Moments in the life of a Pastor

Walking with God

30 Faith not sight

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2 Corinthians 5:7 “For we live by faith, not by sight”

2 Corinthians 5:7 teaches us that faith is not predicated upon sensual perception. While on this planet and in our present state faith supplies our sight. This is sight not based on sensual perception but spiritual connection. The problem is that many of us by in to the old saying seeing is believing. We may proclaim that we live by faith yet most practice living by sight. Instead of believing we are burning ourselves out, trying to make things happen on our own. When we trade faith for sight our trust is replaced by trying and our rest is reduced to running.  Instead of being moved by the Messiah we start managing and manipulating our own lives. Instead of relying on the Redeemer we rest on our results.  We may talk about God’s power yet we follow our own plan. We talk about God’s love without follow His leading.  We reduce His mercy to a mental exercise while His compassion is replaced with competition. Faithfulness dissolves into fretting and His righteousness is trumped by our rights. We talk about His will but do what we want. We talk about the ability of the Almighty without acknowledging or admitting our inadequacies. Romans 14:23 tells us that everything that does not come from faith is sin. A lack of faith is not weakness it is wickedness because when we live by sight we are living as if the Savior doesn’t even exist. Instead of lives filled with worship there is worry, instead of singing there is stress, instead of faith there is fatigue, instead of truth we have tension, instead of the Savior there is sin. Sure you can walk by sight but you can’t win, sight will sink us every time. Faith moves us to pray and patiently wait on the Lord while sight seeks to work for self. Faith is forged as we focus on the father and we do that through prayer. If we want to move forward in faith we must pray in His presence.  Prayerlessness demonstrates self-sufficiency where a diligent prayer life demonstrates desperation for God and a dependence on God. Prayer is not an attempt to persuade God to do or give us something it is an opportunity to get to know Him. Many think that praying is an attempt to win God over to our side when prayer is really about positioning ourselves with God. Faith is not just about prayer it is also about purity, coming and confessing our sins before the Savior. When we stop confessing we start conforming, and repentance gets replaced by self-reliance. Faith involves prayer and purity as well as patience, James 1 tells us that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. One of the biggest mistakes in our faith walk is moving ahead of the Master. Hebrews 6:12 reminds us to not lag behind and become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised. Our great test of faith will be our willingness to wait on God. When Moses got ahead of God and struck and killed the Egyptian taskmaster he spent 40 years waiting.  We will always short circuit God’s power when we try to accomplish things in our own strength. Hebrews 11:13-14 says: “All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth.” They pressed on toward the promise. Genuine faith is a compelling conviction that will not let you quit.

It is our mandate to walk with God by faith, for we cannot walk with God sensually only spiritually. Walking by faith involves seeing what we do not behold and can only believe. It’s easy to be moved more by our feelings but as Christians we must remember that we live by faith not feelings. That means God loves me even when I do not feel like worshiping or praising Him. God loves me even when I fall short and succumb to temptation and feel unworthy of His grace. God is faithful even when I am not faithful. God is still there even when I cannot feel His presence. God’s grace, love, and mercy, is not measured according to my ability to feel. The knowledge that His mercy endures forever is a fact not a feeling. My feelings are fleeting, I may be excited today but discouraged tomorrow, yet God’s grace does not disappear because I feel unworthy of it. I’m not saying that we should be unemotional people, feelings are fine until they become a substitute for faith. My feelings are fleeting but faith gives me a foundation, I have never seen God with my eyes or felt him with my hands but by faith I know he is my Father. Today you may feel unworthy of God’s love, but through faith you are called to live based on the facts, you have a forgiving Father who loves you. Faith is conviction accompanied by corresponding action, so today I choose to live a loved life, based on a faith that is forged in the Fathers forgiveness. What are you waiting for, won’t you join me?

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