With what shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the High God? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God? —Micah 6:6–8
One of my many pet peeves—and I have a few—is when someone from my past says something about me having “found religion” or that they heard I had become “religious.” According to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, the word religion is defined as “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices.” Though there are attitudes, beliefs, and practices we need to adhere to, that’s not what God requires of us. Micah says the Lord requires that we do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.
Have you ever been around one of those people who make you careful of what you say or do, someone of great respect or importance that you want to make a good impression on? If you are sharing a meal with such a person, you carefully monitor the way you eat and the way you sit. You are on your best behavior and worry about having a piece of lettuce stuck to your front tooth when talking. Or maybe you have been around one of those people who just make you want to be and do better. I am sure we have all had those kinds of encounters.
Micah says what God really wants from us is for us to walk with Him and love what He loves—not observe a bevy of religious requirements. But we so often overcomplicate things and, like the Israelites, add all kinds of stuff to just walking with God.
What does the Lord require of you today? Just to walk with Him, which is quite humbling when you are just and merciful like Him. Don’t get all religious today, but just walk humbly in your relationship with Jesus. He wants to walk with you too!
Excerpt from “Body Builders” now available on Amazon.