Prayer: Heavenly Father, help us to see our faith as one of learning and action. Amen.
Reading: James 1:17-27 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: Sometimes our study of scripture leads us down some very hard discussions. In this case it comes from James, because it shows us that our faith is more than merely listening and bettering our own lives. When I was in seminary, my fellow students seemed to have an aversion to James because James called us to action. You see, James tells us that we are to "be doers of the word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves." Many of my classmates didn't like this since they thought it was saying that we needed to do something to earn our right to be Christians.
I have come to learn that when we have faith that is truly alive, we want to act out that faith. We believe in Jesus Christ, so what now? We act out our faith. This happens in loving, caring, Christian conversations in our work and home lives. This happens in helping the needy at the food bank. This happens in so many other ways that cause us to think about others before ourselves.
How are you putting your faith into action? How does what you believe show to others? --Peter Horn, Camp Mount Luther Board Member and Summer Camp Pastor
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