On a typical Sunday morning, you and your family listen to a sermon taught by a very eloquent pastor. You love his passion for Christ and enthusiasm for what he does. When you get home after church, you don’t make any changes to your personal life or plan to grow in areas that you may be weak in, such as disciple-making. The Word of God can be life-changing if you are a good steward of it. It’s a daily choice, whether you will live for self or live for Christ.
Sadly, this story is all too common in our culture today. It’s easy for Christians in America especially to sit back into our “comfort zones” and listen to a sermon, not being diligent to focus on areas that we need to grow in. That’s where progressive sanctification, also known as “putting the Bible into action” comes in to play! We have a great privilege that, once we’re saved, to daily live out what we’re called to do and be.
Did you know that you can prepare a meal, do lawn work, and help a neighbor repair a car as acts of worship? Everything you do can be and should be acts of worship (I Cor. 10:31).
After a sermon when your pastor preaches on a general topic, dig specifically into your heart and look for opportunities to serve others. Ask yourself how you can specifically apply this biblical principle into your life this week. Sundays should be the time of week where your strengthened in your walk with Christ. Let the sermon encourage you to continue living your life for the Lord.
Here’s an example of a typical scenario of a man who is diligent to apply biblical principles to his everyday life:
This week’s sermon is about how anger can be life-devastating and if not kept under check, can hurt others. After the pastor reads Ephesians 4:26, which warns Christians to not let the sun go down on their anger, the pastor describes how Christians feel guilty after they sin and they can’t get it off their chest unless the proper repentance occurs. As Mike listens to the sermon, he’s thinking hard about the past few days he’s spent with his family. Once, his children made him angry by accidentally spilling a full glass of orange juice on his nice suit and tie right before Mike went to work. Not only did Mike have to change suits seconds before he would go “on the clock,” but also his first suit and tie were ruined with orange stains running from top to bottom. After Mike had a sinful outburst of anger at the child who accidentally tipped the glass, his conscience somehow felt worse instead of better. He changed his clothes and had time to cool down and to reflect. He went and asked forgiveness of those he had harmed with his tongue as soon as he recognized by the Spirit’s conviction of what he had done. He then sought ways to serve them demonstrating a heart of repentance. It was a sinful situation that God redeemed for His glory and it brought the family closer after repentance and practical application of God’s Word occurred.
We all need God’s grace. Thankfully, we can learn from any situation as long as we remain teachable and apply God’s Word to our hearts. Psalm 119:11 says: Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against You.
-Mark and Rachel (living in grace to apply the Word to our hearts daily)