James 2:14-17 (NIV): What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
Yesterday, our pastor delivered a children's sermon that made a lot of sense - a sermon that I think many of us either don't realize, or don't recall. A sermon that, in my opinion, puts these verses of James 2 in a proper light.
He started by showing the children a lightbulb. This, he said, is faith. He then twisted the bulb into a light socket and turned it on. The light shown brightly. This, he said, is faith.
God gives us faith... we are to use that faith. Otherwise, it has no light, it's just an empty bulb.
In Luke, chapter 17, we have the apostles asking the Lord to increase their faith. But, the thing is... they already have faith. They need to use that faith. Using this faith is what makes it shine - it's what gives is strength. Our God-given faith is the lightbulb - our utilization of this faith is the electricity which makes it shine.
I'm sure you all remember the song many of us sang as children (and one which I teach our Sunday School kids) "This Little Light of Mine"...
Will you let your light shine? Will you let your faith shine? Will you use the faith and grace and love given to you by our Lord, and let that faith, grace and love shine on those in need?