What faith is not…

One of my favorite little fellas gave me this coffee mug.

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I still see the joy on his face when giving me this gift. Precious and priceless! Faith is also a precious gift. I pray for those I love dearly to have true faith. My daughter, my sister — the one I rarely see but love and miss — family and friends facing devastating circumstances are part of these prayers. Jesus prayed for Peter on verge of Peter’s wrenching denial of him. “I pray that your faith fail not.” But what is faith?

The life of faith does not mean a life free of trouble.

“For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake.” Philippians 1:29

I always tended to think of suffering for Christ in terms of those who are literally being tortured and abused for refusing to deny Christ and His Word. That is the basic meaning, I am sure. But there are many other ways of suffering for Christ. Being committed wives to the men we married for His sake fits, too. Seriously! It takes faith in His promises to stick it out. You do so in faith that this hard road you have chosen to stay on is for His glory and your ultimate good.

A friend of mine wrote a book called The Secret Life of An Unlikely Convert. She challenges professing Christians to think of what they have repented of and given up to follow Christ. She was living a lifestyle she loved. She encountered God’s Word. Slowly studying she soon realized she was living a life of sin outside of God’s boundaries. Her conversion made her life at that time harder, not easier, as she then made choices that led to a radical change in lifestyle.

Faith is not the power of positive thinking!

Don’t get me wrong! I am a huge fan of gratitude and positivity. I love watching inspirational movies and reading positive stories. All the positivity in the world won’t rescue you if you step out in front of a speeding tractor trailer or fail to pay your tax bill!! Faith in faith itself leads to depression and doubt when things are not going well. Instead, we turn to the real and literal Author and Finisher of our faith. He showed his real wound scars to doubting Thomas and said, “Reach out your hand and touch me.”

“Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our Faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2

 

 

 

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