Hebrews 11:1-3(NIV). Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
The writer of the letter to the Hebrews is encouraging the believers to remain faithful to the God who called them. Faith is one of the subjects that widely preached about, especially in my part of the world. For some, faith is kind of a currency that one needs to get whatever they want. It is like some kind of magic that one needs in order to leap into the unknown and the impossible. According to some preachers, faith is all about feeling and thinking positively about ourselves and circumstances—and our potential to become or achieve anything we want. We are the objects of faith. We are essentially taught to trust in ourselves.
This, however, is different from biblical faith, whose object is the Triune God. Faith is the confident hope; the promised good beyond us. This hope is more than mere optimism; it derives from God. Faith—genuine faith—is our response to God’s promises. But if the character of the One who promises were flawed, we would have no confidence in Him. So, essentially, our Christian faith is premised on the unchanging character of the living God, the creator of heaven and earth. We can believe in His Word because it is consistent with who He is.
Christian faith begins and ends with God. It is Him who sets the agenda. It is Him who knows the end—the goal, the purpose, the consummation—of all things. It is the almighty God who is in charge of every single detail. Our role, therefore, is to respond to Him in obedience and trust. This trust is based on our relationship with Him as our heavenly Father. He knows what is best for us even though it might not seem to be what we really wanted.
Sometimes our faith will result in us accomplishing great things, humanly speaking. At other times our faith in God could result in us losing the very things we hold dear, including our own lives. In other words, it is God who sets the agenda; not us. Faith is not about us winning or losing but rather honoring God with our lives and everything else.
In what ways can the faith of those who went before you motivate you to keep trusting in God?
Dear heavenly Father, You are faithful. Your Word is trust worthy. Please teach me to trust in You, especially during times when things may not be going my way. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.