Articles by Stan Dean

A Lesson From Duck Church

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It is one thing to say that we are Christians, but quite another to demonstrate it. Even so, our actions must consistently match our words. James penned, “Someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works” (James 2:18). Thus, as the old adage goes, “We must not only talk the talk, we must also walk the walk.”

There was a 19th century philosopher and religious thinker named Soren Kierkegaard who left us this amazing little duck tale. It was told that the time had come for all the ducks to gather for duck church. So, ducks came from all over waddling their way to the assembly. They waddled in and sat down on their duck pews, sang from their duck hymnals, and settled back to listen to their duck preacher. (Some said that his sermon was recorded on duck tape-- although I think that was just a wise quack.)

Anyway, duck preacher delivered a powerful, feather-singeing sermon. His main point was: "Ducks, you don't have to waddle. You have wings like eagles. You can fly! Fly, ducks, fly!" In turn the congregation of ducks responded, "Amen! Amen!" Then, after the service concluded, all the ducks got up and waddled home.

Sounds a whole lot like some people I know. Often it is not “knowing what to do” that is the problem, it is “doing what we know” that creates the challenge. Simply acknowledging truth with an "Amen" is worthless if that truth does not become a part of the way we live.

Jesus made this point clear as He finished the Sermon on the Mount, concluding, "Whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rains descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock." He went on to say, “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall” (Matthew 7:24-27).

So, let us not be like the foolish duck church, but like the wise of Christ's Church who are "doers of the word, and not hearers only" (James 1:22).

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