Monday, August 29, 2011

Faith That Stops the Sun

"Of course every believer in Jesus has a measure of faith - it's the prerequisite of salvation. But after that, if we're honest, we think of faith primarily in terms of spiritual thought or comfortable feeling. We hope it's enough to get us into heaven when we die. But in the meantime, it's barely enough to keep us praying, giving, and going to the eleven o'clock service." These words come from Steven Furtick's book Sun Stand Still. A book written to activate audacious faith, to inspire believers to ask God for the impossible, and in the process, to reconnect believers with their God-sized purpose and potential. Don't be thrown off by the last part. The book is not about living your best life now, but instead about unleashing the greatness and potential that already exists in us because of the unlimited greatness of God that is in us.

I first heard Steven Furtick at the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit. I think what appealed to me most about his preaching style was how relevant he was, yet totally solid (again, if you want to check out divinely inspired, relevant sermons, check out Elevation Church). So I borrowed this book from my dad's vast library (thanks dad!) and started reading.

This book is based on a prayer in Joshua 10 that affected time and space (only God can do that!). Since the book is about believing God for the impossible, the foundation of its message is faith. You can't please God without it (Hebrews 11:6). You can't be saved apart from it (Ephesians 2:8). But way too many Christians have a distorted view of it. "If you're not daring to believe God for the impossible, you're sleeping through some of the best parts of your Christian life" (Steven Furtick). Ouch, that hurts me a little. I do not want to sleep through any part of my life, let alone the best parts.

Ok are you inspired yet? No? Well, keep reading anyway!

Hebrews 11 is known as the Hall of Fame of Faith. Here the author is calling believers of every generation to faithful endurance by use of testimonies from the lives of ancient saints. The author is challenging the audience to live lives of faith, according to the pattern of great heroes of faith. Now these great heroes were not just thinking about their faith, but instead were so inspired that they acted on their faith. These heroes were visionaries, not just daydreamers. What's the difference? The difference between a visionary and a daydreamer is the audacity and faith to actually act and get started. Faith believes it before it sees it and then acts - because faith without deeds is dead (James 2:26). Amen.

There's a story told of two farmers who prayed to God for rain, but only one went out to prepare his field to receive it. Now which farmer had more faith? (BTW this is not rhetorical, but um no comments on the answer...It's meant to be reflective :))

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