Recently I came across a great quote that said, ‘Unapplied truth is like paint. It doesn’t do anybody any good until it is applied.’ What a great word picture to illustrate what can happen to long-time followers of Jesus if we are not careful.
A pattern I have observed in my own life, and the lives of people that follow Jesus around me, is that we can drift from active painters to passive paint collectors as time goes on if we are not careful.
The change we experience from trusting Jesus with something – our time, the outcome of a relationship, sacrificial giving, saying no to an opportunity that may lead us down a path we think is unwise – is so big at the beginning of our faith journey. It can feel like our world is constantly shifting around us. All this comes from us hearing truth and applying it to our lives immediately.
Then overtime the truth starts to sound repetitive, some of what we try fails, we come face to face with our own inadequacies or sinfulness, and the eagerness to apply what we hear gives way to acceptance of where we are. Our thinking towards God begins to shift and, apart from the occasional leap of faith during trying times, we begin to opt for shelving truth.
And after a while we look in the mirror only to realise that we have a shed full of paint and an unpainted house.
If this is you, would you do me a favour. Take a piece of truth out of the shed, get a paint brush, and apply some this week. See if it makes a difference.
Hopefully a little application now, will lead to some much-needed changes in the future.
Josh has been on staff at Lesmurdie Baptist Church since 2018. He is married to Marnel and they have 4 children together - Azaliah, Ezra, Zoelle, and Zion. What drives Josh is seeing people put their faith into action so Jesus can change lives in the here and now.