“Do as I say, not as I do” may be a common saying, but most people understand that the greatest leaders are those whose actions match their words. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “Don’t say things. What you are stands over you the while, and thunders so that I cannot hear what you say to the contrary” (Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Letters and Social Aims,” https://oll.libertyfund.org/title/emerson-the-works-of-ralph-waldo-emerson-vol-8-letters-and-social-aims). This truth is also illustrated in James 1:22: “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” Our goal as believers should be that our actions match our talk. Our testimony loses credibility if we speak of love but don’t love; if we speak of forgiveness but hold unforgiveness in our heart; if we speak of generosity but live in a selfish and stingy manner; or if we speak of faithfulness but live a life of unfaithfulness.
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