Show by your good life that your works are done with gentleness born of wisdom... the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy.As I wrote in my book, "What On Earth Is Going On? Spiritually Speaking," it seems to me that James gives us some pretty pointed ideas about what our goals are if we want to walk The Way of Christ. He makes it clear that being mean-spirited, controlling or harsh are not on the list. He insists that we are to participate in life by doing good works.
So what's up with the angry contingent of people who call themselves Christian,or the people who don't even try and stop the quest? Full-bodied, full-throated followers exhibit the qualities James mentioned and I wrote above.
We would do well to check ourselves out, and make a shift or 2 where needed.
- What does my life show to others?
- Am I gentle because I have listened and seek wisdom?
- Is the wisdom I seek spiritual?
- Does the wisdom I seek lead to peace?
- Is it gentle?
- Am I stiff necked, or am I willing to yield?
- Am I full of mercy?
- Do I produce good fruits regularly?
- Am I free of partiality?
- Am I free of hypocrisy?
An honest self-check, done regularly, can be a big help to move us forward on our journey.
I pray that soon, many, many people will have affirmative answers to James' list.