“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.” – 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 (NIV)
Here is a simple fact: we all have faith. Even the staunchest atheist believes in something, even if that “something” is nothing. The question is not if you believe. The question is, where do you put your faith? And why? Because the truth of the matter is, your faith is going to determine your destiny – in a very eternal way.
What is faith? “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1, ESV). Faith (πίστις, pistis) is, by its definition, not just thinking something might be right. Faith is assurance. To truly have faith in something (or, in this case, Someone) is to convinced, to be unswervingly persuaded. It is to know that you know that you know. When you are convinced, convicted and connected, nothing is going to move you. Faith is the chain that tethers believers to our anchor, Jesus Christ.
We can’t see Heaven. We can’t see a way through our circumstances. We can’t see what is going to happen tomorrow – or even five minutes from now. But, as Christians, we have the assurance that Jesus is with us, the Holy Spirit is guiding us, God’s Word is absolutely right and true and accurate and God will “never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5). That means He will never abandon you. Never. Ever.
Stand firm in your faith in Jesus Christ. Do not be swayed. James described the person of uncertain faith as being “double-minded.” I think we can all relate to that, can’t we? We’ve all experienced times when Satan has roared at us like a lion, bearing his teeth and putting the fear in us. This is why Peter warns us – and it bears repeating:
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world – 1 Peter 5:8-9 (ESV).
The devil doesn’t want to eat our lunch. We are lunch! This is why it is so absolutely vital that we stand firm in our faith in Jesus, that we refuse to allow anything to get between us and God. And we have to be vigilant.
Today, I want to encourage you to firm up your faith. Stay anchored to Jesus. I cannot say it enough: pray, Bible, pray, Bible, pray, Bible… Paul writes that we should “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:7). In other words, always be in an attitude of prayer, ever mindful of the Lord’s presence. Be filled with joy and ready to defend what you believe in.
You have a job to do. Each of us has a God-given role, people to reach for Christ, love to give. Part of that will always require living out our faith. Are you ready to be bold for the Lord today? Steven Curtis Chapman sang about the life of faith being “the great adventure,” and he was right. Another simple fact: we are all driving in the dark, unsure of what the next minute may bring. Isn’t it better to have a guide who knows His way than to barrel on alone in the dark?