What is Faith?
God honors and blesses ONE thing consistently in the Bible. Faith. Through the elaborate stories of some of our favorite profiles like Abraham, Moses, Noah, and even Jesus, we see faith not just spiritually regarded, but LIVED OUT.
Faith can be defined as complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
As God proves Himself faithful to us, in turn–our faith in Him grows more and more. We begin to learn and see how we can depend on God for anything as life happens and our faith is tested. “Faith killers” is what I’ve termed those horrific tests and self inflicted trials that threaten to steal our faith. I’m a firm believer that life and Satan can take a great deal of things away from us, but the 1 thing that matters most–theee Preciousss as Gollum would say–is our faith. If life or the enemy can kill our faith, then our destiny on Earth, and spiritual eternity will soon follow.
Faith is Not a Feeling
I’m learning (that’s right, “ing”, meaning, STILL figuring it out, lol!), that the kind of faith that pleases God, has nothing to do with how I feel.
Although I believe faith to be deeply rooted in hope, I know that unshakable faith does not always FEEL hopeful.
I often reflect on some of my favorite characters from the Bible. They’re usually people who withstood INCREDIBLE hardships by utilizing one main tool: faith. From Noah trusting God to keep him and his family safe through an Earth altering flood, to the centurion in Luke 7 believing his soldier would be healed by Jesus’ words alone, or even ALL the way back to Abraham, believing God would bless him with a son in his old age. These very NORMAL humans had 1 super simple thing in common. They took God at His word. And that was enough for them to keep going. That’s it. They simply heard what God said, and believed it. In an essence, this was hope, and as we mentioned before–hope is the very root of faith.
Luke 7: 6-7 (NIV)
“Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof.7 That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.
Nonetheless, I can’t help but wonder if Noah, the centurion, or even Jesus, ALWAYS felt hopeful. It’s impossible for anyone to feel hopeful all the time. The nature of feelings is that they change; some days you feel awesome, other days your’e looking for the nearest rock to hide under. However, if you live a life committed to taking God at His word, when hopelessness veers his trifling head, you remember the truth of God’s word. You remember that God’s word can never come back to Him void, and that His word is more powerful than anything you can ever “feel” in this life! God’s word will still be there and still be true, long after this life on Earth and anything we face here. So let’s commit to take God at His word, and trusting it as supreme over all we see, hear, and most importantly, FEEL!
Matthew 24:35 (NIV)
Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
What Kills Our Faith? Most Common Faith Killers
Have you ever been on your little walk of faith, feeling good, living good, and BAM! You get hit with an obvious attack from the enemy that feels like a straight up attempted robbery of your faith! Yea, me neither, (sarcasm), lol. Well, guess what? A lot of the time, it’s not even the enemy that’s to blame for our faith muscles being weak–it’s us. If we’re gonna do this faith walk right, and stay strapped in the spirit (insert fake gang signs), we have to identify our OWN behavioral patterns that seek to destroy a life of faith. What are they? Glad you asked, lol let’s hop in!
Failure to TRULY reverence God
When one truly, I mean TRULY, reveres God, trusting Him becomes easier & easier. When I came to understand how big, mighty, powerful, sovereign, and most of all, HOLY, God is, I immediately made the connection that if God can do & be ALL THIS, surely, I can trust that He’ll take care of me.
I love nature. Going for a hike, rock climbing, sitting backyard in the country, or at my favorite place–the beach, are all mini heavens for me. The main reason I love nature so much, is because it makes me & my problems seem super tiny. Nature helps me revere God as the all powerful being that He is; the creator of all this amazing goodness surrounding me. Seriously, anytime I’m outdoors, I almost break out in worship, lol!
Doing whatever make you feel small, and God feel big, is necessary to keep a sincere and genuine reverence for God. Reverencing Him often will in turn help you trust Him, thereby, increasing your FAITH!
P.S.–If nature gives you the feels about God too, check out THIS awesome read, “Earth: A Gift From God”, it’ll bless you!
Can God rrreeaallyy do this?!
Is Jesus seriously enough to get me through this?!
If you’ve ever asked yourself questions like this while going through it, we can probably be friends, lol! Life is sometimes just plain old, HARD! Doubt is the oldest faith killer in the book. Like literally, the oldest one in the book, remember Eve and them?! Doubt can make us forget how mighty God is, how gracious He has promised to be, and how faithful He has always been to us.
Jeremiah 32:27 (NIV)
“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?
When you feel doubt creeping up in your spirit, commit in that moment to let courage step in! Be courageous enough to stand in the truth of God’s promise, to never leave you, nor forsake you! (Deuteronomy 31:6)
If you follow me on Youtube, in the coming weeks, you’ll be viewing a series I’m starting all about what feels unnatural but is actually pleasing to God. Guess who’s up 1st? That ugly spirit of pride! Pride feels quite natural, I mean, God is good and stuff, and made us all popping in our own unique ways. But the unnatural characteristic–the complete opposite of pride–is humility. And this is the one that pleases God. By the way, if you want to keep up with this series and see my other videos, subscribe to my Youtube now, by clicking HERE!
