I was so upset one day after a phone call from someone I dearly loved. I was not happy with the situation I thought they were allowing…I wanted them to do something different, but I knew I couldn’t tell them that . . . I’d already done that a few times. . . and it didn’t work. So I went for a walk on the beach. It was a gorgeous day with blue skies and glitters on the aqua blue waves. The air was warm. People were walking and swimming and playing. . .a beautiful day. I took in the beauty, but inside I cried out to God. “Lord, I need to hear from you on this. I need your perspective. I don’t want it to go this way. I want to fix it. I want to shake someone so they see it correctly.” I was looking up and there may have been tears in my eyes. When I finished my little rant, I glanced to my side. There on a bench about 20 feet away sat a man with a black t-shirt on. In huge white letters his t-shirt said, “Stay Calm and Walk On.” At first, I did not want to acknowledge that God was answering me like that. But He was.
Faith needs Hope. Without hope, there is no foothold for faith, no path to walk on. The Bible tells us that faith is the substance of things hoped for, so hope needs to be present. You have a desire, a need, a dream and you hope for a fulfillment, an answer to your desire. If you spend time in the Bible, known as the Word of God (what He says), you’ll find all kinds of promises, and more often than not, there will be a promise for what you want or need. So, you want it, God promises it, and now you build on that with faith. You believe and trust that you will get the answer, the need met, the desire fulfilled.
Faith works by Love. Faith doesn’t stand alone when you are believing and trusting. It travels down a two-way street of love. One direction is knowing that God loves you and wants the best for you, and the other direction is loving Him and the people He has set around you. 1 Corinthians 13 in the Bible holds amazing truths about love. We can have all kinds of faith, but faith is nothing without love. That chapter in the Bible tells us love isn’t rude, but is kind. It doesn’t rejoice in evil but in truth. Love isn’t resentful and touchy. Helping others in faith, hope, and love will open doors for you.
Faith without Works is dead. The Greek word for work is ergon, meaning toil, effort, labor. Sometimes we want to believe God for what we need and never do a thing…just sit back and wait. There is a certain truth to that…it’s called resting in the Lord, letting go, not trusting in our own efforts. However, there is a toil, an effort, a labor to standing firm in your trust, in obeying God in those little and big things He may nudge you to do. It is a bit of a dichotomy, but you let go of your own way of doing things, put your situation in God’s hands, and then speak and act as if it’s done, staying vigilant to hear and obey what He wants you to do.
So now what do I do about the situation that so upset me. I have to walk in faith. I have asked God to lead me to promises and verses that lay a foundation of hope. On those I build my faith and trust God to fulfill those promises. I stay calm in faith and make a continuing effort to walk in love, knowing God loves those involved more than I ever could, and He can guide them. And then my work, my ongoing effort is to pray for His will to be fulfilled, to trust and believe and to speak the promises in faith, knowing God will bring them to pass. And if He nudges me to say something, do something, I will obey.