I’ve been practicing it a long time now. Faith it till I make it, that is. It all started with my conversion. I was looking for a new life! I somehow got it into my head that I wanted to test the promises and teachings of Jesus. They’ve been more or less challenging me ever since. I was determined to discover whether God would do what the Word says God will do and could I do what the Word says I can do.
Putting it simply, I was interested to know if and how faith works?
This is not talking about that false doctrine of me wielding God’s power and God doing my bidding. Neither is it the kind where you are told to stretch your faith by giving to the preacher to increase their bank account and you are promised in turn you will receive your miracle because of your faith. No, not that kind of ‘faith’.
I figured, the only way I’m going to get to know God is to read God’s word, the Bible, and put it to the test.
John 7: 17: Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own. https://biblehub.com/john/7-17.htm
I’m talking about reading and doing the teachings of the New Testament for starters which teaches, ‘we walk by faith and not by sight’ (2 Corinthians 5:7). Now, if you haven’t started yet I am here to encourage you to do so. You’ll be surprised how God helps as we experiment by taking some baby steps.
I’m sure you’ve seen babies do this . It’s in their genes. They start to roll, then they get on their belly and crawl. It is pretty funny to watch them. They improvise to learn what works. First they start pulling themselves around and then hang onto something and next thing they are up. Finally they’re standing, albeit wobbly. Once they get their balance they’re off. Finally you’re chasing them getting to obey your ‘stop’. The faith walk is like that.
That’s similar to us adding to our faith.
We are given saving faith. It is the gift of God. But don’t stop there. You want to add to your faith. Here’s the instruction from Peter . He writes…
‘God has committed God self to us through the costly and in the widest sense the most magnificent promises, so that by acting upon them they open up a heaven-to-earth-channel that through these promises you may become a companion, a genus of sorts, having common characteristics with the divine nature as you share in it , (having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire). (Paraphrase RBW with the help of Strong’s)
For this very reason add to your faith …
confidently introduce, simultaneously, and don’t hold back but eagerly contribute to the transformation the following: excellent and courageous acts (virtue); and add to virtue doctrine and wisdom, (knowledge); And to knowledge self restraint (temperance); and to temperance cheerful endurance (patience); and to patience devotion to the Gospel (godliness); And to godliness loving friendship with other members of the family of God (brotherly kindness); and to brotherly kindness affection and benevolence (charity). 2 Peter 1: 5-7. (Paraphrase: RBW with the help of Strong’s).
In a word: Start reading the bible and doing what it says.
Start by trying it out. Dont get nervous you’re going to fall or fail or go too far, or too close to the edge. Its ok, You can just roll with it. No one of any account in the overall scheme of things is accusing you.
You want to experiment more … you start growing up into all things.
If you stay a baby (and there are some like that), you’ll get unhappy and begin to whinge and whine.That’s because you are week in faith. You find it in spoilt kids and adults. Always whining about something.
This is the way the walk of faith is: Just begin.
Patricia says, “faith it till you make it”, and, whammo, all of a sudden things begin to shift and God in the presence of the Holy Spirit is on the scene.
Saving faith is the gift of God.
Think about it. If we as parents know how to give to our children good gifts, how MUCH MORE will be given to us who exhibit trust in God to give to us when we ask?
So…Pray and speak out loud what you believe
The law of faith is simple: I believe therefore I speak.
You have faith, you believe God is there, you believe so you pray. Prayer is our response to God stemming from our faith. Taking action is getting involved in what you believe is going to happen as a result of prayer and faith. If you earnestly pray to God and to increase your knowledge (I’m saying here what the bible teaches), ask anything in Jesus’ name. Learn how it works by doing it.
Don’t worry about your words or posture.
Pray and start finding a way to climb out of the hole you’re in
Whatever words we use and whatever the circumstances we find ourselves in, give thanks, have gratitude, Thank God whatever the circumstances that you’re in. This is the will of God. Even if it appears no-one else is attempting to involve themselves in whatever you are praying about at that given moment. Don’t be distracted by worry or anxiousness.
