Monthly Archives: June 2014

Where to Begin?

“…let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith…” – Hebrews 12:1-2

So much is said about going the extra mile…and that’s a good thing. In fact, Jesus Christ taught us to go the extra mile in service to others. But we often overlook the importance of going the first mile. Joggers know, when in training, it is not always the third or fourth mile that is the toughest but rather it is the first mile! Just getting started can sometimes be our biggest challenge.

How do you start your day? You probably have a whole list of things that need to be accomplished. Sometimes there is so much to do that we are so overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. Other times we jump over some very important things knowing there are so many other things to do. Start that first mile of the day by quietly spending a few moments in scripture and in prayer and you will find the rest of the day is much easier to navigate.

Remember, whether you are training for a big road race or simply for the daily race of life, the extra mile does not mean anything unless you faithfully go the first one.

Express Your Love with Your Time

“We must show love through actions that are sincere, not through empty words.” 1 John 3:18

We all have different amounts of energy, wealth and talent, but we all have the exact same amount of time per day/week. You can always get more money, but you can’t get more time.

You only have a certain amount of allotted days, so you have to decide: What is your time worth? The most valuable thing you can give someone is your attention, because when you give attention to somebody you’re saying, “You matter to me. You are valuable. You are worth listening to. You are worth my time.”

The essence of relationships is not what we do for each other or the things we give to each other. The essence of true, loving relationships is how much we give of ourselves to another person.
The second law of love is this: The best expression of love is time.

The Bible says in 1 John 3:18, “We must show love through actions that are sincere, not through empty words” 
I can’t tell you how many people I have spoken to who have said, “I don’t get it, Fay-Ann. I give my family everything they need. I’m a good provider. We live a very comfortable life. What more do they want?”

I’ll tell you what they want: They want you! Only you can give them your time. Nothing can compensate for time — no amount of gifts, money or clothes. Kids don’t need things; they need parents. Another video game is not the answer. They need you!

How do you find more time for the people who love you and that you need to love?

Let me give you one suggestion: Put away the phone and turn off the computer. Ephesians 5:2 says, “Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God” Love means giving up. It means I give up my agenda for your agenda. It means I give up my time for your time. It means I give up my preference for your preference. It means I give up what I’d rather do right now to do what you’d rather do right now. That is a sacrifice. That is love.

What are some of the ways you can show love to your family and friends this week through giving your time?
What changes do you need to make in your schedule so that you have more time to demonstrate your love through action?

What have you learned about love from following the example of Christ?

Sometimes God Doesn’t Choose the Perfect Woman”

“Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. ‘Go, look over the land,’ he said, ‘especially Jericho.’ So they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there.” Joshua 2:1

I used to believe if God needed something important done, He would ask someone who had it all together. You know those people.

If God is going to assign an important job to someone, it’s going to be a “good church girl.” Right?

That’s what I thought until I read the story of Rahab in the book of Joshua. It gave me hope that sometimes the best woman for God’s job doesn’t have a perfect life or a perfect faith.

In fact, Rahab’s story tells me sometimes God chooses women with rough resumes, gritty pasts and dauntless attitudes to get a hard job done. Which is why God chose Rahab when He needed a brave and bold person to protect His warriors.

Rahab was a prostitute who lived within the walls of the city of Jericho. Jericho was a great city, except for the fact that God told the Israelites to conquer it.

The people who lived in Jericho weren’t following God, but they had heard of Him and how He helped the Israelites win many battles. When the residents of Jericho learned the Israelites were camped outside their city, they were rightly concerned.

As part of the reconnaissance, Joshua, the leader of the Israelites, sent two spies into the city. The Bible seems to indicate they made a beeline into an unusual place of refuge: Rahab’s home.

Now why would God direct them to the house of a woman? And one who didn’t have the best reputation?

There are many reasons why God might have chosen this particular woman to help the spies. But the one that strikes the deepest chord in my heart is that other people might have underestimated Rahab’s potential based on her past and present circumstances. But not God.

Rahab had guts and grit. When the spies arrived, instead of quivering in fear, Rahab thought fast and hid them on her roof. Then she redirected the king’s men, making a way of escape for the spies.

God could have chosen someone with a perfect pedigree to help. But on that day, inside the walls of the city, facing warrior spies in danger, none were available.

