If you have been a Christian for longer than a week, you have probably heard the phrase “walk by faith” many times. But it struck me during Sunday’s message that when we hear it, we might actually just hear “blah, blah, blah.”
It is such a well-used expression. And it’s a well-used expression that doesn’t often bear spiritual fruit. It seems nebulous and a bit ethereal. It is “out there” for the most spiritual among us, not for us “regular” Christians.
So, I thought that maybe a real-life story that I read in a recent edition of Christianity Today might help make the concept of “walking by faith” a bit more personal and authentic.
The story was highlighting a people group in Brazil who had a visit from some modern missionaries. They arrived by canoe, climbed up into a hut and initiated some conversation with a village leader. After exchanging pleasantries with the old woman, she asked a direct question. She wanted to know why they were there.
“We are missionaries,” I said in my broken Paumari (their tribal language). “We want to help you to know Jesus, the Son of God and if you want, we can also help to set up a school and teach everyone to read.”
The lady looked at me with a puzzled expression and started shouting for her grandson, Danilo. “Come over, Danilo. The missionaries have arrived. Take them to their home.”
“Our home?” I asked. She pointed to an empty, tall hut nearby. “Danilo and I built this hut two summers ago, preparing for your arrival. We heard on the radio about the Creator God and how His Son, Jesus wants to help us. I said, ‘If that’s true, he will send us his people.’ So, we built the hut for you.”
Two years before the missionaries arrived, a hut was built for them. Two years before it was needed, those folks responded to the Lord in faith. Now, that is faith in action! That is walking by faith!
I am ashamed to admit that I often operate my Christian walk as an extension of my own insight, knowledge, and experiences. And I don’t think I am the only one. All too often many of us are spiritually “deaf” and reluctant to step out and believe, truly believe, that the Lord is really at work. We need to listen with our hearts, respond with our whole being and learn to trust.
Join me this week and let’s ask the Holy Spirit to tutor us in the elementary aspects of faith. Let’s respond to His prompting. Let’s obey His direction. Let’s learn to trust!
Imagine what our stories will sound like!