For the Christian, faith isn’t an optional “add-on” like, cruise control, tilt steering, heated leather interior, rather; faith is “STANDARD EQUIPMENT” for the Believer! Remember, it was God’s gift of grace activated by your faith that got your saved! (See Romans 10:8-10 and Ephesians 2:8).
Your relationship with Christ was initiated by the Holy Spirit and His tender calling of your heart to the Father’s heart. It then took FAITH on your part to respond in kind. But once you become a Born-again Believer, your faith walk does not cease to exist; rather, it just got kicked into high gear! Hebrews 11:6 reads, ” But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Notice that the writer of Hebrews declares that without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God! Obviously, for the Believer, pleasing God should be right at the top of our “to do” lists!
In Mark’s gospel, Jesus encounters a fig tree. This tree failed to produce fruit although it “advertised” that it, indeed, had fruit! The leaves presented a false picture of productivity, even though the time of fruit bearing for fig trees at that time of year had not been reached. This tree had, in effect, said, “Come and eat from my tree. See my leaves?” When Jesus saw it he cursed the fig tree and said, “No man eat fruit from thee again hereafter forever.” Does Jesus’ assessment of the fig tree offend you? Does this seem to be a harsh reaction for the Lord Jesus Christ? In fact, the side of Jesus that you see before you in this story is the side of Him that most are not familiar with. In Matthew 10:34 Jesus said, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” He continues in verses 35-38 with the following:
“For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that takes not his cross, and follows after me, is not worthy of me” —Matthew 10:35-38
Wow! Pretty tough words for the one you and I call our Lord and Savior. The fact of the matter is that faith will always cost you something. If you’re REALLY ready to “walk by faith and not by sight” then step out of the boat and begin to experience faith on a whole new dimension! I can say that it won’t always be nice and sweet, and it may cut like a two-edged sword, but in the final analysis, it will be worth it all! – MTF
To learn more about Miles T. Fitzpatrick, visit milesfitzpatrickministries.com