Keep the Faith – by Tim Howard
Posted on 11.07.2012
I am pleased to welcome guest blogger Tim Howard, Lead Pastor of Koinonia Christian Fellowship in Hanford, CA today! He has worked in ministry for 40 years and has been married to his beautiful and gifted wife, Donna for 40 years. – Janice
I began developing a passion for God when I turned 6 years old. Even at that young age, I was convinced God existed and He was good. One of the verses I learned as a young boy is found in the Bible – Heb. 11:6. It says: “… it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that there is a God and that he rewards those who sincerely seek.” NLT
Even at a young age, the sun, the moon, the rivers, mountains, clouds and all of creation seemed to shout: There is a God! I recall saying to myself: “No person could create all this – there must be a God.” Solomon said: “Wisdom shouts in the streets… will we not listen?” Well, I listened and faith in Christ has directed my steps for the past 55 years.
Faith. It’s hard to define but we all have it. Every time you step into an airplane you exercise faith. You put your confidence in a person believing they will navigate the flight and get you to your destination safely. You know nothing about the pilot; his or her qualifications, abilities or present state of mind, yet you put your trust and confidence in them. Every time you invest money through an investor you are putting faith in those who oversee the enterprises.
Heb. 11:1-2 “What is faith? It is the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the evidence of things we cannot yet see. God gave his approval to people in days of old because of their faith.” NLT
Faith sees something beyond the material realm. When I do something kind for someone I’m hoping they will see beyond my good deed. I want them to see the kindness of God and His benevolent attitude toward them. That’s what my actions are supposed to reveal. Unfortunately, many never see God in the good that is happening. Without faith, a person who looks at a snow-covered mountain range, a beautiful sunset or the mighty waves of an ocean, will not be able to see a powerful creator behind the visual display.
Faith in God releases God to change things! There are many illustrations in the Bible, where faith opened the door for divine healing. People who were sick got healed. People who were bound got delivered. Many blind eyes were made to see, deaf ears began to hear and things designed to destroy people were turned around to develop and strengthen them. All because faith released God to move!
At other times, however, faith in God didn’t change the circumstances. Rather than removing the challenges confronting people, faith releases strength for them to go through the challenges. They endure hardship and rejoice because they have faith in God. Sometimes faith changes things around you but at other times faith changes things within you.
When you put your faith in Jesus, He is released to change something! For the past 55 years my faith has been altering me. I have a long way to go and I’m not what I ought to be in many ways but I’m sure a lot better than I use to be. At least that’s what my wife says! Faith. The real question isn’t do you have it, because we all do, but what, where or who are you placing your faith in? That’s the million-dollar question.