For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. (Gal. 5:6)

WITH GROCERY LIST IN HAND, I make a mad dash through the store each week. I fly through the aisles, grabbing the things I need off the shelves and pushing my cart while I’m reading the next item on the list. At times I am so focused on my list, I nearly run into another customer or knock over a display. Everyone in the store would be a lot better off if I would look up from my list to see what is going on around me!

Too often we are focused on our own “list” of what a good Christian needs to do. With blinders on to all that’s around us, we worry about our own checklist: attending church every time it’s open, reading our Bible every day, tithing faithfully, and on and on. All these activities are good, but if we do them because we are trying to check them off our list, we have missed the point of having faith.

In faith we accept Christ’s sacrifice so we are free from the stress of trying to keep a list of rules. In our freedom, we are to express our faith through love. If we are so consumed with paying attention to our own set of religious laws, we will miss opportunities to express love to those around us.

Express your faith through love instead of acting enslaved to your list of dos and don’ts.

Rachel Schmoyer is a pastor’s wife, mom of four, and has a degree from Cairn University. She enjoys biographies of the First Ladies.