6 Things You Won’t Hear In Church But Maybe You Should

6 Things You Won’t Hear In Church But Maybe You Should June 10, 2024

White plate with carrots and peas in the shape of a flower with fork resting on top right hand side of the plate
Eat your vegetables! [Image by congerdesign from Pixabay]
Welcome to church! Sit back and take in some words from the Good Book about things that happened or that were said two thousand years or so ago. This scenario greets current churchgoers every Sunday. But what if the sermon also contained pointed and practical words based on the Bible about specific things to do in everyday life today? Let’s consider six things you won’t hear in church but maybe you should.

Eat Your Vegetables

Surely as a child your mother told you to eat your vegetables. Guess what? Our Heavenly Father says the same thing. While no Bible verse states those specific words, His position is clear from the story of Daniel and the words of Bible verses giving general directives undeniably leading to that conclusion.

Food laws played a starring role in the laws governing the Israelites. Prohibitions against consuming certain animals such as pigs and shellfish, for example, affected their dietary habits, helping God’s people determine their menus on a day-to-day basis.

Daniel confronted the issue of what to eat as a young man in captivity in Babylon. Rather than partake of the rich food from the king’s table, he requested nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink as Daniel 1:12 relates.

While no account identifies what Daniel consumed, the Bible expressly states Daniel ate his veggies. And, surprise! He and his friends on that diet appeared healthier than the other young men eating the king’s food.

The New Testament, unlike the Old, contains no specific food commands. That lack, though, does not mean that what Christians eat doesn’t matter. In writing to the Corinthians, Paul emphasized that whatever believers do, expressly including what they eat, should be for the glory of God.  So what glorifies God then? Later in his epistle, Paul explains our bodies are temple of the Lord. We honor God when we eat food which builds up that temple. Daniel serves as poster boy for eating veggies to make your temple healthy.

Bearded man in blue shirt seen from the shoulders up stands in front of brick wall smiling
Smile! [Image by Jake Aldridge from Pixabay]


Having a picture taken isn’t the only time a Christian should smile. Jesus purchased our salvation through His death on the cross, and God loves us dearly. Isn’t that worth smiling about? Jesus told His followers they’d experience trouble on Earth, but not to worry because He’s overcome the world. Those words provide reason to smile even when the going gets tough. As Hebrews 13:5 reminds us, God stated He would never leave us or forsake us. He’s always with us. Isn’t that a good reason to smile?

Not only has God provided His children numerous reasons to smile, but Jesus commanded we do so. He directed us to let our light so shine that others could see Him in us. Isn’t someone’s demeanor one of the first, if not the first, thing we notice about others? As a non-believer, what would your thoughts about Christianity be if Christians you encountered didn’t usually smile? What’s appealing about a life lacking in smiles? So smile more.

Empty clear plastic cup with lid and straw floats in the water
Recycle–you won’t hear it in church, but maybe you should [Photo by Brian Yurasits on Unsplash]

On the third day of creation, God gathered the waters under the sky and called them seas. And looking at these waters, He deemed them good. Looking at the seas today, He may not reach the same conclusion. While the immensity of the waters and their beauty still speak of His creative power, what’s found in them today is disgraceful.

Man has polluted the seas God formed with his own creations such as plastic bottles and packaging. Scientists estimate over 171 trillion pieces of plastic are floating in the world’s oceans. Without corrective action, this amount of man-made pollution could triple by 2040. The pollution is not only ugly, but it’s lethal, killing fish and sea animals.

God didn’t make the world so man could mess it up. Be a good steward with His gift of the Earth. Recycle!

Small brown dog receives a pet on the head by an unseen individual kneeling in the grass
Be Kind To Animals [Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay]

Be Kind To Animals

From the beginning God envisioned man having a relationship with animals. In fact, in Genesis 1:28 He placed Adam in charge of all the fish in the sea, birds in the sky, and creatures moving on the ground. Adam’s duties included naming all of God’s creatures. Adam and his descendants served in an overseer/caretaker role. But how are humans handling this God-given role today?

