Mondays are not the best days for car trouble. One morning I hopped in my car and inserted the key in the ignition. When I cranked it—I kid you not—the car made the sound: “Ugh.”
So I pulled out the jumper cables. But two days later, the car sang the second verse of the same song: “Ugghhh.”
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Later that day, my auto mechanic gave a simple diagnosis: I needed a new battery.
Now, I could have said: “Hey, you know, a car starting every other day isn’t so bad. It sure beats walking. I guess I don’t need a battery.” Guess again. I bought a battery—a big one. If my vehicle runs inconsistently, it’s of little value to me. At the same time, keeping the car running reliably comes down to one thing.
It costs me.
The same is true of our spiritual lives.
When Spiritual Consistency Lacks
Without spiritual consistency, we’re like a car that starts every other day. What good is that?
The Bible asks the same question of us:
What good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.—James 2:15-17
We may never say it, but often we live with the credo: “I’ll trust Jesus for my eternal life, but my daily life is my business.” The Bible says that such a faith, while perhaps a true one, is “useless” and “worthless” (James 2:20, 26).
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The Benefit of Spiritual Consistency
On the other hand, spiritual consistency has a HUGE benefit. When we demonstrate our faith in good works, the world takes notice and God is glorified:
Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. —Matthew 5:16
Ironic, isn’t it? Good works have nothing to do with becoming a Christian, but good works have everything to do with living like one. God has even prepared in advance good works for us to do (Ephesians 2:8-10).
What Spiritual Consistency Costs Us
It is expected of us when we say, “I’m a Christian,” that we model it consistently before others. Not perfection. Consistency.
But spiritual consistency costs. In regard to my car, it cost me a battery. In regard to our faith, the costs are pricier:
- Again, spiritual consistency doesn’t mean we’re perfect, but it does mean we’re honest. It costs us our pride as we confess our sins to God and to one another (1 John 1:9; James 5:16).
- It costs us some sleep, as we get up perhaps 30 minutes earlier to make our relationship with God our priority each day (Proverbs 8:34-35; Mark 1:35).
- Spiritual consistency costs us the daily sacrificing of our own wills and selfish desires (Romans 6:13, 16, 19; 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:20; Hebrews 13:15).
- It takes living the truth in daily, diligent, and faithful obedience (Ephesians 4:1; 1 Peter 2:11).
These costs are huge investments, to be sure. But spiritual consistency is worth the cost.
Daily faith does us no good just sitting in the driveway. It must run.
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