You see, Jesus shows us here that there are more important things to God than just performing religious ceremonies and tithing. What does God value? Justice, mercy, and faithfulness. These are things that are more important to God than where you are sitting at on 10 am on Sunday morning. We also read in James 1:27 that, "Pure and undefiled religion in sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and keeping yourself unspotted from the world." God has such an amazing heart. He cares for the poor, the broken, the widows, the orphans, the widows, and all the "least of these." The question I want to ask you and myself is do my priorities and values match up with the heart of God? Am I more concerned about making it to Church on Sunday than I am about sex trafficking? Which one makes you more upset? When you hear someone say a "bad word" or when you see a widow being neglected? I don't say this to put a "guilt trip" on anybody. I'm actually just trying to point out something good about God. He is not boring. He cares more about starving orphans in Ethiopia than he does about you wearing a suit and tie on Sunday. Again, nothing wrong with any of these things. It is important to go to church, but there are more important things....
When we see what God values, it should create a desire in our heart to live in a way that is pleasing to him. I know for me, for a long time I was experiencing some discontentment with my Christian walk. It was not a feeling of guilt or "I'm not doing enough," it was a feeling of "I know that there is more to the Christian life than this." I mean I went to Church every time the doors were opened, and my wife and I tithed. We listened to good sermons, and were part of an amazing Church. But I was still experiencing a yearning for something more. The thought of the extent of my Christian experience would be just 50 more years of sermons just made me a little depressed. What is the point of me sitting here and listening to all these sermons if I'm not going to let it transform my life and act on it? I want to follow Jesus, not just hear a sermon about him.
I have a feeling that several of you are experiencing similar feelings. You know that God is calling you to do bigger things than just sit in a pew on Sunday. You know that you were meant for something more. For my wife and I, it meant moving to Kenya to work at an orphanage and serve 20 children that don't have a father and mother. We have been here for over 5 months now and I can honestly say I feel more fulfilled here than I did just sitting in a Church pew. God may be calling you to something similar, or something completely different. But don't settle for just "sitting on the sidelines," take a risk and seek to follow Jesus in every area of your life no matter what the cost. Once again, I'm not at all trying to imply that people are not doing enough. I'm just trying to write to the people out there that are feeling that something is missing in their walk with God. They are yearning for something more.
Deep calls to Deep. What deep calling has God given to you?