PBY: Faith 1.4
048 — Excerpt from Purpose Built Young: A Guide to Pioneering Your Journey, buy a copy here.
Grind Faith Part 2
Matthew 15 and 17 are not in conflict. What is happening in this story is that Grind Faith is beginning to take on a new role on Jesus’ terms. Not to miss sight of the definition of faith in Hebrews 11, we will use a simple definition here: initiate your walk towards God.
You believe in something. That means you have faith in something. Grind Faith is carried in everything you do from taking customer orders at work to praying. Every day, you probably don’t question if salvation is real or if your experiences with Jesus are real. Rather, the questions of faith come in believing God in the midst of a storm, during a season of expansion, and in the uncertainty of life.
There, on every church website, is a list of the tenets of faith. The tenets of faith are the pillars the church represents like God is triune, Jesus is the Son of God, Jesus died and rose again, miracles still happen today, and a few more.
To believe God is triune is easier for me than to believe that Jesus is real. That He is the Son of God is simple for me, too. When it comes to miracles, I struggle. When it comes to believing every chapter of the Bible, I struggle, too.
We can easily build walls between ourselves and others (ministries, churches, faith-based organizations, and people) by this almost subconscious pattern of faith. When, for the average person, it is difficult to believe all the tenets of faith, all the time.
Many (not all) teach an ‘if you take one you get them all’ type of faith. Of course, I am not saying we can separate these truths.
Instead, realize that faith is more about developing a set of beliefs rather than a one-size-fits-all uniform. It’s a personalized journey.
For me, believing in miracles and understanding that the entire Bible is holy took time. I am still learning to believe. To see people come to Jesus, experience healing, and pray for the sick took stages. To see the stories from the tower of Babel to the rebuilding of the wall to the stories of Paul’s missionary journey as part of God’s holy word required thoughtful prayer and devotion to fully believe.
The point is this: Jesus is more interested in people who can be real about their current situation and what they believe than to wear a superficial persona of faith.
In a perfect world, my college career would have been marked with well-thought-out scheduling and preparation for exams and papers. I would study weeks in advance. Know the testable material from cover to cover and even be able to pose interesting topic conversations around the course content. During my years of study, this was seldom the case. I studied last minute, with late nights and early mornings, trying to cram five chapters of information into my mind for an hour of mental vomiting onto the page. It was the best I, and many other students, could do with busy schedules and loads of information to consume.
When taking a multiple choice exam, you learn some of the tricks of the trade. You become a better test-taker. You find out how to eliminate the definite wrong answers first. Then, read each question carefully to make sure that one part of it is not off-base. If it is, you eliminate that answer as well. You compare. You jot all the notes in your head. Then, if you are still unsure, you go to the first answer you felt in your gut was accurate. If all else fails, go for C!
Our faith is not supposed to be like a multiple choice exam. You cannot study, prepare, or rehearse to get every question right. Preparation is highly important for us so we can do our best during the exam. Even more so, it is not only to get the right answer, so you can say you have an A+ in life. It’s not about having all the answers right. It’s the continual decision to believe. Not to be perfect or never make a mistake. On the contrary, because you probably will fail often. Failure is not bad. It is not (and this will be important for some of you) tied to making a mistake. Just because you failed doesn’t mean you are a loser or not going the right way. It tends to mean that you are trying.
(Plus, waiting in life for the answer could be deadly.)
With heart, faith is a constant decision to continue to step forward (initiating your walk towards God), whether you know the answer or guess C.
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