“Now faith is the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen…Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him.”
Hebrews 11:1, 6
“Prepare for the worst.”
“Be sure you have a backup plan.”
“Don’t leap until you know where you’re going to land.”
“Protect yourself, you never know what they’re going to do to you.”
Faith Works: There is no Plan “B”
Lately I’ve been having conversations with many people about faith and how it works. That’s why I decided to write this series of posts related to “How Faith Works”. It just seems that many of us don’t know exactly how to process the things time brings to us as we travel along on this path towards eternity.
It also seems that we walk along in life just assuming that everything is going to always turn out just fine. Ho-humming through life, we think that living life for ourselves, selfishly carrying out our daily tasks, building our own little “kingdoms”, that everything will just be ok. As long as you don’t hurt anyone, what’s the harm in gathering up comfort, safety, convenience, and security for you and your family. That’s what this life is all about isn’t it? Taking care of you and yours?
Unless, of course, that’s not what life is about. Unless, of course, we’ve been missing something all along the way. Unless, of course, God has an opinion about all of this.
It’s interesting to me how, when we look at God’s life among us, the life of Jesus… we really see a man who has no backup plan. With Jesus, there is no Plan “B”. He comes with great intentionality, superior leadership skills, and a face set towards a future that will lead him to severe persecution, suffering, and ultimately a cross.
There is no Plan “B” for Jesus.
And he doesn’t come into this world with a message of gloom and doom like so many Christian people I know. Jesus doesn’t come in telling us how we can return to some kind of nostalgic past where everything was good and our worlds were peaceful and everyone loved each other. Jesus never communicates retreat.
Forward Momentum and Movement
The temptation to listen to the advice that tells you to “Prepare for the Worst” is a temptation into fear.
In fact, that’s probably the best definition of fear: preparing for the worst.
But the impetus to move forward, the intentional setting of your heart and mind upon preparing for the best…that is faith.
Jesus clearly told us “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” It is this overcoming the world part that is where faith takes over.
Jesus is leading the charge into darkness. And if I read my Bible correctly, the invitation is standing for us to pick up ourselves and go into all the world, co-laboring with Christ to make apprentices of His ways and His Kingdom. This is forward motion. Faith is not about retreating in fear, but about moving forward in confidence in our King. We may not get everything we ask for along the way, and we may not enjoy the process.
Every battle has casualties. That’s just the reality of it. But we must begin living life from a different perspective or else we will never see the reality of a life in the Kingdom of Heaven. That life is counter-intuitive… in other words… it doesn’t make sense. But Jesus never called us to an existence that we could control, make comfortable, or live in self-made castles with security systems… He called us to live in faith.
Fear builds a wall. Fear hoards for itself. Fear teaches retreat.
Faith walks into uncertainty with confidence.
Faith is generous.
Faith is an advance mentality.
Faith is an adventure.
An unrisky venture is just not an adventure.
Let the journey begin.