Welcome! In my devotion today on “Genuine Faith,” I explain that a growing passion for God leads to an unwavering, genuine faith. It’s a simple life in Christ. Genuine faith is about believing God and trusting in His promises. It’s not about a long list of performances to gain His attention or the approval of others. No. Genuine Faith is about living a spirit filled life. This life is real. It’s not a made up life. It’s the life we’re looking for and God longs to give us. If you decided to partner with God today and commit to your role, then here’s the benefit:
• an increasing desire to know the Lord on an intimate basis.
• a desire to obey God that supersedes the need to fulfill personal desires.
• you’ll be moved to confess the moment we become aware of sin.
• a growing passion to live for Christ.
• a loving acceptance for God’s desired plan for our lives.
And life marked with peace, power, and purpose.
To maintain genuine faith and a passion for God we must heed our relationship responsibilities. They are:
First: We stay connected by staying committed: So often our faith becomes stale and passionless because we’ve lost our commitment. We lose our commitment because we lose that loving feeling for God. David didn’t lose that loving feeling. Listen to his heart in Ps 63:1
“O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” That comes from a passionate and committed heart.
Do you remember signing in church, “I have decided to follow Jesus no turning back no turning back. We do great on the decision to follow Jesus, but most of us turn back just like some of the disciples did when things got too tough. But genuine faith is a committed faith. It decides no matter what…I belong to Christ and I won’t turn back.
Secondly, we must confess sin daily. Christ doesn’t expose sin in our lives to cause us undue pain, but to restore fellowship with God. When there is something between us and God it has to be dealt with. If not, that’s when prayer seems to go unheard, when we lose understanding of spiritual things and our own desires take over. When our fellowship with God is broken by sin, it’s no different than when fellowship is broken with our spouse, or child, or friend.
For example: say you have a argument with your husband because he’s done something that really upset you. Even though you decided to let him live, you’re angry. Immediately you feel separated. Your relationship hasn’t changed. You are still his wife and he is still your husband but your fellowship is broken until there has been reconciliation—until someone says, “I’m sorry.” The same is true with our relationship with God. When you and I sin, we are still God’s child but our relationship needs mending.
1 Peter 2:1-3, “So clean house! Make a clean sweep of malice and pretense, envy and hurtful talk. You’ve had a taste of God. Now, like infants at the breast, drink deep of God’s pure kindness. Then you’ll grow up mature and whole in God.”
Each phrase of this motivates me. To have a genuine faith, I need to examine myself for symptoms of malice, pretense, envy, and hurtful talk. I need to stay close to God in order to grow in my faith and to stay connected the Spirit of God so he can work in and through me.
Thirdly, You and I must talk with God through prayer. We were created by God for God. That’s why we exist–to have an ongoing personal relationship with God where we allow him to guide our lives and set our priorities. He wants to guide us in everything…what career we choose and whom we marry. Now, you’re not going to find your future spouses name in the bible, but if you take time to know god and his ways, you will discover what to look for in a godly mate.
Because we are so busy, we fail to make time for God. That’s a problem. If we were made to fellowship with God and we don’t take the time to so, our lives suddenly become off balanced, stressful, and downright unpleasant. It doesn’t have to be that way. Jesus shows us how we can have a balanced, peaceful life.
Take time to read Mark 1:21-35 today. You’ll discover that Jesus’ day was not much different than our day. As he went about his job teaching, he was often met with distractions—some bad and some where divine appointments. He felt the pressure of the crowds. He knew what it was like to have people depending on Him just like those who are counting on us. So, how did Jesus know which interruptions were distractions and which ones were divine? How did Christ handle all that responsibility, stress and strain without losing it? He got away with God and prepared himself for whatever the day brought.
Finally, you and I must live a surrendered life: You may be wondering…isn’t that what I did when I first came to Christ…surrender? Yes, but that was only the beginning of a lifetime of surrender. Once we have surrendered our lives to Christ as Savior and Lord, we must now learn what it means to live out a surrendered life—to continually say no to self and yes to God.” Daily yielding your life to Christ is the secret to having a powerful, victorious Christian life.
There is more to receive from Christ than forgiveness of sin and ticket to heaven. He wants to give us life-His life. That happens when we decide to nail ours to the cross with all our rights, attitudes, pain, fears…you fill in the blank.
Each morning, I use Gal 2:20 as a guide. I claim, “I have been crucified with Christ. I no longer live but Christ lives in me and the life I live now I live by faith in Him who died for me.” When we do that—abandon ourselves then, Christ is free to occupy all. What’s the result? It’s the life you desire and Christ’s longs to give you. It’s a simple life of genuine faith in God alone.
For more encouragement on developing genuine faith, pick up a copy of my new book, “An Untroubled Heart…Finding A Faith Stronger Than All My Fear.”