We are talking this week about how to release the potential for faith that Paul said was available to us in Romans 12:3. We all have the same potential to believe God, but how do we get that potential functioning in our daily living. Walking by faith and not by sight is a skill. It takes time and practice to master any skill. There are also elements that need to be mastered if we are going to master the whole skill. We used driving as an illustration. Most of us, when we first started driving, were uncomfortable behind the wheel. After a while driving became second nature to us. Practice and experience caused this transformation.
In the same way there are elements of walking by faith that we need to master if we are ever going to be proficient in the skill. It will take time and practice. The first element is found in the verse above. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. It doesn’t come from anywhere else. If we are going to walk by faith and not by sight, this must become a natural response in every situation where faith is required.
When we drive, one thing we need to know is how to fill the gas tank. We don’t wonder where to go to get gasoline. When the car is low on fuel we don’t go to the grocery store. We don’t wonder if we should go to the drug store. We simply know to go to the gas station. There is no thought given to it. We need to have the same natural response whenever we need faith. We go to the Word.
If I am facing a need in my life, my first response should be, “What promise will meet this situation?” We should go to the Bible before we go anywhere else. Sometimes we run everywhere but to the Word. There are certainly times when we need prayer or ministry, but the first thing we should think is, “Do I need more faith?” If the answer is yes, go to the word. If the car stops running the first thing to check is the gas gage. If we don’t feel the power of God in our lives, we need to check our “faith gage” first.
The other thing we do with our car, or at least should, is not wait until the tank is empty to refuel. I have failed to do that at times and it is usually uncomfortable. I remember when we couldn’t afford gas and we would put in just enough to get us to where we were going. If we were not near a gas station when we got to “E” it was always a nerve wracking experience to see how far we could get before we ran out. If we did run out, it was embarrassing and more than a little inconvenient. The smart thing to do is fill up before you start and when you get to a quarter tank, start looking for a station.
The same is true of the Word. Too often we wait for a crisis before we start to fill our tank. We rarely read the word. We don’t study regularly. We don’t meditate in the word. Then one day we find ourselves in a situation where we really need faith and we find that the tank is empty. Often it is too late at that point to fill it up. We need to keep the tank filled. We need to pray and study regularly so that when we face the challenges of life we do so with a full faith tank.
If we do, we will not be empty and dry. We will be filled with faith and power, ready to face whatever the world, the devil and life itself brings our way. We will be ready to walk by faith and not by sight.