Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Trust and Faith

   I have a place where I take our two vehicles for service.  I've been using them for three years for service and maintenance and have even purchased tires three sets of tires from them.  Everyone who has ever had the blessing of being a car owner knows that it comes with an equally weighty responsibility.  Automobiles are made of materials that break down over time and require regular attention to prevent something serious from happening.  It is a safety issue.  It is about trust. 
   Tires and brakes are the most critical components to maintaining safety.  Staying connecting to the road and being able to stop precisely when needed basically capture our must-haves when we get behind the wheel.  I desperately want to trust the craftsmanship of the parts one my car, and the skill of the technician who is doing the service work.  Every time I put pressure on the pedal to go, I am trusting that things will work as they are supposed to.  I have faith that what needs to happen, will happen.
   In the Hebrew Scriptures that Jesus of Nazareth grew up reading and memorizing, and later teaching from, the trust relationship between God and people was held together by faith in the other.  Two words were used most often to describe this fidelity, hesed and 'emeth, specifically translated as 'steadfast love and belief'.  One scholar has proposed that the people's very understanding of faith in God sprang from the conflicts and wars they lived through and conquered over.  The people literally had faith in God because God would show up and deliver.  Their faith was initiated by God's faithfulness.
   Could the same be said of us today?  What is our faith grounded in?  What do we believe in?  Do we believe God when he says he will deliver us?  When we are told it will be all right, in the end?  Do we believe in life over death?  What about when our spouse gets sick?  When there are complications at birth?  When we see a parent lose a child?  What is our testimony of God in the modern conflicts and wars in which we are engaged?
   Easter marks the greatest moment of God's faithfulness to us.  God delivers in a mighty way.  Along with inspiring music and great fellowship, we'll begin a new teaching series around faith,  Unwavering Faith in an Uncertain World.  I want to teach on how to face the toughest of situations with our faith not only intact, but stronger than ever!
   I have faith I'll see you Sunday!  Scott

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