What is the relationship between faith and actions?Otis Rodgers October 10, 2019 0 COMMENTS
Any faith that does not have actions is dead, that’s what St. James tells us in the Bible. So we can believe in God, but if we believe that God is love, that God gave his only Son for our sake, that he sacrificed so much, how can we live without sacrificing for each other? If we really believe that God loves the human race that much, can we really live as if we are alone? As if the only thing that matters is ourself? So if we believe in the love and kindness,
and the mercy that God has for the human person, then I think to believe is to reflect that mercy. To also be willing to sacrifice, to consider the happiness of other people as equally important to your own. So in that sense, faith without works is dead, because it’s just an abstract faith in notions of God, but it doesn’t spring into action. There’s a great saying by the Russian writer Fyodor Dostoevsky. He says it’s easy to love the human race:
let’s just say I love everyone. But it’s so difficult to love that one person next to me. That one person who is annoying, that one person in the street perhaps who smells. And that is exactly what we are about. Because I cannot save the entire human race. I don’t have to, Jesus already did. And I cannot feed every hungry person in the world, I cannot shelter every homeless person in the world. But I can ask myself: who do I see in the street? Who do I meet in my life? What can I do to help that person? And if they’re not around, then maybe I should ask myself: am I looking close enough? Because everywhere, people suffer, in so many ways, and it’s so tragic. Imagine the difference we can make as a Church, because there are so many of us. And if we all make that little difference, what a change we are in the world, what a force for good we are.