Rahab, however, was in the perfect position, with the perfect disposition, to do the most good. And God must have seen something tender in the heart of this life-hardened woman and knew He could trust her.

I love this about God. When God looked at Rahab, He didn’t see her profession or her past. He saw her potential.

And in spite of the challenges and choices of her life, He knew there was a part of Rahab’s heart that was open to Him. And Rahab did not disappoint.

The story ends with the spies escaping and God destroying the city of Jericho and everyone in it — except for Rahab and her family.

I’m so glad Rahab didn’t send the spies away, explaining that she didn’t have the best track record with men. Instead, she used her smart, quick mind to devise a plan. She used her boldness to defy the king’s men. She drew from her bravery to protect her family. She risked greatly, and it paid off.

Rahab’s story tells me that although I might list all the reasons why God wouldn’t use me, God prefers I take my personality, my experiences, even the parts of me that seem less-than-pleasant and give them to Him … every part of me.

It doesn’t mean He’s going to leave me as I am; God is always refining me. But in His hands, my mess has meaning.

Have you ever stamped “disqualified” on yourself due to your personality or something in your past or present? If so, I pray Rahab’s story encourages you. God has a plan, and He wants you, in all your uniqueness, to make it happen.

Sometimes God doesn’t choose the “perfect” girl for the job … and I’m so glad He doesn’t.

Heavenly Father, thank You for looking deeper than what others see, and for seeing my potential. Please help me trust that You want me just as I am and have a plan to use me in Your kingdom. Help me to trust You and Your plan for my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I Samuel 16:7, “But the LORD said to Samuel, ‘Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.’

Knowledge Requires Action

“Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24 NIV)

Did you know studying the scriptures can be dangerous? In fact, the results of Bible study could be disastrous. Sounds strange, I know. But God intended for us to apply the scriptures to our lives, not just read it. The Bible is about transformation, not just information. At the end of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says, “Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” (Matthew 7:24 NIV).

God’s Word is like a mirror. Many of us, however, tend to ignore the Scriptures because we know this is true. If you look into the Word of God, into the mirror of the Word, soon you see exactly what you look like, and it is not always pleasant.

The most helpful thing we can do in our prayer life, therefore, is to take a moment at the beginning of our prayer to face what the Word of God tells us is wrong in our lives — our lovelessness, our sharpness, our caustic attitudes, our tendency to defend ourselves and put down others. This is where Daniel begins. All this is summed up in one great word found many times in Scripture, the word, repent. When we repent we begin to set things right in our life; we begin to deal honestly with ourselves and with others.
 
Applying God’s Word is vitally important. So why is it important that we apply God’s Word to our lives?

1. Knowledge produces pride if we don’t apply truth to our lives. 1 Corinthians 8:1 says, “Knowledge puffs up while love builds up.” We’ve all seen people who know the Bible backward and forward, but they’ve never let it seep into their lives. They use the Bible as a hammer to pound on other people. We can be the most evil, mean-spirited, critical, judgmental people we’ll ever meet — if we never take the extra step and apply the Bible to our lives.
Knowledge without application produces pride. It’ll “puff” you up without a love-based application. It’ll cause harm, not help.

2. Knowledge requires action. James 1:22 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” What a person knows should find expression in what he or she does. We’re deceiving ourselves if we think we’re growing simply by taking notes on a Bible study. God’s commands are not optional.

3. Knowledge increases responsibility. James 4:17 says, “Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it”. With a deeper knowledge of Scripture comes a stronger judgment if we fail to apply what God shows us. When we start studying the Bible, God begins to show us areas of our lives that need to be changed, and he calls us to greater and greater responsibility as he does that.

Launch Out in Faith

“Then Joshua gave orders to the officers of the people … three days from now you will cross the Jordan River and take the land the Lord your God is giving you.” (Joshua 1:10-11 NIV)

There comes a point in life where you have to stop talking about and praying about a barrier in your life. You must step out in spite of your feelings, your fears, and your doubts. Joshua and the Israelites had to take the plunge — literally. Once they crossed the Jordan River, they were going to begin a battle to take over the nations.

The Jordan River is not a very big river, except in flood season when it swells into a giant, rushing, torrential, and very dangerous river. The Israelites just happened to be right there during flood season.

