You believe in God. You trust Jesus as your Savior. You enjoy the fellowship of church on Sunday. But where does your faith fit in your everyday life? What is your reality?
Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.” (Matthew 7:21) James added that anyone who is merely a hearer of God’s Word and not a doer is deceiving himself (James 1:22).
So, where does your faith fit in your everyday life? What is your reality? Are you deceiving yourself?
When the Bible says,
“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.” (Col. 3:5)
Do you assume it doesn’t apply to you? Or do you tell yourself that as long as you are not doing all of those things all of the time that you are okay?
When Jesus says, “…seek first his kingdom and his righteousness…” do you assume He means, “As long as you go to church on Sunday, it’s okay to put yourself and your own priorities first the rest of the time?” Or do you believe He really means to seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness as the number one priority in your life on a daily basis?
Sometimes I wonder whether we have gotten it into our heads that we will be blessed just because we come to church and listen to God’s Word. And, yes, hearing the Word of God is a wonderful thing. But Jesus said, “If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them. (John 13:17)” And again, “…blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.” (Luke 11:28)
Now, I am not saying you will be condemned if you mess up sometimes. If you confess your sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive your sins and cleanse you from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). But what I want to ask you is this, Where does your faith fit in your everyday life?
You see, your faith is not just something you know in your head or something you feel in your heart. True faith motivates your actions and forms the basis of your choices. If what you say you believe does not match up with the way you live your life, then–according to God’s Word–your faith is dead. If your faith is faith in words only, and it is not lived out in your actions, then your faith is dead. (Go read James 2:14-26)
Now, in case you are thinking that you really do have faith, but you just haven’t quite got it all figured out yet, and as soon as you get it figured out, then you will put it into action… let me tell you a little secret. In God’s kingdom, if you want to understand, you first have to obey. Yes, I know, that seems backwards. You want to understand first, before you obey, but the truth is God just doesn’t work that way. If you begin by doing what He tells you to do, you will gain understanding. And, to be honest, there will be some things for which you will just have to trust God because it won’t make any sense to you. But isn’t that what faith is all about? Hebrews says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1) If I wait until I can understand it all and see the outcome, I am not walking by faith, I am walking by sight (2 Cor. 5:7).
Stepping out in faith means trusting in and acting in obedience to God’s Word, whether or not you understand it, whether or not it seems to make sense to you, and yes, even though it is scary. Having faith does not mean you won’t be scared. Having faith means trusting God even when you are scared. So, Where does your faith fit in your everyday life?