Sunday, December 23, 2012

Accessing the Spiritual Gift of Faith

When God decrees something the planets align, so to speak.
It is very difficult to achieve anything worthwhile in this life without faith. And faith requires the truth and a vision—the discernment of the present state and the desire for a future state:
“There shall be no interpreter to a sinful nation: but he that observes the law is blessed.”
—Proverbs 29:18 (Septuagint)
What this proverb, above, tells us is, without a vision of truth the people perish; without hope of a new land there is no need of faith to get there. Without vision we stagnate, nationally and personally.
Faith and vision, therefore, are interdependent concepts. A vision cannot be achieved without faith to get there. Likewise, without faith we cannot discern a vision and we struggle for hope.
If we have no hope, we, from the spiritual perspective, perish.
We can do a quick self-audit on whether we are living hopefully or not by asking ourselves: do we have a vision?
In other words, has our vehicle of faith got wheels beneath it? Has the vehicle the ability to roll? Does it have an engine, and, as importantly, will the engine and drive-train propel the vehicle—our faith—onward toward our vision?
A Most Important Prayer – for [a] Vision
Whether we desire a vision, or simply vision, is only personally relevant. We decide having first sought God’s input on the subject.
But it is a most important prayer—an ongoing type of prayer as we journey with God. If we have no vision we perhaps have no hope, and our faith freewheels in neutral.
The spiritual gift of faith, then, is quite contingent on having vision, or a vision, for what is essentially our call from God: the direction, purpose, and meaning of our lives.
If we ask God in our prayer time to give us a vision for what he wants us to do, he will most certainly give us the faith to realise our vision.
The Inertia of Faith
For faith to be faith it needs inertia; momentum is what defines the true basis of faith.
Faith, therefore, is inextricably linked to works—per James 2:14-26. When the vision inspires our faith it literally pushes us into action. We cannot stop it. And we wouldn’t want to stop it, for this is the purpose of our very lives.
When faith has inertia it has become faith. Before faith has inertia it is simply a vision; the projection of our potential for helping others against the theatre screen of life. So when we get moving on our vision we are expressing faith; and, as the Scripture says, we are pleasing God (Hebrews 11:6).
Faith requires us to act. But we cannot act unless we have a vision for what God wants us to do. Vision is hope which propels faith. When we have a vision, we have hope, and our faith becomes action. Then God is pleased. God wants us to have a vision of how we will help others.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.

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