We lay a prayer before God, a prayer for healing, financial stability, or perhaps for the salvation of a loved one. Whatever the case may be, these prayers resonate in our hearts. We sit; we wait. We check the clock and calendar for time passed on unanswered prayers. Maybe being still and patient is what is required of you, but sometimes God wants us to put our money where our mouth is. He wants us to establish our faith by an action.
In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
The first recorded miracle in the gospels is Jesus turning water into wine. He didn’t just say, “boom” and wine appeared, although He is capable of this. He required His disciples to outwardly establish their faith in Jesus through obedience. Asking His disciples to put water into ceremonial cleaning cisterns, then drawing from those cisterns, trusting God they were drawing wine for the master of the banquet. Ok, did I say that correctly… Yes. Cleaning cisterns. Sounds kind of gross. I wonder if the disciples were thinking, “you want us to do what, and give this water to the master of the banquet?” Whatever their thoughts or fears, they obeyed, and God did fulfill His promise. The water had turned into the best wine of the night, but God required an action on the disciples part to reveal himself in this situation.
A man blind until Jesus entered his life. Jesus put mud on his eyes, and told the man to go to the pool of Siloam and wash. Not until he left the pool did he come home seeing. If the man refused to obey, perhaps he would still be blind. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes us coming to the place where we have nothing to lose to actually look to God and simply obey.
We say we have faith and believe in God, but never open our mouth with the things we profess to believe behind closed doors. Or worse yet, boldly proclaim, yet fail to represent a life changed by God. If we are not confident to share what we believe with others, do we really believe it ourselves? When I see people confidently taking a stand for what they believe, it is an alluring quality. It draws me to desire the confidence needed to be that bold. To continue to seek out truth and fully have a grasp on what I believe, not only in words, but also in action. With the hopes that it will draw others to the saving grace of God.
If we sit waiting for that unanswered prayer, maybe we should consider that the next step is action. Is God laying on your heart to witness to a friend? Perhaps you are in financial distress and God is telling you the way He will provide is through a new job, or perhaps financial cuts that may initially cramp your style? Are you praying for opportunities to serve and realize the opportunity God is leading you to is serving with somebody you don’t like, or something that you didn’t think was for you? Do you say you trust God, yet when you feel the gentle nudging of the Holy Spirit to say or do something, you always find yourself second guessing?
Obedience isn’t just on our terms. Obedience that makes faith come alive is obedience for whatever God calls you to and through, even if we can’t comprehend it at the moment. God sees the big picture. Lets keep our eyes and hearts open to the opportunities God has for us and watch as God does more than we can ever ask or imagine.
We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Thessalonians 1:3
Photo Credit: by Sonnenstrahl