By Faith

Exactly one year ago, on October 27th 2020, we spoke together about how faith is a risk. One year later in the year of 2021 a lot has occurred in just that short amount of time. I cannot
fathom enough how important faith truly is. Faith is SO important to God, and I feel the Spirit of
the Lord leading me today to express that.


As always, the Word of God is the best place to go to explain:
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by
it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the
universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of
things that are visible. By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than
Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by
accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks. By faith Enoch
was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had
taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God.”
(Hebrews 11:1-5, ESV)


Hebrews chapter 11 is an extraordinary example of how many have led their walk with
God in faith. It also shows how walking out in this faith is rewarding, especially with your
relationship with God the Father. I couldn’t recommend enough to thoroughly read
Hebrews 11 in it’s full context for yourself. Whether you haven’t read it yet, or need a
refresher. It will encourage you to keep contending!


And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to
God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”
(Hebrews 11:6, ESV)


Are we not a people that want to be pleasing to God? Do you want to be a sweet aroma
(Song of Solomon 4:11) to God? When you approach God, how is it that you want to
present yourself? How will He see you? Did you know faith is a spiritual gift? (1
Corinthians 12:9)


Jesus says, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me.” (John
14:1, ESV). When Jesus left the earth and ascended to heaven He promised us
something. He exclaimed that the reason He left was to prepare a place for us. A home
with no more crying, no more pain, no more thirst. At this new home we will have
everything we need. We will no longer need to worry about tomorrow.


Sounds like a beautiful promise right? Yet to attain this promise Jesus made it very
clear. We must have faith. Jesus explained to Thomas, “I am the Way, and the Truth,
and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6, ESV). You may not understand faith right away and faith may seem a bit risky, but it is your faith
that will save you (Ephesians 2:8-9). It is your faith that will heal you (Mark 5:34; Acts
3:16). Your faith will secure you (Proverbs 20:28), make you righteous (Romans 3:22), it
will strengthen you (Romans 4:20), and most importantly, give peace between you and
God (Romans 5:1)!


The most important thing you could ever have faith in is Jesus.
“Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Phillip? Whoever has seen
me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” (John 14:9, ESV). Do you recognize who Jesus is? If so, He is asking you today to have faith in Him. Without Him, there is no salvation. You will not inherit the promises of the coming kingdom. I promise.

I believe, do you?

“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
(Mark 11:24, ESV)

Previously we discussed the fact that faith is a risk. “

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1, ESV)

To have faith, is when one believes in something even when they cannot see it in the moment. It is a hope. To have faith can be defined as, complete trust or confidence in someone or something. And the last time we spoke on such a faith, we were touching on the entrusting of God Himself.

“And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.”
(James 5:15, ESV)

I know it has been a while, so allow me to remind you that this faith we initially spoke on was primarily about salvation and the importance of trusting God with your life, but today we are going to discuss faith in a different way.

Now that we have eternal salvation, which is kept in the safe hands of God (1 Peter 1:3-5), God has given a challenge. He has given us the challenge to believe in His mighty works like never before.

Laugh at me if you must, but I 100% trust God that He will answer my prayers. God has shown me in many ‘little’ ways that He will show me and my family a miracle. There are many things doubt will try to defeat. Although this time I am not allowing the storm to master over me. The only Master I have is my Lord and Savior! (Can I get an amen?)

“pray without ceasing”
(1 Thessalonians 5:17, ESV)

If you read through the Word of God you will see many instances where Jesus healed. He healed various kinds of people: the lame, the blind, the possessed, and more! Jesus told His disciples that in His power, they could do the same. Let me be the one to tell you, if no one has already, that we as children of God can do the same! When we do anything in love and in His name, we glorify the Father.

You may be wondering what miracle I am seeking. My family and I are seeking the FULL healing of my father-in-law, Mark, who was diagnosed with ALS. Now, you may be shaking your head and thinking this is an impossible request, & the enemy might be highlighting his decline, but my God said, IF YOU ASK ANYTHING IN MY NAME I WILL DO IT! The key to an answered prayer is firm belief.

So in this belief, will you join me in prayer without wavering?…

“But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.” (James 1:6, ESV).

I believe in the power of prayer. I believe God has given His people authority to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy (Luke 10:19).

I believe, do you?

