For a minute, I’d like you to examine your relationship with God for the past year. How fruitful was your walk with Him? Did you go closer to or farther from Him? Were there certain things that were emphasized? Did He reveal to you your calling or purpose? Was there anything that He’s telling you to give up or surrender? Was it a level up or level down — or a roller coaster, maybe? Now that your sixty-seconds are up, let’s take a look at this quote:
“If you’re not daring to believe God for the impossible, you’re sleeping through some of the best parts of your Christian life… If the size of your vision isn’t intimidating you, there’s a good chance that it’s insulting God.” (Sun Stand Still - Steven Furtick)
I challenge you to dream big this summer. One of the wonderful benefits of youth is that we do not believe much in the word “impossible.” So, I dare you to not be a living testimony to the saying, “Monkey see, monkey do.” May your perspective of God not be so limited, but rather renewed and revived. Nothing is impossible for our great God. My prayer for you, my dear friend, is that you would develop an audacious faith that would be pumped into your transformed inner being — forever. In short, I’d like you to invite the Holy Spirit to kick off a never ending great riot within you.
What exactly is this “audacious faith”? According to Steven Furtick, “It’s the stuff that triggers ordinarily levelheaded people like you and me to start living with unusual boldness.” I suppose that you have quite a number of questions already in your mind, like: “How do I start living with unusual boldness?”, “Why put my faith in God?”, “I am way too young [or old] for this … there is no way God can use me now.”, “May ganun pala? Wehh.. (with mouth wide open and sudden gasp).” Now, let’s answer one-by-one the matters above.
Speculation #1: How do I start living with unusual boldness?
Mind the adjective “unusual.” I believe that this short — yet, significant — verse sums this all up:
“For we live by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7 - NIV)
In this worldly generation, most people — including us — tend to be so dependent on visual and upfront miracles. A weak foundation built upon such basis, like that, just reveals our lack of confidence in the Alpha and the Omega. Let me give you an example of faith that was not based on sight: In Matthew 14:22-33, Peter could never have walked on water if he’d never left the boat. Just imagine the foggy scene that was described as
“…the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves.(v24 - NLT)”
So, in the midst of the fog of this age, leave your boat and just walk on water.
Speculation #2: Why put my faith in God?
Time is in God’s hands. He knows what’s best for each of us. The Creator has a far more illustrious plan for us, compared to the ones that we will ever make up for ourselves. You must believe that the God we serve is great and good.
“More than once I have heard God say that power belongs to Him and that His love is constant.You yourself, O Lord, reward everyone according to their deeds. (Psalm 62:11-12 - GNT)”
Knowing that He is great and that He is good are two very different statements. Each of them has a special message to point out. God is great (that power belongs to Him…) - You know that He is able to respond to your dreams and prayers. God is good (His love is constant…) - You know that He wants to respond to your dreams and prayers. Is the God we worship awesome or what?
Speculation #3: I am way too young [or old] for this … there is no way God can use me now.
For the young ones, this is where Pastor Steven Furtick comes in. At the age of 16, he realized his calling. God was prompting him to plant a Church in a big city, which was already filled with Churches. He is the young and hip — yes, hip! — founder and lead pastor of Elevation Church in Charlotte, North Carolina. Elevation was deemed one of the “10 fastest growing Churches in America”, from 2007 till 2009. The messages he preaches about revolve around audacious faith and how to approach life’s situations from a godly perspective.
I encourage you to focus on how God sees you — through the eyes of His compassion. Still, its is also important to learn how to take in constructive criticism from others that are genuinely concerned. Stop taking into heart the lies of those judgmental haters. Preach to yourself, if you have to!
“Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. (1 Timothy 4:12 - NLT)”
I believe that, even from this early on (or late) in life, we should already be striving to be a Christlike example to the people around us. It is never too early nor too late to set out the God fearing standards for your life. Be an example with your words by empowering, not degrading. Be an example in the way that you live by being disciplined, not slacking off. Be an example in your love by performing acts of kindness, without expecting anything in return. Be an example in your faith by persevering in your walk with God. Put your heart, mind, and soul into it. Your time with the Father should never ever be neglected. Finally, be an example of purity by waiting on God to bring to you — in His perfect time — your God’s best. Keep yourself pure and to preserve yourself for the one God has prepared for you. Do not engage in immorality which could leave deep scars not only physically, mentally, emotionally but also spiritually. Fill yourself with the God’s Word and don’t let the world pressure you into its mold. Do not settle for anything less, our Heavenly Father has a plan for our life and trust me.. it’s better than what we can ever plan or imagine.
Speculation #4: May ganun pala? Wehh.. (with mouth wide open and sudden gasp).
Yes, may ganun. It is vital for us to take in the fact that the epitome of who God is, is far too complex for our mere human minds to ever comprehend. Despite our evident lack of understanding and comprehension, we can still attain audacious about our faith. I’d like to further refreshen your memory (or maybe incite a great riot in your mind about the awesomeness of our God) with the following:
“So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up. (Exodus 3:3 - NIV)”
“So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies, (Joshua 10:13a - NIV)”
“Now fill your pitchers and take them to the host,” Jesus said, and they did. When the host tasted the water that had become wine (he didn’t know what had just happened but the servants, of course, knew), he called out to the bridegroom, “Everybody I know begins with their finest wines and after the guests have had their fill brings in the cheap stuff. But you’ve saved the best till now! (John 2:8-10 - MSG)”
God can use you. He can use your particular situation — whether good or bad. You might think that your personal testimony is not as dramatic as others — so, what? God can still use you. The men and women God used are no better than you and me.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28 - NIV)”
The waiting period for our bold prayers to be answered is not the most fun of experiences out there. But always keep in mind. God is listening. Be still and wait on Him. It is never too early nor too late to activate your audacious faith.
“So go ahead: Pray. Pray imaginatively. Pray unstoppably. And expect a miracle.” (Steven Furtick)