Living by Faith-Part 4

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Acting on our faith is the true test.

That is the moment when we move from doubt to faith.

You can’t have faith without action.

The last three in this Faith series walked us through the steps of faith. First, we ask, then we believe, then doubt seems to always come next. But, we get to make a decision to continue in doubt or cross the bridge into action. Just as a runner must pick up one foot and take the first step so is the first step to action toward faith. You don’t know until you try.

Rom 8:6 Now the mind of the flesh [which is sense and reason without the Holy Spirit] is death [death that  comprises all the miseries arising from sin, both here and hereafter]. But the mind of the [Holy] Spirit is life and [soul] peace [both now and forever].

 

We have a choice to walk by the flesh (our own sense and reason that can be faulty and emotions that can be affected easily) or walk by the Spirit (God’s wisdom and statutes). That choice is what leads us from doubt to faith. God said “my ways are higher than your ways”. We cannot begin to understand life and all that is in it to the extent that God does. Our finite minds only  comprehend in part. The world’s wisdom is many times contrary to God’s knowledge and wisdom. God’s logic may not always make sense but he made everything and set the laws of the universe in motion. He can do whatever He wants. I would rather follow Him and His ways.

How to Act in Faith

1. What we say is important.

Faith can be shut down by what we say. Our speech has to line up with what we believe or what we really believe will come out.

2 Cor 4:13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak,

What do you really believe? It is evidenced in your words. What do you speak?

“I can never get ahead, something always happens”

“Murphys law, story of my life”

” If I were better I could”

“I can’t do that”

Griping, complaining,and talking negative nullifies our faith. It squashes  it. Have you ever heard someone talk about a situation in their life and how they are believing for a miracle and then in the very next sentence complain, gripe and or even blame someone or themselves?

Disciplining your tongue is the first step in taking action and walking in faith.  What we say can cage us or set us free.

2. Speak what God says

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Power comes from God’s word because His word is spoken power and authority.

Find scriptures that speak to your circumstance and pray it and declare it.

3. What you say will determine what you do

Luke 6:45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.

I have heard people refer to the power of confession. What you continually profess will affect your actions, your thoughts and eventually where you go.

4. The tongue directs where you go

This list is pretty simple. It’s all about the tongue. Discipline your mouth and speak what God says and you are already walking in faith and in power.

As humans we don’t understand faith. I believe God knows that and gave us a practical guide to follow called the Bible. It is very clear and the wisdom is meant for us to study and use as our weapon in life to overcome things that weight us down, bind us or weaken us.

Heavenly Father, thank you for your Word that is power and has all authority to break things that bind us, to loose power in our lives and to set us free. Thank you that you meet every need. Show us your wisdom. Lead us by your Spirit. Teach us your ways. Give us strength and wisdom to discipline our tongue. Amen.

 *adapted from Pastor Shane Warren from First Assembly of God, West Monroe, LA

You can get his entire series on faith from his website I highly recommend it.

http://firstassemblywm.org/author/pastorshane/

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Serial Killer

One morning while reading Matthew 19:16-22, trying catch up on the YouVersion 90 day Bible reading plan, I had an encounter…

The Rich Young Ruler

16And someone came to Him and said, “Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?” 17And He said to him, “Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good; but if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” 18Then he said to Him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT MURDER; YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY; YOU SHALL NOT STEAL; YOU SHALL NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS; 19HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER; and YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” 20The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept; what am I still lacking?” 21Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” 22But when the young man heard this statement, he went away grieving; for he was one who owned much property.http://biblebrowser.com/matthew/19-1.htm

I quickly ran through the commandments in my head. I thought: “I don’t steal, or murder, I have lied but not in a long time, I honor my Father and Mother (I think). I have kept all the commandments…”

But Holy Spirit spoke to me so softly but clearly: “You do commit murder”.

“How?”

“With your words”

I believe at that point the Lord began to open my eyes to all the ways I murder, abort, and destroy (spriritually speaking) with my words. I have wounded the spirit of my children, my husband, friends, myself…carelessly speaking words without realizing the effects. I have aborted  dreams and miracles through faithless and harmful words.

Do we realize the “Power” in words?

 Proverbs 18:21 (AMP)Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it [for death or life].

How do we read this scripture and not take it at face value? God has given us the choice of life or death. What do you choose with your words?

Deuteronomy 30:19 (KJV) I call   heaven  and earth  to record   this day  against you, that I have set before  you life  and death,  blessing  and cursing:  therefore choose life,  that both thou and thy seed  may live.

Q: Who do I kill with my words?

Proverbs 12:13-1413 The wicked is [dangerously] snared by the transgression of his lips, but the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall come out of trouble.14 From the fruit of his words a man shall be satisfied with good, and the work of a man’s hands shall come back to him [as a harvest].

A: Yourself and Others

Proverbs 12:18 There are those who speak rashly, like the piercing of a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

Proverbs 13:2-3 (AMP) A good man eats good from the fruit of his mouth, but the desire of the treacherous is for violence. v 3 He who guards his mouth keeps his life, but he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.Proverbs 16:24 (AMP) Pleasant words are as a honeycomb, sweet to the mind and healing to the body.

You can bring wholeness and healing to yourself and others by your words.

Q: How do I wound with my words?

Proverbs 15:4,7 (AMP) A gentle tongue [with its healing power] is a tree of life, but willful contrariness in it breaks down the spirit. 7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge [sifting it as chaff from the grain]; not so the minds and hearts of the self-confident and foolish.

Break it down:

A wholesome  (brings healing, refreshing, deliverance, remedy)

tongue [is] (organ of speech)

a tree of life : but perverseness (crookedness)

therein [is] a breach (wounds of the spirit, destruction, terror from the mind being broken)

in the spirit (as the seat of the senses, affections, and emotions).

A: Contrariness.

I can tell you plenty of times how my “willful contrariness” has not helped a situation. I didn’t realize that it also hurt the other person and myself.

Proverbs 15:1-2 (AMP) A soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger.2 The tongue of the wise utters knowledge rightly, but the mouth of the [self-confident] fool pours out folly.

Q: How do I abort?

A: When our words display a deficit in the heart. With our lack of faith we cut short or nullify the things of God.

Luke 1:18-20 (NIV)18 Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.”19 The angel said to him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. 20 And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their appointed time.”

Why was Zechariah stricken so that he could not talk? This was a sign because of his unbelief. But also, I believe, it was so that through his words of doubt and unbelief he could not abort the work that God was about to do.

Think about times that you have spoken by lack of faith. What could God have done in your circumstance if you had spoken truth in faith?

I once listened to a speaker, Lisa Bevere. She told a story of how God taught her how HE needs our words. We struggle to understand the complicated association God ordained as communion between us and HIM.

God can use our words or the enemy can use them. The choice is yours.

How much power has God given us by use of words?

Should He trust us with words that can kill and destroy?

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