2021 Fast Day Eight

Day #8


James 1:19-27 MSG “Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. God’s righteousness doesn’t grow from human anger. So throw all spoiled virtue and cancerous evil in the garbage. In simple humility, let our gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation-garden of your life. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like. But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action. Anyone who sets himself up as “religious” by talking a good game is self-deceived. This kind of religion is hot air and only hot air. Real religion, the kind that passes muster before God the Father, is this: Reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight, and guard against corruption from the godless world.”


8 days into our 21 day fast and we should be developing a spiritual hunger for more.  There’s a common phrase these days among millenials; “Say less.” It means a couple of things, “I understand, or do more instead of just talking about doing things.” Well, the heading at the top of these verses in James, definitely could have been “Say Less“. In essence, James is working us over in these 8 verses. First of all, he begins with “post this at ALL THE INTERSECTIONS, let your ears lead.” We could have closed the book right there today! We have 2 ears and 1 mouth for a reason. We desperately need to get this. We should listen double the amount we talk. And not just hearing. Hearing is simply the act of perceiving sound by the ear. Listening, however, is something you consciously choose to do. Listening requires concentration so that your brain processes meaning from words and sentences. The Bible says, we have a lot of hearers of The Word, but few doers. We have to be listeners. Christians who are processing the meaning of The Word of God and allowing it to transform us. We don’t want to be all talk in any way, shape, or form. And we definitely don’t want to be all talk and like the person James describes who is a distracted scatterbrain or talks so much that we deceive our own selves into thinking we are someone we aren’t. Have mercy! We want to be those whose slogan could be “Say Less.” because our life speaks for itself. Men and Women of God whose actions speak louder than our words! Today, pull out all the stops and be that!

Consecration: Hearing

You probably thought we were going to consecrate talking today right? Well, if we consecrate hearing then we will consecrate talking at the same time. Today, every time you are tempted to fake listen, call yourself on the freaking carpet. Even in the smallest conversations. The ones where you are on your phone and pretending to listen, but you’re really only hearing. The ones where you are uninterested completely but don’t have the heart to tell the other person. The ones where your mind is in an hundred other places and you have no clue what the other person is saying. Or the ones where your kids have to repeat what they asked you three times. Yes, all of those! We are going to LISTEN today. You are going to zone in on everything that is said to you today and take it in. Fight the urge to be distracted, and please fight the urge to talk over people. It’s a really ugly habit. I believe that if we can honor the people around us by listening, then we will be able to fine tune our ears to actually listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit. This is going to be good. Let’s LISTEN!