the challenging topics to wrap our heads around is the topic of faith and works. Most Christians agree that we are saved by faith not by our works. With that said, we also agree that faith with no works is rather dead. I mean if you say you have faith but then your life is not reflecting that faith you have to wonder whether it is real faith. But similarly you can do all the greatest works in the world. Be one of the best people and this will not save you. For no matter how “good” and “perfect” we attempt to be it will not save us. We are all imperfect, sinful people.
“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” James 2:14-17
One of the things I have struggled within my own journey is the fact that as a person I have very limited time, energy, resources, etc. I cannot feed everyone. I cannot cloth everyone. I cannot meet the needs of everyone. Similarly if you have several people needing things and you give your resources to one but then do not then have it to give to another oh no. Similarly, people are not always honest. It soon becomes very challenging how to make decisions and how best to act. It is not easy to practically try to love and meet the needs of others. It is not always easy to practically walk by the spirit and fulfill God’s greatest commandment.
This is one reason community and church is so incredibly important. For as one person there is only so much we can do. As one person we can easily be overwhelmed and taken advantage of. In order to more effectively love our neighbor as ourself and do what this passage of scripture is talking about we need community. We need groups. For this is more effective and safer.
So if you are someone who struggles by feeling overwhelmed by trying to meet the needs of other people. If you are someone who’s good works are wearing you out and spreading you to thin. Then consider changing your approach. Work on building and participating in a community of other Christians so that you can not only be more effective, have the support you need but also be more in line with how God created us to operate.
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