April 26, 2012 by Pastor Jeremiah
I’ve been contemplating what it means to live a life of “faith” this week. As our church has been working through the book of Hebrews, we’ve landed on chapter 11, or as it has commonly been referred to, “the faith chapter”. The chapter begins with a definition of what faith is followed by a list of real life examples. Men and women such as: Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Rahab, etc. These, the writer tells us, were commended for their faith.
I’m challenged by the stories of people like Abraham, Noah, Rahab. Each of them had to take what I would consider a “leap of faith” into the unknown. Abraham left his country, his people, everything he had ever known to follow God on a journey that never ended. He was a sojourner until the day he died. Noah faced the daily ridicule of those who believed that his life’s project (building an ark) was a colossal waste of time. Not to mention those who were convinced that he was out of his mind crazy! Rahab hid the Israelite spies because God had told her that He was the one true God and He was with Israel. She risked her life aiding and hiding these spies on a hunch. I’ve been asking myself the question, “where is God calling me to take a leap into the unknown and I lack the courage to jump?”
On the other hand, I’m encouraged that these same giants of our faith have been rather unimpressive in other instances. Abraham and Sarah struggled greatly to believe that God would provide them a son. They jumped the gun and took on Hagar as a surrogate mother creating all sorts of strife in the process. Noah apparently struggled with sobriety. He got so drunk one night that he passed out naked in his tent. To make matters worse one of his sons made a mockery of him creating a division amongst brothers that lasted for generations and probably still exists today. Rahab was a prostitute. She was also listed in the genealogy of Jesus Christ, which brings us a beautiful revelation of just how big the heart of our God really is. He redeems our struggles and weaves them into his redemptive story.
Be confident in this: If God has begun a good work in you, He will carry it to completion.