Pray and do act upon it: do something
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6.
However it comes about, once we decide to dip our toe into the water, so to speak, by praying and then doing, we are adding, not only head knowledge about God but living knowledge to our gift of faith. We are learning by doing. We are trying out how God works in response to our faith.
If you want to learn to drive at some time you’ve got to put the car into gear and your foot on the accelerator. Once you begin the car responds.
God responds to faith. Without works, doing something, anything, faith is dead. When you do something, anything, it ignites your faith. It’s your gift. You’ve got to use it. Once we hit it by doing something, anything, God again goes into action to match it and go far beyond it.
God makes a way where there is no way.
I recently heard someone explain it this way. You’re on P Plates. You get into the car to go on a journey. Everything is working. Fuel in the tank. You start the car, put it into gear pull away from the curb and next you come to a set of lights. The light is green and you go through it. You don’t start to worry about whether the next set is going to be red. You take it as it comes and finally you arrive wherever it is you set out for.
Once you’ve accomplished that journey your confidence and assurance goes up in your driving skills. Sure, there are rules, road maps, signals to alert you along the way. You can be as prepared as little or as much as you like. If you keep driving and you have the necessary means to get there you will.
God is for you and not against you.
On the road of life with God the good news is the goal posts don’t change: God never changes. The circumstances however do change, so here’s a clue: don’t give too much consideration to the circumstances, the reason being you are walking by faith and not by sight.
There’s no script to stick to other than the precious promises of God found in the bible. If you don’t have one or you don’t like reading or whatever, you can get hold of a CD. You can either buy one or pray for one. There’s your first step. Or ask for a talking book. Ask for whatever you want. Go ahead. Try it out.
You’re better not to talk to straight up and down no risky living on the fifth it till you make it walk on the wild side of life types. You don’t need people saying to you ‘you cant do that’. What they mean is I wouldn’t do that. This is your new life. Your new adventure with God at your side. Its a time of experimenting with your newfound faith. Its free-falling time.
Were not talking here about rashness. But you must go with your gut, after you have done the will of God, such as pray, that you might receive the promise. I’m not writing here for the scholars or the haves who can afford the cost of a ticket if they miss the plane.
I’m talking to ordinary people who don’t have the cost of a ticket. Im talking to people who dont have a bed. Im talking to people who are poor in spirit. Im talking form experience. I’m not quoting from a book I read. This is how I’ve lived forty of my fifty years as a christian. I’m encouraging you. You’re going to make it. I’m not saying you wont make some mistakes – its part of the journey.
Now, talking about the have-nots in faith but have lotsa dollars. They’ll have lots of rules too and try to regulate you. People tell you what you cant do because they don’t have the courage (faith) to attempt it. They then throw buckets of cold water on your faith experiments.
We do need good counsel. My sister Joy was mine before she went home. That one who led you to the Lord would be your first in rank. They’re most likely the kind Im talking about, faith-ing it till they make it. I don’t suggest the church leader because your friend introduced you, or such. I mean that believer who trailed your smashed up broken down life and just kept loving you through it all. They’re on your side.
Just go right ahead when you think you have a green light. It’s not so much as make it up as you go along. But faith is the green light so go and see if the next is a green or yellow or red. Just make a start. If it’s God you’ll get a nice surprise to encourage you.
There’s no set of rules to follow. Just good advice as to how it all works in the Kingdom of God. It doesn’t take a child to figure out how to be good. Obey the scriptures. So get a bible one way or another. Find out for yourself. Prove your faith. Don’t play it safe. Don’t hang on someone else’s experience. Discover the way in which the faithfulness of God is based upon the promises of God and your obedience to them.
In closing the thing I’m wanting to get across here is it is easy peasy but then again it’s not that easy. It’s just that if you’re willing to begin if you’re willing to try, its not science, but then again it’s not a leap into the dark either. But if your doing what I’m saying here you are taking some advice from someone whose done it and at 78 years of age has begun yet a new journey.
