Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen. We all know this scripture (Hebrews 11:1). What does this really mean in your day-to-day existence? How can we bring this high and lofty scripture down to the “nitty-gritty” reality of our regular get up in the morning and go to work lives? How can we make faith in God come alive in us everyday?
At what point do we become mature enough in ourselves, i.e., to know our issues, our own problems, and weaknesses in our soul that need healing and actively begin to seek change? How much faith in God does it take to walk the road of emotional and mental healing to truly enjoy an abundant life? How can we have faith in God when one day we wake up tore out of our frame? And it seems like we are thinking all wrong, we know we are thinking wrong, we know our thoughts are what’s providing the upsetting feelings. We know we can’t blame everything wrong with us on other people, but somehow you are just too far-gone to stop the process.
On top of all that, you just went through this scenario after you prayed and before you even left the house in the morning. By the time your job has started at work, you feel like you already lost the faith fight for the day.
Even when you are making mistakes and struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel, you must:
- Have faith, God’s grace is sufficient and He still loves you. No matter how weak you feel, it is God’s grace sustaining you. After all you have been through, you can’t take credit for surviving and managing this far. It is God holding you up and together right now. As a believer, the weaker you become, the stronger God’s grace is on your life when you actively ask him. God’s grace is sufficient, His strength is made perfect in your weakness. In 2 Corinthians 12:9 (MSG) we read: “My grace is enough; it's all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness. Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ's strength moving in on my weakness. Now I take limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut me down to size—abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become.”
- Have faith not beat up yourself when you realize you have messed up, but still have the strength to change, keep moving forward and keep getting better not bitter. You belong to Jesus. Romans 8: 1-2 (KJV) reads: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit”.
- Have faith that the sanctification is an ongoing process of ever-deepening soul conversion and mind renewal. Legally, you are saved and in right standing with God. Positionally, you are seated in heavenly places with Jesus. However, in your daily experience, you get there little by little every day. Holiness is a process and a journey. Philippians 2:13 (MSG) reads: “What I'm getting at, friends, is that you should simply keep on doing what you've done from the beginning. When I was living among you, you lived in responsive obedience. Now that I'm separated from you, keep it up. Better yet, redouble your efforts. Be energetic in your life of salvation, reverent and sensitive before God. That energy is God's energy, an energy deep within you, God himself willing and working at what will give him the most pleasure.”
- Have faith to believe prayers are working even if you can’t see them or feel them. There is subtle, effective, prevailing power with continued steadfast prayer. If you isolate yourself, you will delay on your own breakthrough by not reaching out to others for support and prayer. Sow prayer into the lives of other people. James 5:16 (MSG) reads: “Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.”
- Have faith to believe the purging, pruning and cleansing process is expanding you and you are growing and changing everyday, so when the answers and blessings come you have maturity and grace to handle it. John 15: 1-8 (MSG) reads: “I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn't bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.”
- Have faith God will somehow, someway, get the glory out of your life even through things may look messy sometimes and you find yourself getting impatient. Remember Hebrews 6:12 MSG: “Don't drag your feet. Be like those who stay the course with committed faith and then get everything promised to them.”
Remember anything worthwhile takes time. God is never in a hurry so we shouldn’t be either. Those who win are those who refuse to let the enemy wear them down, who keep standing in spite of the obstacles and who refuse to give up their dream. The patient, diligent ones are those who inherit the promises. Never underestimate the power of staying on course and being patient.
Faith and patience is the key. It takes moment-by-moment faith in God to believe in Him, accept His Word and His Love unconditionally and surrender yourself, your desires, your needs and everything about you to Him so you can have that peace. Daily faith is a daily walk of surrender and humbly realizing you cannot live a godly life without the help of the Holy Spirit. If you try to live right and be healed by yourself in your own limited understanding you will keep making a mess. It takes moment-by-moment faith to follow God daily so your fleshy inclinations and thought patterns die and God’s spirit of life and peace grow within you. Then you can walk into his blessing with peace and joy that comes along with it.
[photo credit: Shannon L. Miller]