[CF Devotionals] 2016-09-07 - Unaware

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A couple weeks ago, I was doing the trimming in the yard with my new weed eater. As I was going along the outside edge of the driveway, I must have hit a spot of loose asphalt along the way, and it bounced off my arm and I didn’t realize it. A few minutes later, I caught a glance of blood on the inside of my wrist and into the palm of my hand. I turned to the back of my hand, to see the origin of my troubles, and there was a small area just over the top side of my wrist. It’s odd how we can have something shoot into our skin hard and fast enough to cause bleeding, and not really even notice it. I wish I could say this was unusual for me, but not so much. Very often, though, the result is just a bruise. Either way, it’s a wound, and they can happen when we are completely unaware. I have wondered how many other people have experienced wounds that they weren’t aware of, as well. They could be literal or figurative in nature, too.

My particular injury wasn’t even painful. But I have been injured accidentally, when it was quite painful. I have also had my feelings hurt by someone that was unaware of it having happened. So I am guessing that I have done it to others, and so the piece of driveway in my arm was a little reminder to be conscious of what I say and do. We never know our actions will affect others, and being mindful of the pain we might unintentionally cause could potentially keep them from going down a path from which they cannot recover. If it’s happened to you, then you know it’s just as important as making things right when you purposefully wrong someone and realize you have made a mistake, as it is when you accidentally do so. When there is the potential of causing harm either way, it needs to be corrected. So if you are ever feeling an internal nudge for having perhaps said or done something which could have hurt someone, then you have passed from a place of being unaware to responsible. Once we know the potential for damage, we have to move forward with that knowledge, as we interact with others. And so from that point forward, upon feeling a nudge, we need to make it right.

I have had moments in which I felt as though I should apologize, clarify, and be sure that I wasn’t hurting someone with my words or actions or both. A partial lyric from a Brooke Fraser song (called Albertine) based on how we must respond to what we have learned “… now that I have seen I am responsible; faith without deeds is dead ….”. God calls us the same way, with the word of the Lord, in the book of James, Chapter 2, verses 18-26 specifically.

“But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that–and shudder. You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone. In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead. “

It isn’t because of our correcting our behavior or our list of amends we have made, but our faith in conjunction with what we learn and what we do. We need both parts, for all of it to balance as God intends.

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All scripture references from King James Version (KJV) unless otherwise noted