A few years ago, I was introduced to a coworker that would be giving me training in my new role. He projected his screen on the wall and I noticed Bible Gateway was one of the shortcuts on his computer. I wanted to start a conversation, but I wasn’t sure what to say. If I asked if he was a Christian or a church goer, I wasn’t sure if I would get the answer I was looking for. I asked him if he was a man of faith. Just because someone goes to church, doesn’t mean they agree with the Bible or understand its purpose, demands, and freedom. The term Christian has been unfortunately used to describe so many things that saying you are a Christian may not get to the heart of who you are. It is a shame that a name given to those that followed Christ with such passion is now a word associated with many things not in the Bible or not having anything to do with Christ. To be clear I am a Christian. I make an attempt to follow Christ and be as much like him as possible, but my definition and your definition may not align. However, if you ask someone if they are of faith, it is a pretty clear question because those who live a life of faith know it.
Hebrews 11:6 says that it is impossible to please God without faith. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. If you hear the word of God and you believe that Jesus died for your sins and accept him as your savior, you have faith. That faith will grow into every part of your life if you continue in it. A life of faith is one that has surrendered to Christ and is living for him in everything. To live a life of faith, you must first begin your journey of faith from that small seed and allow it to grow. If you ask God to increase your faith, he will honor your request. The amazing thing is when you look back at where you were and where you are after time spent growing in your faith. It is almost incomprehensible as if you are looking at a picture of yourself as a child; you don’t notice your growth from day to day, but the change is unmistakable.
What does a life of faith look like? Freedom is the first word that comes to my mind. A life of faith is one that trusts God for everything. There is freedom when you trust God for everything. Anxiety is greatly reduced as you learn to trust him in each area of your life. A life of faith seeks truth and the truth you find will set you free. As we are told from our surrounding culture that truth is an abstract idea that can never be found, for those who have found God’s truth and have a strong faith in it know that there is true freedom! A life of faith is demonstrated by someone who trusts God through time spent with him in prayer and reading his word. This is reflected in the decisions we make, our desires, and priorities. The longer we pursue a life of faith, the more we see these things change and line up with God’s purpose for our life. A Life of faith is marked by weighing everything in light of eternity and the purposes of God.
This sounds overwhelming and it can be, but there is a freedom that comes from it. It is a whole new way of life in which the cares of this world no longer have a strong hold on you and your way of thinking. Your worries, fears, and ambitions are different as you no longer strive for wealth and acceptance of others as your top priorities. Freedom comes from being content with what you have, knowing God has given you everything you need to make a living and will provide for any shortfall that may arise. As your faith grows and you seek to walk in his will for your life, the worries and stress of this world will fall away and you may become overwhelmed in a new way; wanting to make God happy through your new way of life.
This is where you stop and relax. A life of faith can be simple and should not be overwhelming internally. Simply ask God what to do, trust he will guide you then do it. If you don’t hear from him, move as you think you should and he will put you on track as long as you are continually seeking him to guide you. God will always come through and if you ask anyone walking in a life of faith for a while, they will tell you that it is usually at the last minute. He has a way of waiting until all options are exhausted and we are about to give up before he shows up, but when he does, it is amazing and way better than we could have ever planned or predicted. If you want to walk in a life of faith, all you need to do is begin your journey with the ultimate prayer, which is thanking Jesus for dying for your sins and committing to follow him and make him King of your life. Then you should get baptized, which is a discussion for another day, find a church that is bible based so you have people that will encourage you and provide good teaching. This puts you in a life of faith and you can continue in it by praying something similar to this prayer every day,
“Father, thank you for sending your Son to die for me. I want to live for you as he died for me. Please direct my thoughts, plans and actions into your will and show me where I need to change to be more like you. I trust you will guide me and not let me wander from your path. I will move in your silence trusting you will intervene when needed and I will keep an ear open for your voice and obey when I hear it. Increase my faith as I seek you with all my heart. Keep me from influences that would corrupt my faith in you, but do not remove me from them, rather let me be a light to them. In Jesus name, Amen.”
Prayer and scripture reading keep you on track – I recommend it every day, but not as an obligation. If it becomes an obligation than you might have missed the point. It should be like the excitement you would get as a kid when you knew you could go to the park and your friend would be there waiting to hang out with you all day. You will rush to get your chores done so you can leave and spend as much time with them as possible and you are very disappointed when they are not able to make it. God is always able to make it and as you walk in a life of faith, you will find freedom and contentment, which are things that you cannot order from Amazon and have here by the afternoon, even with Prime.