Today, let’s shift from discussing their lives to how you and I can learn to walk by faith.
First, 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. Not tomorrow.
Every Christian is constantly in a state of learning, choosing, and being tested by God in our life with Jesus. We need to remain teachable. The book of Hebrews makes it very clear how important growing 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 from our Lord, and it’s key to understanding how God thinks and works in the lives of His people.
My biggest battleground in living by faith is fear, and I know I’m not alone in this struggle. As a matter of fact, the most repeated phrase in the Bible is “fear not” or “don’t be afraid,” and our Lord had to say this to many of the heroes of our faith.
When the Apostle Paul was in Corinth, the Lord even had to tell him to stop being afraid with the reminder that 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.
In my own life, I often find that my fear is bigger than my willingness to trust the Lord. This fear is often rooted in not wanting to lose something that I believe is important to my happiness.
For example, I may want people to think highly of me, and if I mention Jesus Christ being the only way to God, they may think I am too narrow. In this instance, I fear that they won’t want to associate with me and that I will lose their approval 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 making what people think of me more important than what God thinks of me.
When fear trumps faith, and we say, “No,” to the Lord, this reveals that our true master is not our Savior.
But when we say, "Yes," brothers and sisters, we see and experience more of what God has for us. To say, “No” leaves us without these experiences—which is a bigger consequence than you and I can imagine.
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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.