Study has a rightful place within our faith. Still, if I studied basketball and could pass a written test with top scores, that doesn't mean I'd have a place on a pro team. It doesn't even mean I could make a free throw, or score on the court rather than just on paper.
- We learn and teach about community. But do we make friends, and build traditions with our families? Do we know our neighbors? Do we have a reputation for hospitality?
- We learn and teach about forgiveness. But do we forgive? Are we known for being kind?
- We learn and teach about reconciliation. But do we reconcile with family members? Are there any people that, by unspoken agreement, we avoid each other -- or do we clear the air?
- We learn and teach about faith and hope. But do we encourage faith and hope to grow by looking at God's faithfulness and God's promises?
- We learn and teach about love. But how much time do we spend increasing our love by thinking about the goodness in someone else? How often do we remember the kindnesses someone has shown us?
If someone studies law, we expect them to practice law. If someone studies medicine, we expect them to practice medicine. If someone studies teaching, or plumbing, or any other useful thing, we expect them to practice it. This kind of learning is life-long; that's why there are continuing education programs for most jobs. And our churches are continuing education programs, in a sense. But if the Word of God is living and active, then it calls us to be living and active.