The “Faith Walk” and Parenting…

As Christians, we love our kids, and more than anything else we want to see them serving the Lord!  Devoted Christians begin praying for them even before they are born!  We have ceremonies of dedication we participate in that formally consecrate them and us as parents, and the entire believing community – the church, to their discipleship and spiritual nurture.  Then we watch, and pray, and do our best to influence them for Christ.  We pray they will embrace our values and the Savior!  When the day comes that they put their faith in Christ for themselves and are “born again” we almost “think we’ve died and gone to heaven!”  Every challenge they experience, every temptation they face, every concerning influence on their lives drives us to our knees in intense intercession.  If they live out their commitment to Christ in faith-obedience, our hearts are filled with incredible thanksgiving!

That pretty well summarizes the message of “the walk of faith” we find Moses and his parents in Hebrews 11:23-28…

“By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.  By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin.  He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward.  By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible.  By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.”

I want to be that kind of parent!  And like Moses, I want to make life choices by faith that express my devotion and commitment to God – that demonstrate I’m “walking by faith!”

More From the Great “Faith Chapter” – Hebrews 11

“The Walk of Faith” could just as easily be called “The Life of Faith.”  And what better human example of it than Abraham (and Sarah, his wife).  Two people who certainly were not perfect… humans aren’t.  But two people who evidenced incredible trust in God!  Hebrews 11:8-19 says… “By faith Abraham…” (and “By faith Sarah…”)

The first faith lesson Abraham illustrates in this passage is that faith trusts God’s guidance by obeying.  “Abraham obeyed when he was called to go… and he went, not knowing where he was going… By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents.”  He was willing to do that because He trusted God to fulfill His promises regarding “a Promised Land.”  Are you willing to trust God’s guidance?  Are you willing to trust Him to fulfill His promises?

The second lesson has to do with God promising something so incredible it caused Sarah, Abraham’s 90-year-old wife, to laugh!  God told her she would have a son in old age, when she was past bearing children, as the fulfillment of God’s covenant.  Hebrews 11:11 says she “received power to conceive…because she considered Him faithful who had promised.”  In a very real sense, the “sex act” for them became “an act of faith!”  The Bible says, Abraham “did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead… or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb.  No unbelief made him (or her) waver concerning the promise of God, but they grew strong in faith and gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised!” (Romans 4:19-21)  Faith embraces and acts on God’s promise even when circumstances seem impossible!

Faith also trusts the character and provision of God when we don’t understand why God is asking us to do something.  Here it is… “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac … He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking he did receive him back.  The entire incredible story of faith obedience is found in Genesis 22:1-14.  Are you willing to trust God’s character and continue to practice faith-obedience when you don’t understand why God is asking you to do something or when you’re going through something difficult?

Here’s the way I want to live out my life… it’s expressed in Hebrews 11:13… “These all died in faith, NOT having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.”  Many of God’s promises will be fulfilled in our lifetime… Praise God for that.  But many of them await the distant future – even as distant as Heaven… I want to “walk by faith” every day into the future until God fulfills all his promises!  Don’t you?

The Faith Walk…

THE WORDS “BY FAITH…” APPEAR OVER AND OVER IN HEBREWS 11 LIKE A MANTRA… One case study after another emphasizing “the walk of faith” … what faith does, how faith acts, how faith expresses itself in the daily challenges of life.  Today I’m focusing on Hebrews 11:4-7…

Verse 4 emphasizes faith responds positively – even to disappointments!  Cain offered his best effort… Able offered God what He desired – what was acceptable to Him.  Cain got bitter and focused upon himself rather than on what pleased God.  He stiffened, soured and was swept away by envy and hatred.  Faith seeks to please God and repudiates self will!

Enoch just flat out did it… “He walked with God!” (Genesis 5:24)  His life of continual communion and fellowship with God is a challenge to us all… He did it without a Bible, without a host of encourages, and sustained it through thick and thin longer than any of us comprehend (365 years!).  Finally God just came and caught him away… He proved something absolutely fundamental… simply trusting God every day of your life and walking through life with that trust “pleases God!”  (Verse 5)

In verse 7 Noah illustrates another powerful faith lesson… Faith takes the warning God gives very seriously!  Faith lives life in “reverent fear.”  He took the obedient steps that were necessary to save his household from an evil and decadent culture.  His life became a message to his culture and he “became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith!”

But verse 6 sums up the “the walk of faith!”  It communicates a principle I must never forget… “Without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God!  For whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him!”

Gotta tell you… I NEVER, NEVER, NEVER want to forget that!

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