Saturday, January 30, 2016

Keep The Faith

by Tim Howard

We all have faith! Whenever you get on an airplane – you exercise faith by putting your confidence in a pilot you have never met. When you invest in a retirement fund you exercise faith by believing there will be a significant profit – to assist you in the future. The question isn’t if you have faith but where do you place your faith and in whom do you trust.

The author of Hebrews – a book in the Bible – tells us that faith is not optional but essential to pleasing God.

Heb. 11:6 “…without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” NIV

 To have faith in God you must believe He exists and that He is actively involved in your ongoing welfare. He has been in your past – He is in your present and will be in your future. He not only exists but also rewards those who earnestly seek Him.

God is more interested in giving than taking – People who put their faith in Him and earnestly seek Him – discover this truth to be real. A familiar verse – known to many people, is found in John 3:16. It starts by saying  “For God so loved the world He gave…” 

Love is God’s motivation for giving rewards.  Behind every act there is a motive and the motivating factor behind every act determines the ensuing results.  When things are done out of anger, bitterness, pressure, guilt or duty, they reap negative results but when people do things out of love, kindness, mercy, grace and compassion he or she makes a positive impact.  Motives are very important – and God’s motive is love!

He is not a respecter of persons and does not show favoritism.  His blessings and rewards extend to all mankind but those who believe in Him and seek Him – experience what is available to all. 

I’ve heard people say they have faith in God but when they describe their faith they talk about a ‘Higher Power,’ a ‘Force’ or an ‘Energy.” Something impersonal.

Jesus came to reveal God to be very personal. He does not sit in the heavens watching things unwind but is very aware of what goes on and partners with those who call on Him.

I like what David wrote in Psalms 139:1-3

“You have searched me LORD and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are intimately acquainted with my ways”

In other words, He is not aloof – out there – up there – somewhere.

He IS here. He IS present. He IS actively involved in the lives of those who seek Him and rewards them now and in the future.

When you believe, trust and put your confidence in that truth – You are expressing faith!

We all have faith but our faith is only as strong as the object of that faith. Trusting people can sometimes backfire. Putting confidence in your accumulated wealth can prove disastrous since no one knows what tomorrow holds. Just keep an eye on Wall Street to see how things can change.

God can be trusted and Jesus revealed Him to us.  Those who seek, believe and trust in Jesus will be rewarded. You can take that to the bank!

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