Saturday, March 29, 2008

faith keeps us going and going

I'm reminded of the Energizer Bunny now, with the statment, "Faith keeps us going and going." But this is actually true for us in Jesus. What keeps us going when so much seems to be against us, and we seem ourselves to be stuck in some quagmire of life, for a variety of possible reasons? Faith. Faith in God through Christ and in God's promises to us from Scripture, in Christ.

Faith means we're not going to give up and give in to anything less than God's will for us in Jesus. Faith means we're going to keep praying, even when we feel prayerless or defeated. Faith is ongoing, and is not dependent on anything except the willingness to be led by God and follow.

And we're in this together. This is important. We're not islands to ourselves. We're one Body in Christ, each having our role and work to fulfill as part of that one Body, by the Spirit.

So whatever you and I are facing today, let's not give up. Let's look to God in faith both for ourselves and for each other. And for the work of God's kingdom in Jesus to come to others, as well.

And as we continue in this faith, we'll find that we can in Jesus keep going and going in God's good will for us. No matter what the difficulties are. The Lord will see us, and others through, as we trust in him, however imperfectly, through everything.

What might you add to this?

9 comments:

NaNcY said...

thanks for the reply to my comment. i sometimes get distracted at my imperfections and those of others when it comes to living as a believer in Christ and i become dismayed and disillusion can set in and i become even more in need of grace. i do need to remember that all is given in grace to me and keep the faith. your words are very encouraging.

and to remember to pray about these things in light of myself and not others.

NaNcY said...

i did an edit to my post.
thank you.

sacred vapor said...

I agree with you Ted. I suppose more frequently than the energizer bunny I need to be re-charged. I guess that's where the Holy Spirit comes in.

The Walk said...

Good post. And I think the re-charging idea is an interesting one, too. Scripture, prayer, community...they re-charge our souls. And when one of those things is lacking, I feel drained, and I'm more likely to become distant from God. I know, for me, I'm most likely to starve myself of community.

Every Square Inch said...

We need to be continually filled with the Spirit, don't we?

Ted M. Gossard said...

Nancy,
Yes, discouragement over ourselves and others is a big culprit in sidetracking us.

The hope is never in ourselves or in each other, but in the Lord. But because of that hope, there is all the hope in the world for ourselves and for each other, no matter what!

Thanks!

Ted M. Gossard said...

Sacred Vapor,
Yes, I agree. We need the Spirit, to walk in the Spirit and be filled with the Spirit.

The Spirit's work in our lives; yes, that's a big one, and not that well understood by us.

I like Gordon Fee's work on the Spirit in the writings of Paul We need more good exegetical work along that line. And above all, we need more of the Spirit's work in our lives, individually and corporately, I believe.

Thanks.

Ted M. Gossard said...

The Walk,
Thanks, and I agree with everything you say here, right down to the details, even though I like community, but easily can be distracted from it. But that can be a sign of somehow missing the boat, somewhere in my life.

That reminds me of 1 John 1 where it says, "if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son, continually cleanses us of all sin." But faith does seem sometimes to be exercised in darkness. Though never the darkness of sin, as the context in 1 John 1 is talking about. Another kind of experiential darkness, I guess, or something we can't get our hands on- I guess that's why it's dark.

That also reminds me of the passage in Isaiah, which suggests that God's servant will encounter darkness, but in that is to walk by faith, trusting in the Lord.

Ted M. Gossard said...

"Be being filled with the Spirit" is I believe a literal rendering of Ephesians 5:18. D.L. Moody, I think it was, used to say, we ever need the filling of the Spirit because we're leaky vessels. Of course what flows in is meant to flow out, as Jesus said in John 7 of those who believe in him, Out of their innermost being, will flow rivers of living water- meaning the Spirit, as it states there.

It is interesting in the Acts, at the same time, how we read of Peter being filled with the Holy Spirit at a certain point in time, along with others. I do think it's scriptural to say that the Spirit does give special fillings at certain points, for special situations.

I also think this is in harmony with Jesus' promise in Luke 11 (verse 13, I think), where we read of the promise that the Father will give the Holy Spirit ("how much more so will the Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.") to those who ask for the Spirit. I think this is ongoing, not just at Pentecost. And that it is perfectly alright and good to pray to God in the words, "Come, Holy Spirit." Not the set, ordinary way of praying, but the Spirit is God, and the Lord is the Spirit, as we read from Scripture, and as we know in the truth of the Trinity.

My thoughts on it, anyhow.

Thanks.