Faith . . .
Don't live life without it!

When Faith Goes to Market - It Always takes a basketBaskets.  They come in all shapes and sizes.  Some are woven for special tasks and some just for beauty.  Today, most of these earthy fibers don’t quite share the same burden as their historical predecessors but they are still popular and provide for many uses.

I love this quote in Streams in the Desert, a devotional compiled by Charles E. Cowman.  It’s message goes deep with but a few words.  Jesus’ words in Mark 5:34, came to mind, “And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy infirmity.”

This simple quote is really a message about what is within us rather than what is in our hands.    Hearts and baskets can’t really be compared, but in a sense both contain the ability to hold something.  It’s easy for us to hold fast to broken expectations if our past holds such things.  But, our past does not have to be indicative of our future!  Faith is crucial to live a life of hope and expectation.

Hebrews 11:1 describes God’s view of faith, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

As I read Charles Cowman’s quote, I had to examine my own heart as I thought about living day-to-day with expectation, hope, and faith.  Faith allows us to look at an empty basket, dream, prayer, petition, outcome (fill in the blank) and to look at this void of what we are hoping for with expectation.

Faith isn’t a stand alone kind of thing.  We don’t wake up and say, “I’m going to have faith.”  Tada, life is different.  There is the whole tug-of-war discussion about faith as a noun or a verb or both.  Well, I will simplify my thoughts.  Faith needs something to lean on, to sit on, to put its full weight on.  Faith is evident in our lives – or not.  One thing is for sure, faith is displayed in God’s word as essential for all who accept Christ.

So, what’s in your heart today?  Are there areas where you are heading into or through a place without the provision of carrying or collecting the substance of what is hoped for?  Another words, did you leave your basket at home?  We don’t hesitate to keep tabs on our keys or phones, oftentimes patting our pockets or checking our purses to be sure we’ve not forgotten them somewhere. How much more valuable is the act of establishing our faith, routinely checking our hearts to be sure we haven’t left home without it.

So then, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17).

I am reminded in Romans 10:17 that faith is mine for the gathering as I delve into the word of God.  As I read and the Holy Spirit gives understanding of the scriptures, faith ensues.  What abundance awaits us as we pursue what is ours!  Let us remember to be prepared with expectation, believing we will come away with our hearts as full as Simon Peter’s nets.

Reaching in faith, may our faith be visible, active, and persevere through all that would hinder the external evidence of what flows from our hearts.  I close my eyes and wonder about the woman in Mark 5:34.  Suddenly, there she is standing on the platform at our church.  She is chaste, adorned with an expression that may only be worn by those who have had an exchange with the Savior.  She is beautiful and emanates love, humility, power, and strength through her countenance, having been immersed in the presence of her First Love.  She steps forward to the microphone and looks up, seeing what may not be seen in the physical realm, her arms lifted, she stands silently.  We watch, waiting, listening.  She looks at us and then with one word, her message is as an arrow to ready hearts prepared for such a message.  “REACH!”

May we too carry such a message from our own exchanges with the very one who is the subject of our faith, Jesus Christ!