If it doesn't count for Christ, it doesn't count.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

. . . Just start!

For in it God’s righteousness is revealed from faith to faith, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith. Romans 1:17 (HCSB)


Various commentaries and translations of this verse show it to have deep, multifaceted meanings. "Faith to faith", in the context of this passage, can certainly carry several meanings, each supportive of the others. The Word of God is built layer upon layer, meaning upon meaning, as we are drawn deeper and deeper into Him and closer to Him in the way that our life of faith is lived out as He takes us from faith to faith. Maybe that is from an Old Testament faith to a New Testament faith. It could be from faith in the natural and ourselves to faith in Him. It may well be a growing faith.

Sometimes we think we are struggling to hold onto our faith. I think it is more like we are struggling for a sense of how our faith "works" and how our faith fits into areas and circumstances of our lives. Maybe we are trying to have faith in our faith rather than in Jesus. A life of faith can be complicated and confusing when we lose our focus. We can look too closely at our problem or circumstance, and before we know it, our faith seems to be AWOL because our attention is focused on something that cannot receive or act on faith. That problem is not going to respond to faith. Jesus is!   

". . . the righteous one will live by his faith", from Habakkuk, tells us that a life of faith is just that. Faith is not something that we "muster up" when we need it. We need it every moment of every day and the presence of faith in our lives is as constant as our heartbeat and our breathing. We might be more aware of it at times, but we must never carry a mindset that our faith is not with us and within us.

Maybe you or someone you know has been so beaten down by life that there is no expectation of anything better from God. Maybe there is no asking because there is a feeling of unworthiness, or hopelessness. There may be doubt, not whether God loves, but in God's willingness or even in His plan to give what may be desperately needed. There might be a feeling that faith has flown.

If that is the case, a return to, or a beginning of, a life of faith has to start somewhere. Faith is there. Pick it up and advance against your enemy. You might find that just stepping out in faith to ask . . . just ask . . . will lead to a deeper and growing faith. God loves you. He's not mad at you or disappointed in you. He is not going to make you jump through hoops. He will bring you to the life of faith that He wants for you and that will open the windows of Heaven so that His stores of blessing will be poured out upon you so that He will be glorified - seen - in you!

You don't have to go anywhere. He is waiting to take you. Just look and you will find Him where you are. Start right there! Be led from faith to faith in ever greater ways than I have listed here. Start with one and be led to another. But start!
Faith to ask

Faith to hope

Faith to believe

Faith to expect

Faith to reach

Faith to receive

Faith to accept

Faith to give

“I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me. If anyone does not remain in Me, he is thrown aside like a branch and he withers. They gather them, throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples. As the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you. Remain in My love." (from John 15)

You don't have to come up with your own faith. You can't. All . . . everything . . . you need to live the life God has planned for you is constantly provided to you by Jesus, the Vine. That includes your faith. You just have to use it. Accept that you have it. And don't let that part about not remaining and being thrown into the fire scare you if you are a believer. You belong to Jesus. He is not going to let you go. If you are not a believer, please consider our Lord's call to you. There is nothing more important and a whole new life awaits you. It's not about fear. It's about accepting the very love of God.

And please remember that most of the time when I say "you" I'm saying "me".


PS:  Your video!