Yesterday concluded our Blue Note series.
Luke did an amazing job of summarizing the series, and of encouraging us all to have the faith that gets us through the blues.
Faith resolves the blues. Using the story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis, and the story of Ryan and Rachelle Watkins of Threshold, Luke wove together a tremendous illustration of faith.
What is faith? Faith is being certain that we can trust the promises of a powerful, personal God enough that we take appropriate action based on these promises, even though we may not always see immediate reward for our obedience.
Faith has four components…
1. PROMISE – to abraham, “you will be a mighty nation.” This promise was tested by the command to kill his only son; To Ryan and Rachelle the following promises (isaiah 40:31, 41:10, 43:1-3; josh 1:9; 2 cor 12:9; romans 8:28; philippians 4:19; psalm 23:6; and hebrews 13:5-6) were all tested by the news that it was a boy…
2. INNER REVOLUTION – Abraham’s trust in the promise caused him to move forward with the sacrifice; Ryan and Rachelle trusted that God would work all of this out…somehow. Faith, though, is always future-based and is always laced with ignorance because we are always called to trust the plans of an infinite, loving God.
3. EXTERNAL ACTION – Abraham took Isaac to the mountain, fully intending to sacrifice him, and fully intending to receive him back from the dead; Ryan and Rachelle prepared as if they would have a child, and trusted God. A 100 year old woman got a crib ready, and a grieving mother prepared to love her son.
4. REWARD – Both received their sons back from the dead; yet neither have received the full reward. One day Abraham will see all of his “kids” in heaven, and one day Rachelle will see her brother playing with her son, and Dani and Terry will see their son playing with their grandson… faith tells us this will happen, but until it does, we look foward to that reward.
Faith makes promises that God is in control, that he is always working in each life – ultimately for our good and his glory.
As you consider this mighty biblical truth, challenge yourself. Where are you having the most difficulty trusting God? What do you all but refuse to give over to him? Which of his promises do you need to lean more into? Pray about it. Find the places in your bible where those promises are. Ask your cellmates or trusted friends to pray with you. God so longs for your trust.