Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.
Recently, I came across a definition of Faith that was new to me and it weighed heavy on my heart. It said “Faith is believing in something contrary to what you observe”. I kept thinking how true that was especially in today’s society. How often we get mixed up in this world of absolutes…a world where if you can’t see, feel, or touch it…then it’s not that important because you can only deal with what is right in front of you. I want to share a few examples and my thoughts as to how I try to respond.
We often observe in today’s society that it’s acceptable to have sexual relations with your significant other before marriage. Better yet…why not move in with them? How many times have you heard the rationale that it’s a good way to know if you are compatible in bed? Or…how are you going to know if you can live with them?
My response…because I have faith that God has blessed us with a gift of intimacy that should only be shared as a married couple in its purity, and that I have faith that God has someone for me that will fulfill all of my needs and bless me with someone special. If I just have faith and trust in God and wait for His timing, then I know I won’t be disappointed. The only time we can be disappointed is when we take things into our own hands and try to control the situation because our fleshly desires get in the way.
We observe in today’s society that success is most often measured with how much money we have and the amount of possessions we can obtain…no matter how much we are in debt. Or, we find it in the status we have at our work. It’s all about how others perceive us as to when we reach success, right?
My response…Have faith and trust in God that He will take care of your needs and He will bless you with your desires as long as we continue to seek Him with our whole hearts, soul, and mind. Success is serving God daily and living to glorify Him. We are not living our lives for this world, but for eternal life. That is where our faith is contrary to what we observe.
You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands produced this wealth for me.” But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.
We observe in today’s society that if an injustice is done to us that we have the right to harbor grudges, anger, and revenge. We automatically want to defend ourselves and lash out, but is that really what God wants?
My response…Have faith that when Jesus says that we should forgive 77 times, that there is a benefit in that. There is healing for us when we give that burden over to Christ and take that load of anger and resentment away before our hearts harden.
I can go on and on, but these three big areas are a good start. Today’s culture tells us the opposite of what our Faith calls us to do on a daily basis. When we observe these things, we should have faith in the principals and the direction that God provides for us. Faith that God will get us through the bad times. Faith that God will provide us with our needs. Faith that God will bless us for serving Him daily. Faith that if we follow the path of Jesus Christ that the benefits that we receive in eternal life far out-weigh the temporary benefits and pleasures we would receive here on earth for following the world. So let’s not be transformed by the majority of today’s society, but rather stand out and have faith that by following God we are following the right path that will bring us pure, long lasting joy…instead of temporary happiness.
Therefore, I urge you, brother and sisters, in view of God’s mercy to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God- this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.
So as you go about your day, think about your faith and what it means to you and live by that faith and not of the things of this world. I know I am going to be taking a closer look at my every day decisions and make sure they coincide with living for God. We are not always perfect in our decisions, but we can sure strive to be more like Christ. Amen?!