They said, “How are we going to get across?” God said, “I’m going to do a miracle! But I want you to step in first. This is a test.” So the spiritual leaders began to walk into the water, and God did a miracle. The waters receded, and the people crossed over.

What do you do when you know something is God’s will, but you’re scared to death to do it? You do it anyway! And once you start doing it, the faith will come. God doesn’t do the miracle first. No. He wants you to step out in faith.

Face your fears. If you wait for perfect conditions, you’ll never get anything done: “Those who wait for perfect weather will never plant seeds” (Ecclesiastes 11:4 NIV).

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All He Wants Is Your Faith

God doesn’t want your home, your car, your furniture, your savings, your possessions. All He wants is your faith—your strong belief in His Word. And that may be the one thing that other, more spiritual-appearing people lack. You may look at another person as being more spiritual than you but that person may actually be struggling hard to keep up an appearance of righteousness. Yet, as God looks at you, He declares, “There is a righteous man or woman.” Why? Because you have admitted your helplessness to become righteous and trusted in the Lord to give you His righteousness.

Paul tells us we are counted as righteous in God’s eyes for the same reason Abraham was. “Therefore it was imputed to [Abraham] for righteousness. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; but for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead” (Romans 4:22-24).

You may claim, “I believe this! I have faith in the God who resurrected Jesus.” Yet, here are some questions for you: Do you believe the Lord can resurrect your troubled marriage? Do you believe He can bring to life a spiritually dead relative? Do you believe He can raise you up out of the pit of a debilitating habit? Do you believe He can erase your cursed past and restore to you all the years that have been wasted?

When everything looks hopeless—when you are in an impossible situation, with no resources and no hope before you—do you believe God will be your Jehovah Jireh, seeing to your need? Do you believe He is committed to keeping His promises to you and that if even one of His words should fail, the heavens would melt and the universe collapse?

“For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isaiah 55:10-11).

FAITH MUST BE FOUNDED ON THE WORD

God is concerned that His people are being shaken in their faith—that they won’t trust Him in their crisis. Beloved, our worst sin is our unwillingness to believe He will do what He promised.

His Word says, “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations” (2 Peter 2:9). “God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).

These verses are either the truth or they are lies. But if they are the truth, then we must stand on them. God wants us to be able to say, “Lord, if I die standing here, then let me die in faith. I trust You to see me through, so live or die, I’m Yours.”

Let all the winds and waves of hell come at you. Let everything come at you. Our God said He is able—and He knows how to deliver you.

He intended that you and I have joy, peace, victory and rest in our walk with Him. He is looking for men and women who will stand against what is coming in this dark age—servants who will stand with a calm and a peace because Christ abides in them.

God desires that you come into a place of such trust that you will never again fear, but truly rest in His power and ability. He knows how to deliver you from all snares, trials and temptations—if you will trust Him.

“He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defense; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before Him: God is a refuge for us” (Psalm 62:6-8).

Rooted In Faith

Now staying rooted in faith would indicate that there is going to be a struggle. In the parable of the sower, (Matthew 13:3-21) Jesus explains that the seed is the word of God, and Jesus indicated that the devil will come immediately to steal the word out of 
your heart; but he can only steal the word that you don’t understand.

As you plant a seed, it takes time for the seed to take root. Many people don’t stay rooted because of impatience; you see that the seed does not immediately come up, it first must grow underground before you will begin to see anything growing above 
ground. This causes many to give up, because they don’t see it.

The Bible tells us how the root grows in Jeremiah 7:7-8; which says “blessed is the man that trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is in the Lord. For he 
shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreads out her roots by the river, and her leaf shall be green, and shall not be careful in the years of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit”.

We see this also in Psalms 1:1-3 “blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law does he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season; its leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he does shall prosper”.

To be rooted means to be established in the word of God. Remember that the root is the part of a plant that provides stability and nourishment for the plant. Jesus is our root that we must stay connected to (John 15:4-6) Jesus says “abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches, he that abides in Me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If a man abide not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered, and men gather them, and cast them into the fire; and they are burned”.  

The apostle Paul tells us in Romans 11:16-18 “for if the first fruit be holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root be holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches be broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, was grafted in among them, and with them partakes of the root and fatness of the olive tree. Boast not against the branches, but if you boast, you bear not the root, but the root you”.  

