Now glory be to God!
By his mighty power at work within us,
he is able to accomplish infinitely more
than we would ever dare to ask or hope.

Ephesians 3:20

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Growing Our Faith

I want to ask you a question.  You can answer in the comments or by email if you want.  Or you can just think about it.  It's an important question that I believe we all need spend a little time thinking about.   We only get one go-round at this thing called life.  And time seems to be flying by, wouldn't you agree?  My kids have been home almost three years.  I met them five years ago.  Time.  Flies.

Okay here is the question:

When is the last time you stepped outside of your comfort zone?  In any area?  Our comfort zone is that space we create with structure and routines, you know, predictable, safe.  We all have a comfort zone.  It is that place where life is mostly easy, or at least predictable.  Some would call it boring.  Others would call it security.  It is where we are, well, comfortable.

Growth happens when we stretch outside our comfort zone.  Thinking about it in a physical sense, if you want to build stronger muscles, what do you do?  You work the ones you have until the point of exhaustion-the point of "I can't do one more rep."  It's break down to build up, better and stronger. The same holds true for our emotional and spiritual lives, our relationships, our careers, basically every aspect of our lives.

If you want to have a bigger / stronger faith-you have to take a leap.  Think about it-how much faith do you need when everything is just peachy?  In those seasons of relative ease, when things just seem to come together and come easily.  Or when you work and plan and strive for your goals and are making progress on your own efforts, what do you need faith in God for?   Our human nature has a tendency to say "Look at what I did."  Or "look at me."  (pride) And that draws our attention away from God and onto ourselves.  Dangerous territory there, trust me, I speak from experience.

Make a move that looks impossible and your faith will grow in the process.  Does that mean it will all turn out the way we plan or hope?  No.  Does it mean it will be easy?  Almost definitely not.  Does it mean we will grow in our faith as we see God move?  Absolutely. If you want to grow your faith you have got to take a chance once in a while.  This creates the space for God to work.  So often, in my own life, I have prayed and prayed and prayed, mostly for clarity "what do I do God?"  "show me which way to go, God."  I have prayed for clarity so long that when I finally took an action step, any step at all, in the direction I thought or hoped God was leading, it was almost as if I could hear Him say "That's all I was waiting for." And the speed and ease with which the clarity came after I took some action was mind-blowing.  Perhaps God is waiting on you to take some small step today.   Or maybe it's time for a big leap.  I don't know.  That's between you and God.  But let me ask you again,when is the last time you took a risk, any risk?

  • Smiled at a stranger.
  • Wore a brighter color than usual.
  • Served another person.
  • Wore a scarf.  Or a hat.  Or a bathing suit.
  • Set a goal (physical, financial, career, spiritual)
  • Dressed up (or dressed down)
  • Drove a different way to work, school, church.
  • Volunteered to help with a project you didn't know much about.
  • Spoke a kind word to someone.
  • Held the door open for the person coming in behind you.
  • Said "I love you." 
  • Asked someone "How are you?" then stopped/slowed down enough to really listen.
  • Jumped off a cliff, bridge or airplane.
  • Felt God prompting you to do something and you did it.
  • Or?????

What happened when you took that risk?  I'd love to hear your stories and what you're learning about trusting God. 

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