According to the Humane Society of the US, a “shocking” number of animal cruelty cases are reported daily, although the authorities don’t compile statistics on such crimes. Cruelty can range from actual physical abuse, to using animals in sports causing them injury or death (dogfighting, for example), and hoarding (where animals are deprived of sufficient food, water, and attention).

God did not intend for man to use his position of authority over animals to abuse them. God is an animal lover. Why even a sparrow doesn’t fall without His notice and concern. Being kind to animals includes providing adequate care for pets, reporting incidents of abuse to authorities, and supporting organizations which assist animals with our gifts of time, money, or helpful items (such as a bag of dogfood).

Young woman in light long-sleeve shirt with her hand up to her ear as if listening
Are you listening for and to God? [Image by Robin Higgins from Pixabay]

Put Your Listening Ears On

Parents expect their children to listen to them. My mother conveyed that expectation when she told me, “Put your listening ears on.”

Moses familiarly said to God’s children in Deuteronomy 5:1, “Hear, O Israel,” referring to God’s laws which he spoke to them that day. But neither my mother, God, or Moses would be satisfied with their words simply being heard. What all three desired was for the hearers to pay attention to what they said and then act accordingly. Add pastors preaching to their congregation to those who want their hearers to have “listening ears” on.

Many who attend church are just occupying a pew while taking in the sound of God’s word being read or a sermon being preached. But their listening ears aren’t being utilized as their mind wanders to various topics (where to eat lunch after church?) other than what God wants them to hear. We could all use the admonition to pay attention, more kindly expressed as “Put your listening ears on.”

Twp people (only hands shown) on their cell phones
Do you pick up your phone way more than your Bible? [Image by Dean Moriarty from Pixabay]

Put Down Your Phone And Pick Up Your Bible

Estimate how much time you spend on your phone each day whether talking, texting, or scrolling through social media. Now compare that figure to how much time you spend reading your Bible. (You do read it, right?) It’s easy to guess where we spend more of our time.

Sadly, although a large percentage of American households own a Bible, more than half of Americans have read little of the Good Book. Why not? The biggest excuses are lack of prioritizing the activity and being too busy. Do you prioritize answering your phone? Are you eager to receive communication from friends and loved ones? If so, why don’t you communicate with God in the same way? He’s waiting to talk to you through the words found in the Bible.

The psalmist in Psalm 119:16 stated he would not neglect God’s word. Can you say the same thing? Perhaps a wake-up call in church is needed to tell people to put down their phones and pick up their Bible.

What Isn’t Said But Should Be

Believers hear many messages in church. But messages not heard may be just as important and should be voiced. What you won’t hear in church but maybe you should include “Eat Your Vegetables,” “Smile,” “Recycle,” “Be Kind To Animals,” “Put Your Listening Ears On,” and “Put Down Your Phone And Pick Up Your Bible.” How the Christian community and the world it lives in might change if these things were said in church and then acted upon.


About Alice H Murray
After 35 years as a Florida adoption attorney, Alice H. Murray now pursues a different path as Operations Manager for End Game Press. With a passion for writing, she is constantly creating with words. Her work includes contributions to several Short And Sweet books, The Upper Room, Chicken Soup For The Soul, Abba’s Lessons (from CrossRiver Media), and the Northwest Florida Literary Review. Alice is a regular contributor to GO!, a quarterly Christian magazine in the Florida Panhandle, and she has three devotions a month published online by Dynamic Women in Missions. Her devotions have also appeared in compilation devotionals such as Ordinary People Extraordinary God (July 2023) and Guideposts’ Pray A Word A Day, Vol. 2 (June 2023) and pray a word for Hope (September 2023). Alice’s first book, The Secret of Chimneys, an annotated Agatha Christie mystery, was released in April 2023 with a second such book, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, to be released in April 2025. On a weekly basis, Alice posts on her blog about current events with a humorous point of view at aliceinwonderingland.wordpress.com. You can read more about the author here.

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