More to faith

Friday, May 4, 2012
Pistis, the greek for faith: firm persuasion, conviction, belief in truth, reality or faithfulness. The first thing that comes to mind when I hear faith is Hebrews 11:1’s definition, “Now faith is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you do not see.” This faith is based on fact; Christ’s resurrection from the dead. This is faith that I stand on; faith that saves me from death. However, digging deeper, I never understood faith to mean firm persuasion about what God wants you to do. Romans 14:22 says, “The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.” In application I might paraphrase, “Where and how God leads you, have firm faith and conviction, that He led you there. You will be happy to not condemn yourself when you stand firm in this faith.” Raymond Edman once said, “Never doubt in the dark what God told you in the light.” After all, Romans 8:1 tells us, “there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” I struggle with consistently second-guessing myself in actions and words. Before this revelation, I did not realize that this second-guessing is sin. Because, if I am walking in the Spirit on a daily basis, (Romans 8:4-5) I must believe that my words and deeds are what God leads me to say and do. To doubt His leading is sin: “But he who doubts is condemned if he waivers in convictions because his wavering is not from faith: and whatever is not from faith is SIN,” Romans 14:23. I am not referring to times when I know I am not walking according to the Spirit but rather the flesh. When walking according to the flesh, mouth and actions will yield sinful flesh. Of this, I must repent to both God and those I have offended. However, if I am daily offering my body as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1) and hourly, minute by minute walking in the Spirit, replaying and constantly analyzing the past is a trap from the devil. They are simply opportunities for me to doubt my convictions and leading from the Lord. When I find myself being lured into the trap, I need to set my mind on true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, excellent and praiseworthy things (Philippians 4:8). I need to stop, and say “Jesus,” to choose to quote scripture. This is my putting on the full armor of God so I can take my stand against the devil’s schemes. The mind is a battlefield, but with God’s armor, we are more than victorious! (Romans 8:37)

1.       Teachable moments
2.       Tylenol
3.       Sprinklers
4.       Water balloons
5.       Doctors & walk-in clinics
6.       Two-hour sit of the boisterous one
7.       Finger smudges on the wall
8.       Being still
9.       Kind pediatrician
10.   Warm and inviting medical clinic
11.   Kind affirmations from father-in-law & mother-in-law
12.   Wind to blow away tree worms
13.   Table Saw
14.   Excitement about homework
15.   Sweet strawberries at $1.19/#
16.   Eager hands to pack groceries
17.   Perseverance of the calculating one
18.   Three golden heads speaking all at once, excited to see daddy
19.   Judy Moody…
20.   The compassionate one up in the middle of the night with sister’s bad dream
21.   The compassionate one praying when I’m clean out of compassion
22.   Teaching the golden heads
23.   Teachable spirits
24.   Zumba
25.   Golden heads helping dad build
26.   Saving for a Hello Kitty camera
27.   Safety through the storm
28.   Documentaries
29.   Working alongside the compassionate one
30.   Daddy treating the golden heads to a movie
31.   Ruined appetites from popcorn & milk duds
32.   Wonder of finding the lost thought gone
33.   Diamonds to pass down to a golden head
34.   Fragrance of washed hair
35.   Playing teacher with the golden heads
36.   Thank you notes 
37.   Invitation to God’s kingdom
38.   Gift of righteousness given after saving faith
39.   Being the object of God’s love
40.   Being a chosen child of God
41.   Pillow talk with Derrick
42.   A dream shared
43.   A struggle shared
44.   Edification from the engineer
45.   Leadership of the engineer
46.   Quicken
47.   Budget meetings
48.   Opportunity to tithe
49.   Condensation on window panes
50.   Worms wriggling across path
51.   The engineer memorizing Colossians
52.   The boisterous one falling asleep without sucking
53.   Pink casts
54.   Gifts that brighten the face when you have a broken arm
55.   Two blonde toddler heads in the stroller
56.   Friends at the park
57.   Walk with a friend
58.   “”Shoot, shoot, shoot,” says the boisterous one
59.   Coffee with a friend in the sunroom
60.   Grandma in heaven, perfection
61.   Time to rebuild connections with family
62.   Leaving a Lois Legacy
63.   Peace during mourning
64.   Legacy of grandma
65.   Cousins playing in the rain
66.   Basement room at visitation for cousins to play in
67.   Priceless memories of staying with mom & dad while waiting to buy a home
68.   Mom sharing health issue with me
69.   All ten siblings and mom and dad around the table for pizza at home
70.   Coffee with Derrick on the deck
71.   Inspiring cousins raising Shaedyn with downs
72.   Micah’s smile
73.   Heart-bearing talk with Traci
74.   Thirty-minute drive to Beaver Creek
75.   Memories shared of grandma
76.   Cousins playing a “game”
77.   Daniel servant-leading the cousins
78.   Derrick quietly supporting my grief
79.   Ten grandkids singing “Jesus Loves Me”
80.   Aliya sleeping through the funeral
81.   Grace of God and family to pull Grandpa through
82.   Grandma’s faith example leading grandpa to faith
83.   No outbursts with Jess
84.   Dar making it through “Consider the Lilies”
85.   Grace sufficient in weakness
86.   All grandkids and great-grands at the funeral
87.   Cousins to play with
88.   Hospitality shared
89.   Serving mom and dad a steak dinner
90.   First campfire smoke of the year
91.   Toasted outside of marshmallow
92.   Spongy, soft, sweet angel food
93.   Servant mother-in-law
94.   Knowing Pipestone is home
95.   Serving mom a meal
96.   Lucas’ gift of hospitality
97.   Beautiful hymnal chords and harmonizing
98.   Desire to be a better person

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