The apostle Paul prayed in Ephesians 3:14-19 saying “for this cause I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man. That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love. May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height. And to know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fullness of God”. I believe that he was praying for me too. Remember that he would pray for those that had not seen him in the flesh.

The apostle Paul gives us, who were before an enemy of God hope in Colossians 1:21-23 which says “and you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now has He reconciled. In the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and unblameable and unreproveable in His sight. If you 
continue in the faith; grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which you have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister”.  

And he goes on in Colossians 2:6-7 to explain how we can stay rooted; it says “as you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk you in Him. Rooted and built up in Him, and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving”. Receiving Christ as Lord of your life is the beginning of life with Christ. But you must continue to follow His leadership by being rooted, built up, and strengthened in the faith. Just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to live in obedience to Him, so you will grow in faith, strong and vigorous in the truth you were taught.  

Some people will tell you things that may sound good, but we are supposed to test them, and cast out what does not line up with the word of God (II Corinthians 10:3-5) “for though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the 
knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ”.

The apostle Paul uses the illustration of our being rooted in Christ, just as plants draw nourishment from the soil through their roots, so we draw our life giving strength from Christ (Acts 17:28) “for in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, for we are also His offspring”.

You can live for Christ by committing your life and submitting your will to Him. Seeking to learn from Him, from His life, and His teachings (Colossians 3:16-17) “let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever you do in word of deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus giving thanks to God and the Father by Him”.

We can thank God that He sent the Holy Spirit, and as we recognize the Holy Spirit’s power in us. The Holy Spirit was given to us to guide us, and we have to draw near, by listening to the Spirit of God (Galatians 5:22-25).

The apostle Peter tells us in II Peter 1:4-10 keys in staying rooted in faith; it says “whereby are given to us exceeding great and precious promises; that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature; having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge. And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness. And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (love). For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacks these things is blind. And cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if you do these things, you shall never fall”.

Spiritual growth is always dependent on our vital connection to God. God has provided all things for life and godliness, we have to strengthen our spirit man to understand and hear the word of God, for the word of God is the truth.  

We see in Jude verses 20-21which says “but you, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life”.

If we will walk in the knowledge of God, the understanding of God and the wisdom of God, no matter how dark it is around us, we will shine with the light of heaven. We have to be serious about knowing God and having the thoughts of God. We should have a biblical reason for everything we do (Galatians 5:16) “this I say then, walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh”.

We are told to guard our hearts; things get into our heart by what we see, hear and say. And Jesus said that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth will speak. We are warned not to let a root of bitterness affect us (Hebrews 12:14-15) “follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord. Looking diligently less any man fail of the grace of God; less any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled”.  

Remember that the devil will bring people in your path to get you angry, but remember what the apostle Paul tells us to be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against 
spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take to you the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day; and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness. And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.  
Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith you shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints”

Faith is the Key to Getting Everything from God Part 2

Abraham is called the father of faith, by faith Abraham went out when he was called; in (Genesis 12:1-3) God called him; in Hebrews 11:8-10 says “by faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed, and he went out, not knowing where he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise. For he looked for a city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. And then by faith he offered up Isaac in verses 17-19 which says “by faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac and he that had received the promises offered up his 
only begotten son. Of whom it was said, that in Isaac shall your seed be called. Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, for where also he received him in a figure”.

Jesus declared to people, “your faith has made you whole”; the woman with the issue of blood (Luke 8:43-44) “and a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any. Came behind Him and touched the hem of His garment, and immediately her issue of blood stopped”. She was acting on Malachi 4:2 which says “but to you that 
reverence My name shall the Son of Righteousness arise with healing in His wings (the hem of His garment)”. Faith must be based on the word of God, and then acted upon.

He desires people to have faith in His word alone; we can only see the power of God if we have faith. Faith can move mountains, heal the sick and is the means of entrance into the kingdom. God is seen through the eyes of faith.

Jesus commented on His disciples lack of faith; their failure to even try to rebuke the storm (Mark 4:35-40) which says “and the same day, when the even was come, He said to them, let us pass over to the other side. And when they had sent away, the multitude, they took Him even as He was in the ship, and there were also with Him other little ships. And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship so that it was now full. And He was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow and they awake Him, and say to Him, Master, care You not that we perish? And He arose, and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, peace be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And He said to them, why are you so fearful, how is it that you have no faith”?

