Food for Thought - On Faith
I paused at the drive-through and studied the menu. Ice cream! Sure, I deserved a treat. What would it be? Goodness, there were too many choices; and if I didn’t act quickly, my better sense would override the temptations in front of me.
What about an Oreo peanut butter shake? A chocolate chip cookie dough blizzard? Oh, wow, that hot fudge sundae with creamy vanilla ice cream, nuts and whipped topping was making my mouth water. Frozen treats, smoothies, slushies, floats, shakes, sundaes, blizzards, blasts ….
As I waited on my treat, obviously giving in to temptation, I began thinking about the state of my faith. What if I compared my faith in Christ to the menu?
Frozen ice cream: Is my faith frozen and stagnant? Is it unyielding, never growing or strengthening? Simply stuck in the same spot it has been for years?
Smoothie: Do I believe I have my faith all figured out so I can just slide through life now? Do I think I know everything about Christ there is to know so I can hit pause on studying God’s Word and spending time in His presence?
Slushie: Is my faith a blended concoction? Do I honestly know what I believe and live by that belief? Or is the truth of God’s Word scrambled in with my worldly thinking?
Float: Maybe I’m floating along in my faith, content with the status quo of what I think I know, unconcerned with growing my faith. Do I believe He owes me all His promises in Scripture and that I don’t need to do anything in return?
Shake: What if my faith is all mixed up to the point that I don’t know exactly what I believe about Christ?
Sundae: Is my faith a combination of half or questionable truths? Have I chosen what looks best in Scripture and what seems most appealing in the world and mixed them up into my own version of faith?
Blizzard: Please tell me my faith isn’t a disaster waiting to happen. I pray I haven’t built my faith on assumptions and other people’s opinions rather than on knowing the truth of God’s Word for myself?
Blast: I honestly want my faith to be like an ice cream blast. I long for it to be the joy of my life - strong and healthy, continuously growing and deepening - so that my relationship with and understanding of Christ is joyful and strong, deep and life-nourishing.
Some days the state of my faith varies between all of these “flavors”. Unfortunately. Some days it is easy to focus on deepening my faith and spending time with Christ. Other days, I ignore Him or think I have it all figured out. Some days I simply slide or float. Sometimes I’m too vulnerable to the influences around me that weaken my faith.
When Christ was talking to the apostles about resisting temptations (Luke17:5 ESV), they all begged Him to increase their faith. Can we pray the same as we are tempted by flavors (or attitudes) that are not centered on Christ?
Increase our faith!
I don’t mean to make you hungry, but why don’t you stop with me and consider the state of your own faith. How strong is it? What place does it have in your day-to-day living? Is it worth making Bible study and time in the presence of Christ a priority? Is there anything more you can do to enrich and deepen your faith?
Test yourselves to make sure you are solid in the faith. Don’t drift along taking everything for granted. Give yourselves regular checkups. You need firsthand evidence, not mere hearsay, that Jesus Christ is in you.
2 Corinthians 13:5 MSG
Our faith is a journey. We begin with salvation and walk step-by-step into eternity – with Christ by our side every step of the way. Our faith will never be perfect or complete. It should not be static but should be ever growing. We grow as we learn.
How about we all commit to grow our faith more this week. I don’t know about you, but I want to be more faith-full!
Hugs and blessings,
Dear Jesus, I know my faith needs to grow stronger. My life really needs to be more firmly planted in the truth of Your Holy Word. Please bless me with a hunger for You this week rather than ice cream! You are the treat I need! Amen.