Pride makes me think that this problem I’m facing is so big, and so unique, and more ’bout it than the Almighty God Himself. I mean, I can’t possibly trust God and that’s it? Don’t I have to DO something to make sure this gets handled? Who I gotta talk to?! lol.
If we let it, pride will have us somewhere trying to “work” out the destiny of our lives, because we’re too arrogant to simply be faithful and yield to God’s sovereignty.
James 4:6 (NIV)
6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud
but shows favor to the humble.”
Not Taking the Time to Know God’s Character
Getting to know God is very much like getting to know a person here on Earth. You spend time together so much that you can distinguish their voice amongst others, you can spot their presence in any setting, and you genuinely begin to care for them. You even begin to trust them after a while.
In my opinion, 1 of the most paramount reasons for even reading the Bible, is to know and understand God’s character.
Knowing who God is, through examples of His behaviors with other people, through what He says Himself in the word, or through deep prayer and worship, is the catalyst for trusting Him with our lives.
If you don’t know who God is, by having learned His ways through prayer & study, how can you possibly place your hope in Him? Don’t let laziness in seeking to know God’s character steal your potential for unwavering faith!
Consistently Faithful: How to Really Stay Strapped
Aite. You made it this far. We can probably go ahead and be friends for real forreal?! lol.
No, seriously, if you’ve made it this far, I’m so inspired by your commitment to lead a faithful life. It’s not easy. Especially in the climate of today’s culture, where faith seems antiquated and powerless. But I’m with you in this fight! It’s literally the most important one of your life. And I got some tools below to help you stay strapped in this thang! Okay, let’s get it:-)
Daily worship, reflection, and prayer
Why are we so mistrusting of strangers? Easy–we don’t know them! lol. So let’s commit to not letting God become a stranger to us. The less time we spend in His presence through worship and prayer, the harder it becomes to trust Him.
Everyday make it a goal to offer up some sort of praise I like to do mine 1st thing in the morning before the gym. I continue wherever I am with my Bible study, pray, read from my devotional or some type of Christian book, and run around singing to Jesus like a crazy person. It’s awesome. And there is no right or wrong way, do whatever makes you feel closest to God.
Constant reflection on the history of your relationship with God
When we draw back to the precious memories we have with God, it makes us more & more dedicated to be faithful to Him with our future. I like to flip through old journals and see the tear stained pages of where I poured my little heart out to Jesus, and remember exactly how I felt as I wrote it. Then I think about where I am present day, and how God was faithful to bring me out! How I’m still alive–even though I would have bet you all my coins I’d be dead lol, I’m so extra sometimes!
Whether it’s in your car on the ride to work, or while you’re in the shower, for however long the memory lasts, think back on God’s grace and perfect record of right standing with you. Let it encourage you to stay faithful to Him in return.
Frequently reciting scriptural affirmations
I’m gonna be real with you: I don’t do this, lol. Well, I do keep a ton of notebooks from my personal Bible study, loaded with scriptures. However, I don’t frequently recite them! There’s so much power in daily affirmations. I’m committing to doing this everyday with you guys:-)
Begin by gathering 5 or 6 of your favorite scriptures on faith and trusting God. Write them in your notebook, on sticky notes, or index cards, or even make a note in your iPhone with them. Say these scriptures aloud every single day, to affirm them as truths in your spirit. If your days are hectic, try setting a daily alarm for this, in the morning preferably, to be sure you get it in! I’ll be right there with you on this 🙂
Burying yourself into “good soil”
Good soil. Anything can grow from it. Including your faith! Immerse yourself into a community of like minded believers to make sure your faith muscles stay strong, and that you’re not far from backup for these spiritual battles to come. That’s right, to come. Just because we luh God, doesn’t make us exempt from pain, trials, or hardships. But by being around other believers, we’re exposed to beautiful testimonies and other hearts devoted to Christ, that will encourage us to keep being faithful!
Also, I follow some awesome accounts of young people, truly on fire for Christ over on Instagram, or I can leave you some recs in the comments below, just hit me! By the way, Instagram is no substitute for church or having a real life family of believers, but I know you’re gonna be on the gram all day anyway, might as well follow some solid members of the body! lol
Fight the Good Fight But Don’t Forget Your Shield
Everything that matters most in life is about our responses to happenings, not the actual things that happen to us. I think this is why is Ephesians 5, where the armor of God is discussed, faith is described as a shield. Putting up your shield is a response to an attack. Faith is to be our response to anything that happens to us in this life. It is our literal shield of protection in war!
I know this life has and will continue to feel like it’s knocking the very life out of me. But I also know, that God has been faithful to me. That He has let nothing happen to me that hasn’t ultimately worked out for my good. I’m dedicated to being faithful to God:
- when I don’t understand
- when He feels verrrryyy far away
- when my life looks LIT
- when my life sucks
- when I’m literally all alone
- when it’s not fair
Okay, you get it. I’m in this thang fo’ever & ever. Not because it feels good–sometimes it feels AWFUL. But because everyday, I’m going to take God at His word, and believe He’ll take care of me.
Don’t let the enemy, or even yourself do spiritual drive-bys on your life! lol. STAY STRAPPED!
This is a fight for your eternity. But we can trust that we have the most powerful King ever in charge of this battle. Stay encouraged my love:-)
All my best💋,