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What is Faith?



Hebrews 11:1: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” 

 

My faith has been recently tested in the used car shopping process. My current vehicle died on me two weeks ago. Finances are tight because just the day before I got a new boiler installed at my home. I started the internal freakout about another big expense.

 

To converse about faith, one must first understand what faith is. According to Hebrews 11:1, faith comprises things desired (good things) and is exemplified in the unseen. An example of the unseen is the wind. You can see the effects of the wind like trees swaying. However, can we see where the wind begins or ends or watch it go past? We may see things carried along in the wind, but can we see the wind itself?

 

While writing this article, I had to question myself whether I had faith in God to provide for me in my car-shopping situation.

 

So, what does it mean to have faith? An excellent example of having faith would be sitting on a chair. Typically, someone just takes a seat without questioning the chair’s ability to do its job.

 

Comparing my inner dialogue to the sitting-in-the-chair example indicated that my faith needed to grow.

 

Transferring that ideal of faith from the chair example to faith in God requires more thought. I found the following three-step process helpful in this transfer. The first step involves stopping your thought processes to think about your thoughts. Romans 12:2 begins with: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (NKJV). This means taking charge of your mind is paramount. The second step is to test those thoughts: are you trusting God or depending on yourself or others? Proverbs 3:5-6 sums this up well: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths (NKJV). The final step is choosing what you will depend on/have faith in. Joshua 24: 15 ends with “as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”

 

Taking a step back from my car-shopping conundrum and questioning my faith in God showed me areas where I needed growth. It is not a once-and-done lesson. For me, it is a day-by-day (sometimes moment-by-moment) process of learning to lean more on God. I am happy to say my car shopping experience seems to be drawing to a close, and I have found a new car and learned to have faith in my God.


-Dr. Elissa Rogers (a contributing writer and member of the COBI community)

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