Will you follow through?

A basketball coach will instruct his team members: “Follow through on your free throws! Follow your shot!” These two commands and others with similar instruction, spring from a principle of athletics that says what you do after an action or decision to begin with. Following through in arm motion can affect the direction of a shot or pitch. Following a shot may help a player get an important rebound, etc.

Spiritually, the principle of following through is just as vital. God wants us to do something just as surely as we hear and commit to it. James 1:22, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” And, God wants works that cooperate with our faith (James 2:19-26). So let us think of some practical ways this principle can be applied in all aspects of our lives, and let’s do that by asking some important questions:

 Will you follow through by confessing Jesus as your Lord everyday, by the life that you live? “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven (Matthew 10:32-33).

 Will you follow through by teaching someone the gospel that was taught to you and resulted in your salvation? “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes . . . “ (Romans 1:16).

 Will you follow through by paying the financial debts that you have accumulated and pledged to pay? Ecclesiastes 5:4-5: “When you make a vow to God, do not delay in fulfilling it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. It is better not to vow than to make a vow and not fulfill it.”

 So will you follow through by giving back to God a rightful portion of that which He has so richly blessed you? “But just as you excel in everything — in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness, and in your love for us — see that you also excel in the grace of giving” (2 Corinthians 8:7).

 Will you follow through by preparing yourself to be able to answer anyone who asks you a reason of your hope? “But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (1 Peter 3:15).

 Will you follow through by being a friend at all times and encourage your brothers and sisters? “A friend loves at all times” (Proverbs 17:17a). “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn” (Romans 12:15).

 Will you follow through by praying to God regularly? “Pray continually” (1 Thess. 5:17).

 Will you follow through by being willing to die for God’s cause? “Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Romans 2:10b).

— f r o m an article by Lance Cordle, Calvert City church of Christ, Calvert City, KY

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