We come to the letter “F” in our Alphabet of Faith. We’re going to have it stand for faith.
“F” is for Faith!
We need faith in almost everything. We sit down for a bowl of cereal in the morning having faith the chair we sit in will hold us up. There’s the rush out the door to drive to our destination with just enough time to get there on time; we have faith our car will start. We grab a cup of coffee at work or at a local coffee shop and have faith it’s not tainted with arsenic. Once at work we punch the power button on the computer with faith that it will boot up.
True, sometimes our faith is not rewarded and we’re disappointed that our expectations aren’t met. An occasional disappointment doesn’t deter us, however. We simply can’t function by doubting at every turn, it would immobilize and debilitate. We always need faith.
When Disney World was completed someone made the comment that it was too bad that Walt Disney didn’t live long enough to see it. Someone else, who knew Walt well, said, “But he did see it. That’s why it’s here.”
The best of all definitions of faith is found in the book of Hebrews in the Bible. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1) What separates faith from fact is the unseen that is seen!
God seems to be into faith in a big way. He could make Himself far more obvious than He does – big and booming voice, a large image of Jesus molded out of cumulus clouds, and an instant and appropriate answer to a test prayer we might send up to Him. Instead, God seems to be, as some have put it, shy. Why? It appears that a relationship with Him has to have faith as a main ingredient.
Even at His resurrection Jesus first appeared to some women who then told the apostles about His being alive. Jesus could have appeared to the apostles first, seniority, you could argue. Instead, the apostles were required to grapple with having faith in what they had not themselves seen, before they were allowed to see for themselves. I suspect it gave them a greater appreciation for the faith that would be required in order for future listeners of their sermons to believe.
The great devotional writer Oswald Chambers said that “the call of God… presents us with sealed orders… Faith never knows where it is being led, it knows and loves the One who is leading.” (Daily Thoughts for Disciples p. 23) In seeking to be God’s person we usually have little idea of what He’s up to. As much as we might bow our head in prayer for guidance He doesn’t give us much of a “heads up” as to what He’s going to do. If you listen close enough you can almost hear Him whisper, “Trust me.”
Facts tend to find their home in the head. Faith, on the other hand, finds it home in the heart. God wants more than a head knowledge of His existence from us. He wants our heart, and that requires faith in Him!
Any ideas for “G” for next week in our Alphabet of Faith? Let me know.