My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you’ve been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You’re deeply rooted in him. You’re well constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you’ve been taught. School’s out; quit studying the subject and start living it! And let your living spill over into thanksgiving. — Colossians 2:6-7, The Message
“Now live him.”
“Now do what you’ve been taught.”
These are the kind of statements that it feels like have been lost by many of us. We have begun to believe that all that matters is what kind of ideas we espouse. Do we “believe” rightly? Can we parrot statements of belief that are “orthodox”?
As important as those things are, what is just as important, perhaps more important, is how we live.
In the early history of Christianity what mattered most was The Way people lived. When a person wanted to convert to Christianity they had to show by their lives that they were indeed following The Way of Jesus. It is a fascinating history. The early church talked about people “seeing” how Christians lived and that by “seeing” the way Christians lived they would be compelled to follow The Way too. They also argued that if your life betrayed the words that you eloquently spoke to your neighbor you would drive them from the gospel.
For most of the history of Christianity the emphasis has been on living the way.
Only recently have we moved from a practiced, embodied faith to one that is just cerebral.
I think that if we could somehow return to a lived faith we might see the kind of dynamic, transcendent faith that is promised in the Scriptures. We might very well see a revival of The Way in our world.
As you consider your faith, is it something that you largely practice in your mind? Or do you live it out in your body?