The Bible gives this definition of faith:
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
When our middle daughter was six, all three girls took swimming lessons. The oldest and the youngest caught on right away, but the middle girl’s fear of the water stalled her learning, and she gave up.
My visual of faith came one evening on a vacation. Tired and hungry, we stopped at a motel for the evening. The girls clamored for one with a pool. After dinner, that pool was the first place we headed.
Near the six foot spot, my husband held to the side and called out to Christie, our middle girl, “Jump in.” He stretched our his arms to her. My visual of faith will always be that daughter jumping into her dad’s arms. Why? She still didn’t know how to swim. Her fear of water was strong. Until then, she hadn’t ventured away from the steps in the three foot area. But she jumped because her dad said come, and she trusted her dad.
My best definition of faith is putting ourselves into a place where Our Heavenly Father has to take care of us, or accomplish His purpose in us.
Last week, I completed a study of the “Armor of God” by Priscilla Shirer. I loved the detail in the study about each part of the armor, but I especially liked learning more about the “shield of faith.”
Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
A shield carried by a Roman soldier was 2’ wide and 4’ long, big enough for him to hide behind. When an enemy army would throw fiery javelins, the Romans covered themselves with their shields, blocking the weapons and the fire from harming them. Then, they advanced.
Fear is the fiery javelin of the devil.
The shield of faith doesn’t stop the fear, but it protects us while we act. We prove our faith with our works.
If our daughter had stood on the side of the pool and said she knew her dad would catch her, but she didn’t jump in, how could her trust be proven?
When God asked me to call a woman who had said ugly things about us and tell her I was praying for her, I was scared, but I did it. I love the idea that when I acted, the big shield of faith was covering and protecting me.
“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
“Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.
Matthew 14: 28-30
Peter was still afraid. Walking on the water was more than he could do within his own power, but he trusted Jesus. Though he faltered, Peter managed to do something no other human has done except the God/man Jesus.
When our daughter jumped into her dad’s arms, the water felt cool and refreshing. She splashed and had fun like her sisters.
What is God asking you to do that scares you?
With me, it’s learning once again something on the internet. I’m very tech-challenged. Change makes me anxious and fearful.
We must put on our shield of faith to protect us from the fear and then act. Chances are the Lord has a blessing waiting for us.
“Faith does not concern itself with the entire journey. One step is enough.”
-Mrs. Charles E. Cowman