What is faith?
I asked last time: do you expect your faith to work?
So, if you expect it to work, where have you placed it?
First, let’s see what faith is.
Our English dictionaries define faith as unquestioning belief without proof, complete confidence or trust in a person, thing, or God, being loyal to a person, promise, oath, or allegiance, and so on.
The New Testament uses one word for faith and means firm persuasion, moral conviction as of religious truth, especially reliance upon Christ for salvation.
I love these quotes about faith…
* “Faith is believing in something when common sense tells you not to.” Miracle on 34th Street
* “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
* “Faith is to believe what we do not see, and the reward of this faith is to see what we believe.” St. Augustine
Faith is expressed by an act of the will. It is not conjured up by feelings.
Where is your faith?
While we sometimes put our trust in people or ourselves, faith is wholly trusting in the characteristics of God’s nature. He is the object of our faith, “so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.” (1 Cor. 2:5 NIV)
If we believe God exists, then we have faith that He is what He says He is. We trust and have confidence in Him, leaning the whole weight of our lives upon what His Word says, knowing He is faithful to carry it out.
Jesus told the disciples, “Have faith in God.” (Mark 11:22b NLT)
Without faith in God, we have nothing solid in which to rest and trust. Without this kind of faith, it would be like the disappearing sand beneath one’s feet as a wave washes the sand away.
Faith isn’t faith until it’s tested.
When a storm shrouded the J-team as they crossed the Sea of Galilee and Jesus was asleep in the boat, the frantic disciples woke Jesus pleading, “Help! We’re perishing!”
Jesus said to them, “Where is your faith?” (Luke 8:25 NKJV)
So, where is our faith when it is tested?
An old Chinese proverb says, “The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.” We are God’s gems. He knows the worth, the power, and the beauty hidden deep within our hearts and only that which is contrary to our comfort will release the precious qualities within us.
How will we know the strength and extent of our faith if it is not tested? Untried faith is worthless. If we have no trials, how can we tell others what God is capable of doing?
We cannot wiggle out of these times. Premature deliverance frustrates God’s plan. It is like forcing open a cocoon before the caterpillar has finished its transformation into a butterfly. When we manipulate the hands of the clock to align with our own agenda, we destroy the beauty that emerges out of God’s timing.
God is always in our blank-ridden boat of circumstances, no matter what we go through in our lives, though we may not always feel His nearness. But remember, faith does not rest on our feelings. It rests on and in God and His power.
Faith is clinging to God when everything within us says otherwise. No matter what trials seem to come against us, we are always safe in the arms of our heavenly Father.
Where have you placed your faith?
“According to your faith let it be to you.”
(Matt. 9:29 NKJV)
May your faith always be in God and Jesus Christ…Lynn