“Action without reflection is meaningless action.” I wish I knew the source of this quote, shared with me years ago as “from the mystics of old” – because the truths encapsulated within these profound words are worth both our pondering and our application. Flip this statement upside down and the underside is also true: “Reflection without action is meaningless reflection.”
Reflection at its finest should manifest itself in action. Otherwise, it’s navel gazing and insular and left to linger unattended. Attending to the soul by way of contemplation is what leads thoughtful believers into intentional service to others. The Great Commandment—loving God with heart, soul, mind and strength—plus the Second Great Commandment—loving our neighbor as ourselves—is what leads us outward into the Great Commission—as we go, making disciples of all nations.
The Christian community at its healthiest incorporates a balanced approach to our spirituality. Love for God, love for others in the family of God, and love for our unreached neighbors. When we ponder the reality of each aspect of our faith, we are led into further reflection and ultimately into more meaningful action.
Where will your head and your heart lead your hands in service to another? Offer someone a cup of cold water in Jesus’ name today, it’s good for your soul.
This entry also appears on the Conversations Journal Blog.