Actions and Reactions
Pastor A. W. Weckeman – October 2013
(Where the rubber meets the road)
If you want to get to know someone (including yourself), you have to look beyond their (your) actions, beyond how they (you) project themselves (yourself) in a social setting. The deceptive nature of ungodly reactions is revealed in the fact that they are often found in people whose actions, at least on the surface, are consistently correct and proper.
Most of us who have been saved many years have it down; we dress right, talk right, and act right (at least when in the presence of other believers).
Remember: “…the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” (1 Sam.16:7)
Getting down to the nitty-gritty
There are TWO telltale signs, valid indicators of a person’s character:
The first is seen by how a person acts when no one’s looking. This can be a profitable revelation to the honest heart, a revealing moment whereby we are convicted and corrected by our hypocrisy.
The second is their unrehearsed reactions (overlooked by them, evident to others). Carnal responses reveal the actual content of the heart, “…for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” (Matt.12:34).
The natural tendency of the “old man” is to defend or justify a snap reaction through rationalization. The “obnoxious” person who prompted my response is the problem, not me! The seriousness of such self-deception is found in Job 26:4 “…whose spirit came from thee?
A little honest self-examination in these areas can reveal major hindrances to spiritual growth (sanctification); undetected “strongholds” (Consider, 2 Cor. 10:4-5).
“Were a person to watch (only) my actions, he wouldn’t really know me. My actions would not reveal to him what I really am because my actions might be planned and practiced for his benefit.”
“However, my reactions—my spontaneous, unconscious, unscheduled reactions; they reveal what (who) I really am.”
“Our reactions to the situations we face daily may say a great deal more about us than our actions. Fact is wrong reactions can hurt us as much as wrong actions—perhaps even more so?”
“A person who prides himself on his right actions may truthfully say, “I don’t lie, I don’t cheat, I don’t swear, I don’t get drunk, I don’t commit adultery.” His actions are correct and proper, yet he may be utterly defeated by his wrong reactions to life’s (trying) situations and other people’s actions.”
“Your Reactions are Showing” J. Allan Petersen
Consider the elder brother of the “prodigal son” (Luke 15:25-32). Spontaneous wrong reactions reveal the real you, exposing a wrong heart in the process.
“For a cup brimful of sweet water cannot spill even one drop of bitter water, however suddenly jolted.” Amy Carmichael
“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Ps.139:23-24).
“WE WILL REMAIN THE SAME UNTIL THE PAIN OF REMAINING THE SAME BECOMES GREATER THAN THE PAIN OF CHANGE.” Unknown