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Mark 16:15‭-‬18, ESV

Radical Love

“But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”
(Matthew 5:39, ESV)
“And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.”
(Matthew 5:40, ESV)
“And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.”
(Matthew 5:41, ESV)
“Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.”
(Matthew 5:42, ESV)
“But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you”..
(Matthew 5:44, ESV)



“For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

Matthew 5:46-48, ESV

Jesus has called us to stand out from the world. This includes the way we react.

Before the Holy Spirit taught us new ways from our prior, we thought certain reactions were acceptable.

Yet as you see, we are to be the bigger person. Though hard, we are to reflect the same love that God provides. This reflection shows the world whom we belong. For He explains that when we go against the normal and decide to use our actions supernaturally, we then even sharpen our own iron. Like Father, like son. Like Father, like daughter.

This world will never see what God intends for it to if we as Christians sit on the back burner, be hypocrites, and not apply what we are told in the Word to everyone we encounter.

We won’t become better versions of ourselves either if we continue to give ourselves excuses as well.

Our neighbors, our enemies, may not have the push they need for a heart change, if we aren’t moving in the perfectiveness of our faith.

Radical love teaches us to get out of our natural habits. To love beyond our natural capabilities. They are unnatural responses to unjust circumstances. Every heartache, set back, and discouragement, is an opportunity. Let us be like our Father, and use what the enemy means for harm, for good.

Relationship

“Let the heartbeat of your Bible reading be this simple prayer: ‘LORD, move this from my head to my heart.”
– John Piper

Today let us examine our relationships. Which ones? All of them.

Your relationship with God should be first in your life. If this is not the case for you, then this is one area in your life you must cater to first and foremost. Next, if you have a spouse, you and them have become one flesh (Genesis 2:24). Thus because of this your relationship should also be of importance to you. It should be second on your list. Your parents, your imitate family (if they are in your life) should also be an aspect within your life that you can lean in toward. After all the command, “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12, ESV), still applies (Matthew 10:37, Matthew 15:4, & Matthew 19:19). Then everyone else accordingly. (Friends Proverbs 17:17, Bosses/Coworkers 1 Peter 2:18, Matthew 5:16, Colossians 3:22, the government(s) 1 Peter 2:18…..so on and so forth).

These are just some logistics before I begin, but this is not necessarily all we will cover.

Today, I would like to go over relationships as a whole. Meaning, this is something we should be doing in all of our relationships, no matter which one it is.

This ‘something’ is honesty.

“You have no idea the numbers of people that God may want to influence through you.” – Andy Stanley

Honesty is important in every single relationship. When you are not honest with someone, you are even lying to yourself. In reality, it is also relevant to note that when you are not being honest with yourself or the people around you, you are not walking in accordance to the spirit. Walking in step with the spirit means that our hearts and thoughts are aligned with the Father (Galatians 5:25). Honesty gives us a clear conscience.

“Whoever gives an honest answer
    kisses the lips.”

Proverbs 24:26, ESV


Being an honest person means you are being your truest self. Those who are free in Christ are free indeed (John 8:36). If you feel you cannot be honest with the people around you, then you really need to reevaluate who it is you are allowing yourself to be affected by. There are so many questions we could ask ourselves to get us back on track, but the key thing is that we must fix our faults as soon as we recognize them. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to get to the solution. Please, allow me to explain.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world’s darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12, BSB)

As we spoke about in reading, “Sometimes“, we learned that the tough times we go through in this life are no exception to the Body of Christ. IF you accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior your life has become new in Him, but that doesn’t mean that everything is picture perfect. Despite now being a child of God, we are still temporally living in the world, but just because we are in the world, doesn’t mean we should respond the way the ones of the world do.

So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.  For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Galatians 5:16-18, NIV

Whether we are being honest or facing honesty, sometimes this can be a hard thing to handle. Sometimes we don’t want to face what is in front of us, but I encourage you today to fight against that. Stop running away from your problems and instead try tackling them and work through them.

By doing this and applying it to your life, you will be walking according to the spirit and will of God.

It might not be easy but that is okay. It may be a fight but it is a fight worth fighting for.

Our spirit is consistently fighting against our flesh, but it is up to us to reason it out (see Isaiah 1:18).

“Learn to do right” (Isaiah 1:17, BSB).

One last thing before you go.

To be honest, is showing you love the one you are being honest with. Is it not?


Thank you for reading. To read more on friendships please click here to read.

If this helped you and blessed you, I pray you will also take the time to be in the Word of God. 1 Peter Chapter 2 maybe! 😊