I’m doing a kindness experiment of saying “hello” or “hey” to 25 strangers a day for 30 days. I’m on day 11 and have acknowledged the presence of over 250 strangers so far. I’ve experienced the immediate results for such actions as feeling good about doing this, making people smile, lifting peoples’ spirits, and connecting with strangers. I told a friend recently, “This is what life is about! It’s about freely showing kindness and serving others.” But there’s a damning and subtle lie in that comment.
Since inception of this social experiment, I haven’t once read my scriptures, prayers have been lazy at best, and basically neglecting the worship of my Creator. So even though I’m getting this “high” of showing kindness and serving, I know I’m missing something holy. I’ve heard many people say, “I believe we just need to do good and be good. The thing with God doesn’t really matter.”
But to our God and Creator it does matter! That’s why He says the first and great commandment is to, “…love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” Then, and only then does God say, “And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. (Matt 22:37-39).
I believe Satan sometimes will tempt us to focus on just one. He tempts us to focus on the logistics of worship or service alone, handing us a gift card to a fancy restaurant for our labors. We enjoy our expensive meal only to find there was a zero balance on the gift card. We were fooled into believing the logistics of our worship or service alone would give us a fully loaded gift card. Righteous worship according to God’s laws gives us the gift card. Our personal ministry of service loads the card with funds for us to use.
Worship alone won’t save. Service alone won’t save. It’s the combination of the two great commandments that saves.