Tradition can be a double-edged sword. It can be both comforting and reassuring to have something firm in an unstable world, but it can also be an anchor which weighs us down in the past.
Jesus took the Pharisees to task for that very reason. They were following their traditions to the exclusion of following God. “And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”” Mark 7:6-8 ESV
The problem was that they let their traditions take the place of God’s word. They were so focused on keeping traditions that they no longer worried about what God had said. They taught as doctrines the commandments of men. They kept the traditions, and that made them feel good, but they were disobeying God.
We can easily fall into the same pattern. We can get so focused on doing what we have always done that we grow complacent. We can think all is good when in truth we are no longer obeying God. How sad if it can be said of us that we honor God with our lips, but our heart is far from Him. Let us obey Him with our whole heart and not just give him lip service.