Walking by faith requires taking some risks

Last time, we began exploring three faith-inspired principles.

The first principle is that you can’t play it safe and please God. We know Jesus was obedient, even to the point of death on the cross. Nobody standing at the foot of the cross thought that scene looked like a success. But we know that Christ’s obedience led to the greatest victory in the history of the world.

Principle 2: Faith does not come with a guarantee. If you have a guarantee, you don’t have faith. The writer of Hebrews said it like this: “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” – Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)

Isn’t that the thing that interferes with our faith? We want a guarantee. It is like we are asking God to give us a safety net before we are willing to take a step of faith. We want to know how everything is going to work out ahead of time. We are looking for security. Our security is to be found in the promises and in the presence of God, not in any other source or circumstance.

When I was in high school, I remember feeling physically ill before calling a girl to ask her out on a date. There was so much insecurity. What if she said no? Potential rejection loomed on the horizon. Every guy wants a guarantee. That’s why we wrote those notes asking questions like, “Do you like me?” If we could get some kind of promise as a guarantee, that would change everything about our confidence in the ask.

When it comes to our relationship with God, wouldn’t it be nice if we could get some kind of written guarantee that everything was going to work out? Unfortunately, that is not how faith works. You can have faith or you can have control, but you can’t have both. Sometimes, we just have to take a step of faith and say, “This is what I believe God is calling me to do.” It can be a scary place, but this is what reveals our level of confidence in God.

In living a life of faith, you typically can’t see the end from the beginning. We’re inclined to say, “God, I will take this first step of faith, but first, I want to know what happens down the road. Where will this step lead? What do steps four, five and six look like?”

God’s not going to show you steps four, five and six until you take steps one, two and three. He wants us to trust him. The only guarantee is that God will prove himself faithful. He always does.

Steve Greene is the lead pastor at The Point in Seymour. You may email him at [email protected]. His weekly blog can be found at pastorgreene.wordpress.com. Send comments to [email protected].