In Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade, there is a scene where Indiana has to cross a great ravine, but there seems to be no safe way to do so. Do you recall what he did? He literally had to take a leap of faith and walk off the ledge. As he does, he suddenly discovers a way to cross was there all the time, hidden from sight by an optical illusion. However, it took faith mixed with action to reveal it.
How can we ensure we do likewise and never allow our faith to stagnate. Three reminders can help reveal how active we’re allowing our faith to be:
Usefulness: Does our faith contribute to any impact in our own lives, or the lives of others (1 Thessalonians 1:3)? For example, there was a time in my own life I claimed to be a Christian, but frankly, I wasn’t living for anyone but myself. I neglected my health for work, my family for work and my faith for work. Achieving more praise and promotion was my idol and everything of true value was being sacrificed in order to accomplish these shallow goals. It wasn’t until I was faced with a poor health diagnosis due to stress and lack of exercise, unrest in my family due to unintentional neglect, and an emptiness in my soul due to God being misaligned in my priorities that I collapsed to my knees in complete surrender to God, begging for His intervention. Today, by the grace of God, my health is good, my family is blossoming, God remains my highest priority and work is no longer an idol, but a gift that allows me to help others and share Christ. Therefore, the question we can all consider during our lifetime is how useful are we allowing our faith to be?
Heartlessness: Do we believe in Jesus? Good. However, even the demons believe (Mark 1:24). So, does that make them Christian? Clearly not, for they do not combine their belief with surrender, or obedience. Rather, it serves to fuel their rebellion. Thus, who are we serving when we claim belief, but continue to live in rebellion to Christ? This is why knowledge isn’t enough, and why Jesus declares we need to be born again. This occurs when we surrender our lives to Christ, receive His Spirit and our hearts are renewed – a miraculous transformation only Jesus can accomplish.
Fruitfulness: During my days as a “cultural” Christian, there wasn’t much eternal fruit being produced. Even though I had a good job, was in a respected leadership position, had a beautiful family and was a friendly guy, there wasn’t much being generated for God’s kingdom – it was all for my own. Therefore, may we always consider our actions – do they indicate we are living for ourselves, or for Christ? For God’s children, regardless of what is professed, will always be known by their fruit (Matthew 7:20-21).
Application: “Sound Of Silence” – Genesis 3:6
Where was Adam when Satan approached Eve in the garden? We might initially think she was alone. However, the truth is, Adam right there with her. Yet, he remained silent. He knew the truth, but he took no action. He did nothing with it. We too know the truth, but how often do we remain silent, or take no action? Like Adam, our silence has dire consequences. Thus, may we always seek to mix our walk with the talk.