Practice What’s Been Preached

Posted by John Lindsay on 27th December 2011 in Christian Articles

There’s no arguing that people enjoy doing what they’re good at, but no one gets good at anything without practice. The same holds true for us as followers of Jesus. If we find walking with our Lord difficult, it’s probably because we haven’t been practicing. Does anyone honestly, deliberately rehearse going the speed limit or maintaining a calm demeanor or smiling without cause? We’ve all practiced merging into traffic, but are we experts at allowing others to merge in before us? If we’re not trained for the minor pressures of the day’s most common occurrences, how can we expect to be adequately prepared for the weight of loving our enemy when that opportunity arises?

The hardest thing about any kind of disciplined routine is getting started. The best thing about doing something for the first time is you only have to do it once. Why not start with a smile. Don’t wait. Do it now. Don’t miss the opportunity. Hold a smile through the next sentence or two. If you’ve accepted the challenge, you’re doing great. Anybody can laugh or smile at a joke, but that’s not practice, that’s a knee-jerk reaction. It’s interesting how difficult it is to maintain a smile and consider destructive unproductive thoughts at the same time.

If you’re still smiling, you’re probably ready for opposing traffic. We’ve all bragged about driving a distance quickly, but have we ever bored an audience with an anecdote where the hero maintained his composure in spite of the reckless jockeying that diseases our highways? For a challenge, the next time you drive, make a conscious effort to do the following three things:

  1. Stay on or under the speed limit for at least one minute.
  2. If a light changes to yellow, instead of accelerating (endangering your life and the lives of others) choose to stop.
  3. Look for someone to let in front of you.

The added twist is to do this without a destination. Go out for a practice run. Ride around town with the sole purpose of being considerate. It’ll give a whole new meaning to the term “joy ride”. This new year, let’s practice what’s been preached with an assured expectation that your walk will soon abound with increased joy and peace.

To those with no vision, the retreat will be more appealing than the fight.

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