Walking by faith or by sight?

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From 12-2-09 Journal entry

Quote from “Wild Goose Chase” by Mark Batterson. “Most of us want God to provide miraculous signs before we come out of the cage. We want God to part the river before we get our feet wet. Why? So our faith doesn’t require any faith. Sometimes God will provide a miraculous sign that will give you just enough faith to take the first step, but more often than not, faith doesn’t follow signs. Signs follow faith.”

I love it when I read something or hear something that stops me in my tracks; begs for my attention, time, meditation and prayer. I get very excited when I read something inspired like this quote and give thanks to God for every author He has brought across my path.

These are the kinds of writings and stirrings I wish the workers of today had liberty to read. They are very limited and ill equipped for their job. And, they are starving spiritually. Year after year they plod along with only their KJV Bibles, their concordances, hymnbooks and convention notes. Am I saying the Bible isn’t enough? No, that’s not what I’m saying! But let in what other people outside of the fellowship have gleaned from it instead of clinging to a few sentences of ‘bread’ from a four day convention when there should be enough to fill a whole book. Instead of listening to the same ole, same ole with seldom anything new being shared. Ask, “What is wrong with this picture?” It’s OK to ask and seek and knock!

Obviously, not every worker has the gift of teaching or preaching but every worker had to preach, often much to the dismay of the listeners! Why not let them instead minister in their gifts at convention? Can you imagine how cool convention could have been if that were to happen? Some serving in one area, some in another. Some ministering to a particular age group or to a specific need. Small groups meeting together all over the grounds. People praying together everywhere. Coming together as a whole group only once a day perhaps and the rest of the time meeting in smaller groups doing everything from playing basketball; talking about better ways to use your quiet time; working on your marriage or getting godly counsel on how to raise your kids. Totally ordered and structured and still very spiritual and all for the purpose of worshiping God, edifying one another and building each other up in Christ Jesus. I’ve been to women’s retreats that have been formatted like this and have come away every time refreshed, inspired and closer to God and there wasn’t a single preacher there!

Ok…back to the quote! Are we living in such a way that our faith doesn’t require any faith? I knew as a worker that I would be taken care of by the friends. It didn’t feel like living by faith anymore because everything was so predictable.

It did require faith for me to believe that God would come through every week and give me something to share in meeting. And it did take faith to believe that there was some purpose to what we were doing year after year.

Now, however, I wonder if the energy spent in this kind of living by faith and not by sight were but a very small foretaste of what Jesus really meant by “go in faith.” Our vision was so small and our focus so limited; we weren’t seeing much of the entire bigger picture. If we had, we would have been the most spiritually alive and excited bunch of people around. We would be seeing signs and following faith everywhere. This would not have been just the experience of the workers but also the friends.

For me, it took more faith to leave the Work than to stay.
To leave the meetings rather than stay.
To let God do the things I am totally incapable of doing on my own.

Another quote of Wild Goose Chase:

Signs follow decisions. The way you overcome spiritual inertia and produce spiritual momentum is by making tough decisions. And the tougher the decision, the more potential momentum it will produce. The primary reason most of us don’t see God moving is simply because we aren’t moving. If you want to see God move, you need to make a move.”

When was the last time you took a baby step of faith or a leap of faith?


8 thoughts on “Walking by faith or by sight?

  1. Walking by faith and not by what we see or what we feel! because when God asks us to do something we have to believe that His Word is true and that provision is already made for the future! I have been guilty of wavering in the storm, but glad for GOD’s reassurance that when I obey HIS WORD, HE will take care of the consequences


  2. I know that this is a little off topic, but I have been reading John MacArthur’s commentary on Colosians and came across a comment he made about 3:3; “For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” He says; “In what sense has the believer died? In the sense that the penalty for sin has been paid. By union with Jesus Christ, we die the required death in Him, thus the penalty is paid and sin can never claim us again. We have thus died to sin in the sense of paying its penalty. Its presence and power still affect us—but it cannot condemn us!

    This is not believed in the fellowship. It is as though you can slip on a banana peel at any moment and lose your salvation because of disobedience and/or sin. What a comfort to know that while sin is with us and we will struggle against it all our days, it cannot condemn us and, thereby, separate us from God. Our reconciliation to God through Christ is complete and iron clad because God’s grace is greater than any sin! We most certainly DO NOT take sin lightly and we feel such regret at sinning against God. This regret is not because we feel that we can lose our salvation, but because we have disappointed the one we so deeply love.

    I have been trying to articulate to family and friends in the fellowship why we are now confident in our salvation. It hasn’t seem to really help to talk about the fact that salvation is a gift that can never be earned or repaid. I will report back as to whether this helps.


  3. My wife and I enjoy your blog! It is amazing to read God’s word after our scales have been removed! When my wife, two daughters and I were lead out by God in 1999, Max Lucado was a wonderful resource, and I saw Dale Spencer in a Family Christian store looking at a book of sermons, as I researched other Max Lucado books. (Some workers have access to other christian thinking…just wish they all had revelation!)
    It is amazing to receive wisdom from God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, and as we read Mark 16:15-18 today, nothing has changed, but EVERYTHING just keeps getting better spiritually!


  4. This is a great post. I have been learning a lot about faith the last 4 years. I still have so much to learn. Thank you!


  5. Extraordinarily insightful quotes from the book.
    Good question to end your piece with… We all need to ponder this!
    Thank you!


  6. Thanks for a great entry Darla! Along the line of faith, I came across a quote from Jim Elliot (missionary that was killed along with 4 other missionaires while working with the Auca indigenious people in Ecuador) about faith: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose”.


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