“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves.  Do what it says.”  (James 1:22, NIV)

Information.  Inspiration.  Perspiration.

Information is knowledge.  God presents every person with the information that leads to life and peace.

Inspiration is the desire to act on that information.  It is the bright light of revelation.   It is the “I get it” moment.  The devil attacks at the moment of inspiration to delay our engagement, because delay brings doubts; and doubts always conspire against truth and reality.

Perspiration is the work of taking information — fueled by inspiration — to reality. Information and inspiration without perspiration is akin to having a construction blueprint and all building materials at hand, but never breaking ground.  Nothing of either temporal or eternal value is established or sustained without perspiration.

Get informed.  Get motivated.  Get to work.  – Luther

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“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”  (James 1:19-20, NIV)

There is not a more succinct statement of what the disciple of Jesus should aspire than what we read in today’s scripture.

Whomever first uttered the bromide: “The reason God gave us two ears and one mouth is that we should listen twice as much as we talk,” was on to something.  We all should major in listening and minor in speaking!

When you “listen” with every sense the Lord has given you, you will see what others do not see; you will hear what others cannot hear; and when you are compelled to speak, your sentences will convey the wisdom of God.  – Luther


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“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.”  (James 1:12, NIV)

The disciple of Jesus receives a test as a good thing.

Although times of examination are seldom pleasant, the outcome of testing reveals the nature of the stuff we’re made.  Only the person who has persevered under trial knows — really knows — the stuff of which he or she is made.  Without testing, we’re just guessing.

To “pass” a test of our spiritual selves requires only perseverance.  We need not persevere perfectly, but we do need to persevere faithfully.

The strength to persevere comes when we keep ours eyes fixed on Christ under even the most difficult of circumstances.  Doing so assures capital “L” Life for us.  We apprehend it in no other way.  – Luther

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