Jesus makes note of Peter’s little faith (Matthew 14:22-31) after the feeding of the 5000 men plus women and children, Jesus sent His disciples to go to the other side while He sent the multitude away. And after He sent the multitude away, He went up into a mountain apart to pray, but the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves for the wind was contrary. And the fourth watch of the night, Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. The disciples were afraid, thinking it was a spirit, but Jesus spoke to them, saying, be of good cheer, it is I, be not afraid. And Peter answered Him and said, Lord, if it be You, bid me come to You on the water. And He said, come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water to go to Jesus, but when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid and began to sink, he cried out Lord save me. And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to hem, O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” Jesus calls faith that begins to look at the circumstances, little faith.

Jesus warns Jairus when the runner came to say that his daughter was already dead, “fear not, believe only and she shall be made whole” (Luke 8:50). You see Jairus had professed  “my daughter lies at the point of death, I pray You, come and lay Your hands on her, that she may be healed, and she shall live” (Mark 5:23); and even though they were delayed by the woman with the issue of blood, after 
hearing that his daughter was dead, he had to refrain from saying any negative thing. The results was that Jesus after putting out those that doubted from his house, went in and raised her from the dead. You must remember that the devil will send someone your way to get your faith, if you let him; but the Bible says in I John 5:4 “for whatsoever is born of God overcomes the world, and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith.

Jesus said about the Cananite woman who had the daughter that was vexed with a devil, that she had great faith, even though she was not under the covenant (Matthew 15:21-28), she came to Him and asked Him for mercy on her daughter, but He answered her, that He was not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. She then worshipped Him, saying Lord, help me. He said to her it is not fit to take the children’s bread and give it to the dogs. And she said, truth, Lord, yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters table. Then Jesus answered and said to her, O woman, great is your faith, be it so to you even as you will, and her daughter was made whole from that very hour. She did not get offended when He called her a dog, and was willing to take the crumbs.

Love is what activates faith; it is the beginning of faith and at the same time, the ultimate expression of faith. The good news is that “the love of God has been shed in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. Love is a fruit of the Spirit, who allows us to live the life of faith. Only by virtue of the indwelling Spirit does faith find expression in love.

Faith is the Key to Getting Everything from God Part 1

The same way that by faith you received your salvation, is the same way that you receive everything from God.

Faith is our confident attitude toward God and not in ourselves; it involves a 
reliance on Christ and a commitment to His will for our life. It is a personal 
commitment of one’s life to following Christ in obedience to His commands. Jesus said many times “if you love Me, you will keep My commandments”.

We must trust the word at face value (II Timothy 3:16-17) says “all scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly 
furnished to all good works”.

We are told to “walk by faith and not by sight” (II Corinthians 5:7). Romans 12:3 tells us that “God has dealt to every man the measure of faith”. So it is not being hidden from us. Romans 10:17 says “so then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God”; you hear it, you believe it, and then you act on it (speak it) “we 
having the same spirit of faith according as it is written, I believed and therefore have I spoken, we also believe, and therefore speak” (II Corinthians 4:13). You have to develop your faith; the more word you get, the more faith comes to you.  

You have to feed your faith on the word of God. Find the word of God that answers the problems of your life and meditate on them until you can answer the devil when he comes to you with the question, “it is written”.

The Bible warns us that “without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he that comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him”. This is detailed in Romans 8:5-8 which says “for they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh, but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded, is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God, for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God”.

Faith is belief in something that can’t be touched, or seen, (Hebrews 11:3) says “through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear”.

We must have confidence (I John 5:14-15) “and this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him”.

We must know the reality of what Jesus did. Faith is the basis of salvation. It is by faith that believers are justified, reconciled, redeemed, made alive, adopted into the family of God, recreated, and transported into a new kingdom and set free. Even though you cannot see your salvation, when one comes to Christ and professes faith in Him, you are sure that when you die, you will go to heaven. Saving faith 
involves personally depending on the finish work of Christ’s sacrifice as the only basis for forgiveness of sin, and entrance into heaven; (II Timothy 1:12) says “for the which cause I also suffer these things, nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed to Him against that day”.