Last week I talked about strengthening our faith. This week I want to focus on faith in action. If we are to walk in faith and not in fear, we have to take action accordingly. The action steps for faith versus fear will look completely different.
- When we walk in fear, we will hide in the midst of a storm. When we walk in faith, we will take a stand because we know that God is by our side.
- When we walk in fear, we won’t help the needy because we are afraid of lack. When we walk in faith, we trust God with our finances and know that He will provide.
- When we walk in fear, we might not take chances because we think we will fail. When we walk in faith, we seek God’s will and step forward with courage.
My husband is not the fearful sort. He is the first to stand up for integrity and justice. But he doesn’t like airplanes and has never been on one. His reason is a logical one. He says that if the plane has engine problems, we can’t just pull over to the side of the road, as we could in a vehicle. So when I asked him what fear and faith looked like to him, he said fear looks like an airplane ride. Faith looks like an airplane that is stuck on the ground because it doesn’t have an engine. Ha!
My husband was joking, of course. But this does bring up a good example. If we are fearful of something like flying, we will avoid it at all costs. But if we have faith, we know that we are covered by God’s protection.
My husband did follow up his first comment with another: Faith is knowing for a fact that God answers prayers. This brings me to the exact point of this post. Walking in faith means that we trust God and take faith-filled action.
Let’s take a look at a Biblical example. After the citizens of Judah had been exiled to Babylon, God planned to bring them back to their own country. They returned to their home land in three phases. During the second phase, there was a man named Ezra who played a key role. He was a priest and teacher of the law who led some of the people back Jerusalem and ultimately back to the Lord. But the people had a journey ahead of them. They had to travel from Babylon to Jerusalem, and the road ahead was not safe. They might meet opposition along the way, people who wanted to harm them or steal from them.
In Ezra 8:21-23 it says, “There, by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions. I was ashamed to ask the king for soldiers and horsemen to protect us from enemies on the road, because we had told the king, ‘The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to him, but his great anger is against all who forsake him.’ So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.”
There were several action steps that Ezra took towards faith:
- He proclaimed a fast. Fasting can help us to discern God’s will, it can help us to follow God’s lead, and it can profess the power of God.
- Ezra asked God for a safe journey. Turning to God in prayer is always key when facing our fears. When we walk in faith, this doesn’t mean we will never feel fear. But we can overcome it when we realize the Most High God is the source of our strength.
- Ezra did not act in fear by asking the king for soldiers and horsemen. This was not only faith in action, but it also demonstrated the power of God.
Ezra 8:31 says, “The hand of our God was on us, and he protected us from enemies and bandits along the way.”
When we act according to our faith and not our fear, we will come to fully realize the power of God, we will see miracles take place, and we will be blessed by God’s goodness. That is faith in action. So the next time you are faced with a fork in the road, one paved by your fears, and the other paved by faith, I encourage you to take the latter. God will be with you every step of the way.
© 2020 Bridget A. Thomas