What can I do to catch God’s attention? What do I need to do so that I will go to heaven when I die? What do I need to do so that I will feel good about my life? More times than not when we think about our relationship with God or when we think about changes that we want to see come about in our lives, we think about “doing” more than we think about “believing.” What do I need to do?
Evidently this tendency in us has been around for a long time. The people of Jesus’ day asked Him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus could have told them to make sure they went to church every week, never miss an opportunity to feed the hungry, make it a habit to visit the sick, and evangelize, spread the Good News of what God has done through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. All of the followers of Jesus are to do the very things that I’ve just listed, but there is something that precedes all of these. Jesus said, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”
In our “make-something-happen” world folks roll their eyes at contemplation, meditation, prayer, and study. The truth of the matter is that what I invest my heart, time, and money in flows from who I am and what I believe more than it does my energy or commitment level. If I believe, not just give mental ascent to, but really believe that Jesus is who He claims to be then His words become more important to me than life itself. Whatever Jesus says becomes a mandate for my life if I truly believe in Him. When Jesus says, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15 NIV) This becomes my mission in life. Believing is more important than doing because what I believe shapes my behavior.
My prayer today, Lord, is that I would believe so strongly that my life would accurately demonstrate my love and devotion to you.