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Vail: Words require deeds; Faith demands action

By Joshua Vail
On August 31, 2010

Actions speak louder than words.

If you're going to talk the talk, you have to walk the walk. Put your money where your mouth is. Practice what you preach.

Faith without action is dead.

If I say I believe something but don't act on it, then what good is it for me to say it? I might as well keep my mouth shut.

What if someone comes to my attention who can't afford to buy clothes or keep themselves from starving? If I say "good luck," and send them away, what good have I done?

On the other hand, if I say I believe that "love your neighbor as yourself" is a rule to live my life by and act on it, not only will I do some good but my actions will receive notice.

Maybe somebody else decides to come and help and suddenly there's two people doing some good, then three.

And then there's the benefit that when people see the result of my belief that they'll want to know more. After all, it's only logical that someone who truly believes what they believe would want others to believe the same thing.

But I can't change anybody, and why would I want to? If they're going to believe the same thing it's going to be on their own inclination, not because I've somehow convinced them or coerced them.

If I believe that "As far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone," (Romans 12:18) is a rule to live by, then I'm going to have to only fight with someone when it's too important not to. I shouldn't be attacking people who don't believe what I believe.

I shouldn't expect that people who don't believe what I believe follow my morality. Doesn't that mean that I'm more concerned that other people are following what I believe than I am?

Last I checked, that's still called hypocrisy, and I don't want to be known for that. I want to be known as someone whose faith is alive.

I want to be known as someone who puts actions and faith together and does something to help people and maybe just change the world.

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