A. Exercise and Practice Are Essential to Physical Development.
Athletes & musicians know they must exercise and practice to improve.
Developing skills requires continual repetition: playing a song, throwing pitches, shooting baskets.
Athletes run, lift weights, and practice hour after hour in order to grow strong and develop endurance.
Illustration: A man once had an apartment next to a professional cello player. He thought it must be exciting to play in an orchestra. Then he listened as the man practiced the scales, exercises, and songs endlessly.
Children practice skills over and over to learn them.
Children learning to walk try again and again. They are proud to learn a new word, then they use it till they drive you crazy! They want to play the same thing over and over: play the same tape recording, put the clothes on a doll.
Parents encourage children to repeat what they must learn: drill math facts, spelling, reading, piano. They get tired, but we encourage them because that’s how they learn.
“Practice makes perfect” – or at least it promotes improvement.
B. Exercise and Practice Are Essential to Spiritual Growth.
Hebrews 5:14 – Those who are of full age, by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. Growth requires exercise as well as nourishment.
1 Timothy 4:7 – Exercise yourself toward godliness.
Like children, athletes, and musicians, we must work again and again at applying Bible principles to become effective in the Lord’s work.
To learn to TEACH, we must do it repeatedly: teach your children, home studies, Bible classes, preach sermons, again and again.
To learn to LEAD SINGING, practice songs at home, sing with your family, lead during church meetings over and over.
To understand the BIBLE, study it again and again, talk to others, drill yourself, memorize. Get in and dig.
To learn to PRAY, do it over and over.
Kids may not be good at activities at first, but parents encourage them to do it over and over. Likewise, older members must encourage the newer ones to use their talents. They may not be skilled at first, but they learn by doing.
We need to encourage teachers, preachers, and song leaders. Don’t complain. Surely don’t stay home. They need the practice!