Weekend Bonus: Sermon Sampling

Do not merely listen to the word, and so
deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
(James 1:22)

Thoughts… You’ll probably go to church this weekend and listen to the Word of God taught by your pastor. So here’s the deal: Will you remember what he says five minutes after he’s done, and, if you do, more importantly, what will you do about it?

The biggest problem, as I see it, with the church in America, is that we are spiritually educated well beyond any corresponding level of obedience. We have become connoisseurs of fine sermons but we fall well short of any real implementation of the sermon’s content in the real world of our everyday life.

Sermon sampling is a sure way to spiritual lethargy, and I’m sure you don’t want that for your life. I certainly don’t. So here is a suggestion: Take a notebook with you to church, write down the main points of the message, and before you leave the service, write down at least one point of application that you will seek to implement that very week.

Try that for one month, and see if it doesn’t upgrade your experience of church, kick start some spiritual growth and release a little more of God’s blessings in your life. As James says in verse 25,

“If you do what [the Word] says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.”

Prayer… Lord, never let it be said of me that I talk the talk but I don’t walk the walk when it comes to my Christian faith. Help me to be a doer of your Word. And if I ever become guilty of hearing but not doing, give me a kick in the spiritual backside to jumpstart my obedience.

One More Thing… “The golden rule for understanding in spiritual matters is not intellect, but obedience.” —Oswald Chambers

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2 thoughts on “Weekend Bonus: Sermon Sampling

  1. Thanks, but I’d rather be in the spiritual Peanut Gallery. It’s a lofty position, usually poised up in the balcony where I can look down on pastor and congregation all at the same time. Up in my loft I get to scrutinize everything you say through my lens of book-learning and theoretical conjecture. It’s must less work than actually trying to humble myself to grow from something I heard in church. And it’s more rewarding to be able to tell my friends “I already knew everything the pastor spoke about today” than to eat humble pie and say “you know, he may have been on to something!” It also gives me implicit justification for missing a few Sundays if I’ve gone for a few weeks without “learning” anything. But if I try to actually apply something you say to my every-day eating-and-sleeping life, I might find it’s not as easy as it seems when sitting in the peanut gallery, and then I’d feel like I’m not worthy to enter Heaven’s gates, and that would be like hell. I know; I tried it once years ago (different pastor, mind you). Once was enough, believe me!