As someone said, ‘you can’t go under for going over’. If you get what I mean, which I’m sure you will if you do it.
Don’t think about it. That’s what the Ancient Greeks did. They thought about everything and argued and philosophised and debated. Alternatively the Hebrews approach to the God’s word was “obey God”
Mary the mother of Jesus said to her servants “whatever he says to you do it”. Proverbs says, “as a person thinks so are they. First Thessolonians says ‘give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus’.
I grew up with just the basics. You can keep up with my testimony under the menu heading, ‘My Personal Testimony’. I’ve been sharing with you about exercising your faith. That faith I’m talking about is the gift you get from God. It’s given to those willing to have-a-go. Allow me to explain what I mean by that.
Even though I didn’t know it, I first prayed ‘in faith’ after reading ‘A New Life’ by Pat Boone, a Hollywood movie and singing star. His wife was a christian from childhood but he came to it later in life. Boone said in his book that he got a new life. He and Shirley his wife started holding parties for all their friends around their swimming pool and sharing their story. This sounded ok to me. I was a party girl. I said to myself “if Pat Boone can do it I can do it”.
The next day I was walking down a suburban street to visit Joy, my sister. I recalled Sunday School stories I had been taught; Jesus on a cross and dying for me and all that.
It dawned on me at that moment these accounts were true! It startled me. Yes, Jesus died for me. I realised God loved me. When I arrived at my destination, I recounted to Joy what had transpired over the last twenty-four hours.
Joy listened and we got talking some more about it. I began to react to the idea of going to church. I now realise that I did not have to but that was the conversation at the time.
I said I was ok to be a christian but I had no intention of living in the way of what I thought was expected of me to be a Christian. Joy said that’s ok just talk about it to God. So I did. My sister invited me to pray a formal prayer with her. It went something like this ‘Jesus to come into my heart and save me”.
I again acknowledged to God in prayer I needed a new life. I also said I was not going to give up what I enjoyed such as my social life etc. I was looking for a new life but not a boring one! I was a girl of action!
I then added a challenge to God. It still makes me smile.
I said in prayer, “ok, I’ll try it, and I’ll give you (God) two weeks.” I figured if it didn’t happen by then I’d prove my sister wrong, a figment of her imagination and I would go on my way. If God could not deliver I’d find out for myself.
I experienced instant change in my mind. I started to experience the leading of God in my life. I began learning lessons fast on obedience and prayer. I discovered within the next few days the consequences of ignoring what I knew to be right. I’ll tell you about them next time we meet here.
Talk soon …
Introducing my friend Ruth …
Listen for yourself her testimony of a day she put the law of faith into action,
“I believed, therefore I speak”
Afters: How to search the Bible online: beginners short lesson.
A search in Google, such as, ‘finding God’s will bible’ came up with the following set of scriptures: https://www.biblestudytools.com/1-thessalonians/5-18.html Compiled and Edited by BibleStudyTools Staff on 3/30/2020. The problem with this kind of search is you may land on the right page then again you may not. You’re winging it. You don’t know if these writers know God or are copying and pasting.
I prefer to go to the source. The I go into my favourite online bible search ‘Bible Hub’ I type into their search engine: ‘Will of God’, very many scripture references come up. I click on https://biblehub.net/search.php?q=will+of+god
I chose John 7: 17 from all the texts that came up :
‘Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own’. https://biblehub.com/john/7-17.htm
I then looked at the top of that page and I can choose from a range of subjects and bible helps. Set aside an hour and try them all out to see what they offer. If for example I choose ‘Sermons, I get on the subject., many famous old preachers sermons Topical? to further click on other subjects that will lead me into greater understanding on what the bible says about the will of God, Strong’s? if I want to know the original Hebrew or Greek for every word in the scripture I am searching, in this case it will be Greek and will give me the Strong’s to click on for a particular word Im interested in. Comment? if I want to see a comment by various preachers on this scripture. Interlinear? if you want to see the exact Greek translation, and so on. I encourage you to begin to learn more than surface reading of the text.