One of my favorite verses in Scripture is this-
King James Version (KJV)
11 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
As Christians the very basis of our entire belief system in Christ is faith based. I dare say that most of us haven't seen Christ, we haven't had coffee with Him, and we haven't had Him over for dinner. However, when we become a Christian and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit we are filled with the faith and knowledge that He is as present and as alive as any one of us. It's a knowing deep in your soul...unwavering and certain.
"Faith" and "hope" have long been two of my favorite words in the English language. The word "hope" became a cornerstone of my foundation during the years that my father was so very sick. I hoped each day that he would get better. I hoped each day that God would heal and fully restore him to perfect health. One Christmas in the midst of his illness my mother gave to me and my sister these beautiful, silver rings with the word "HOPE" etched in them in black letters. She asked us to wear those for him. I've not gone one day without wearing that ring since. Hope is a word which gives us promise and an expectation about the future and/or situations in our life. We can hope for a promotion. We can hope someone will be healed. We can hope to win the lottery. I realized in the midst of my love affair with the word "hope", however, that FAITH was an intregal part of the equation as well. Hope and faith must coexist in order for hope to reach its full potential. We can "hope" all day for something, but unless we truly have the FAITH that it is possible our hope is fruitless.
The Word is full of promises to us as God's children if we will only have faith in Him. He is our Maker, our Provider, our Strength, and our Savior. He wishes for us to have faith in Him fully to provide our needs and the desires of our hearts. Faith is what brings us into the Kingdom of Heaven. Faith moves mountains. Matthew 17:20 tells us that mountain moving is possible even in people who have faith just the size of a mustard seed.
Faith is the evidence in our lives for the world to see that we believe in a power greater than ourselves. We can't be wishy-washy in our belief. We either do or we don't. It's black or it's white. You either have faith or you don't. My hope for each of us is that we would continue to grow daily in our faith and in turn will see the rewards of our obedience. Have a wonderful weekend, friends. Grow in what you know. Feed your faith.