A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Have It With the Works (Faith, That Is)

Posted on: April 25, 2013

As a mother, I know that “do as I say, not as I do” just won’t cut it. For instance, if I want my son to respect others and be kind, he has to see me treat people with respect and kindness no matter what kind of day I’m having.

That seems obvious, doesn’t it? But how many of us tell our children that they need to follow the rules—and then roll through stop signs or drive over the speed limit? How many say smoking is harmful—and then light up a cigarette?

“Putting your money where your mouth is.” “Walking your talk.” No matter what expression we use, it’s a daily challenge to make sure our words and actions line up with our beliefs.

While the media often report on the marital problems, tax headaches and addictions of actors, musicians and others in the public eye, we don’t have to be famous to deal with these issues. And as we see in the news and in the Bible, even religious leaders have their struggles. For example, we read in Matthew 23 that Jesus denounced the scribes and Pharisees for being more concerned about their social standing than the state of their souls. Since even the people we look to for moral guidance find it challenging to match their actions to their beliefs, it’s not surprising that we do too.

That’s where the sacraments of reconciliation and the Eucharist come in: we confess our sins, receive forgiveness, and then receive Jesus in the bread and the wine so that we’re strengthened to become more like him every day. Which means growing in the fruit of the Spirit—“love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23*)—and letting these qualities shine through our actions.

The book of James has a lot to say about living as a Christian, and we read in James 2:18, 26 that faith and good works go hand in hand:

Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith.

For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so faith apart from works is dead.

Here are a few areas where we could use our time, money and/or talent to put feet to our faith:

  • shelter, food or clothing for those in need
  • assistance to immigrants adjusting to life in Canada
  • friendly visits to a seniors’ or veterans’ residence or a children’s hospital
  • support for those dealing with disability, illness, or addiction recovery
  • help for those escaping domestic violence
  • microloans to small businesses here and in other countries
  • sponsorship of children in need
  • fundraising to fight a disease

Over the past few months, one area where I’ve been trying to live out my faith is in support for pro-life activities. I’d just like to mention that people can sponsor a hiker or walk in the Hike for Life on April 27th and that the National March for Life is coming up on May 9th.

I’d love to hear how you put your faith into action. If you stop by to leave a comment, I invite you to visit my resources page as well.

(*Quotes from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition.)


Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

Please enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by e-mail.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Recent Posts


World Listening Post

An International Music Blog by Alan Tigay

Write the Next Song

A songwriting blog for tips, tricks, motivation and inspiration

TED Blog

The TED Blog shares news about TED Talks and TED Conferences.

roses near running waters

Just a Catholic wife & mama living a life full of wonder

WordPress.com News

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

%d bloggers like this: