Saturday, February 7, 2009

Adventure in Faith

Since I worked and studied hard for our Alpha Omega group topical study on faith and couldn't make it to the study at thought I could at least post it on the blog. I took some liberties and took out a few things and added a few things.

Faith was a God inspired topic to study for our group.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic since my faith seems to be going through it's own test. And because Ronda, in her wisdom, suggested we have topical studies for a while.

I think life has been a constant test. A daily test, a test that has gone on my entire life, before I even knew the Lord, and even more so since He found me.

There are so many times where I can look back and say, “Oh, I get it- I see now”. But I really didn’t know at that particular moment that I was being tested. And sometimes I feel like it’s easier to go through a test that is HUGE than it is when they’re simple or small.

We all have days or “times” in our lives where it’s very obvious that our faith is being tested, but what about the times we don’t even realize when we’re being tested.
Like the trip to the grocery store and we’re held up by a person crossing the street-slowly, and we’re in a hurry. What about that homeless person we see every day on freeway off ramp? What about that precious child with no hair from cancer treatments?
Do we offer patience and a smile or do we turn away? What if these are angels, sent down from heaven to make sure we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing – stepping out in faith, doing the right thing, helping out a stranger, being patient with someone, smiling at a sick child, and their parents.
These are small examples of faith. Some of the most difficult things to do are really the easiest things to do.

Here are some things / tests that I’ve been thinking about recently:
Did Abraham realize he was being tested when Sarah approached him with the idea of using a surrogate?
Did Sarah realize she was being tested when she was so desperate to have a child she felt the need to “help God out”?
Did Joseph realize he was being tested when he interpreted the dreams of his cell mates?

Did Moses realize he was being tested through all the different things he went through?? He may have that “Hindsight is 20/20” thing, but did he know at the time??

King David! How he was tested and failed over and over, yet he was “the man after God’s own heart”.

What about Peter’s faith?? He was a bumbling fool sometimes, but he walked on water, and denied Christ 3 times, yet he was still so faith-full.

So many testimony's of faith tried and tested. Successfully and not so much.

What I really need to understand that even though my faith seems to be so minuscule, God still uses it. And “grows me” with it, and increases my faith through it.
I think that we never really know when we’re being tested. Sometimes the things we’re going through are simply consequences for our choices and actions.

(Everything happens for a reason. See Christina Flagg’s blog . Now that was powerful to me. )

But they become tests through at those times. Tests for us and tests for those around us.
Test is short for testimony.
When we’re done with the test, it becomes a testimony.

I looked up Faith in the Webster’s dictionary –

1 – Sincerity of intentions
2 –Belief and trust in and loyalty to God
3 - Firm belief in something for which there is no proof.
4 - Complete trust

I like # 4 the best.

I also looked it up on Encyclopedia Britannica:

The Greek word for faith is Pistis, the Latin word is Fides – "Faith is the divinely inspired human response to God’s historical revelation through Jesus Christ and consequently, is of crucial significance”
But I like how Heb. 11: shows the faith of many. But I think verse 1 says it the best –“faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see”

I long to hear, one day, “Welcome home, my good and faithful servant.”