In discussing this question we have tried to draw insight from two of the Bible’s choice models: Abraham and Moses. They are great teachers for today, and hopefully we learned profound lessons from them as we see the obedience of their faith choices. So let’s begin to shift from them to ourselves in learning to walk by faith.
First, I think it is important to know that no matter where you are in your growth with Jesus, now is the time to trade up in desiring to trust God more. Today.
Every Christian is constantly in a state of learning, choosing, and being tested by God in our life with Jesus, and we all need to be teachable.
The book of Hebrews makes it very clear how important growth in our faith is to the Lord.
"And 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." -Hebrews 11:6
Now that is a strong statement by our Lord, and it’s key to understanding how God thinks and works in the lives of His people.
I have found that my biggest battleground in living by faith is fear, and I don’t think I am alone in this struggle. As a matter of fact, one of the most repeated phrases in the Bible is “fear not,” and our Lord had to say it to some pretty good men and women.
In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul was in Corinth, and the Lord had to tell him to stop being afraid because Jesus was with him.
"One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: 'Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. For I am with you, and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.'” –Acts 18:9-10
The difference between Paul and many of us is that he was quick to believe God and act with courage. But most times I find my fear is bigger than my willingness to trust my Lord.
Here are a few things that may help us next time when fear tries to rule our lives instead of God’s desires.
Fear is often rooted in not wanting to lose something that we think is important to our happiness. For example, I may want people to think highly of me, and if I mention Jesus Christ being the only way to God, those I speak to may think I am too narrow. I fear that they won’t want to associate with me—that I will lose their esteem if I go public with Jesus.
But by choosing to ignore what God has asked of me—to go and make disciples and to be His witness—I am saying that what people think of me is more important than what God thinks.
When my fear trumps my faith, and I say, “No,” to the Lord, I reveal my true master is not my Savior.
But when we say, "Yes," brothers and sisters, we will see and experience what God has for us. And to say, "No," leaves us without these experiences—which is a bigger consequence than you could imagine.
John's travels for ministry behind the Iron Curtain led him to found East-West Ministries International in 1993. John and his wife, Susie, live in Dallas, Texas and have a grown daughter and two grandchildren.