Have you ever felt alone in a room full of people? If so, this blog might be just for you! Keep reading.
I was alone, or at least I felt that way. Women huddled in happy clusters chatting about first one thing and then another. Some propped babies on their hips. Others clutched Bibles in their hands. Most wore smiles on their faces. I wore one too. But it wasn’t a reflection of what was in my heart. The upturned lips were simply the camouflage I wore to blend in—to avoid being found out.
What’s wrong with me? I wondered. Why don’t I feel the joy these other women feel? What holds me back from experiencing the confidence and assurance they seem to experience? Why do I feel like I’m wandering around in a maze, trying to find a way out of these feelings of inadequacy?
The problem was I was stuck. Yes, I had professed Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I had done that. I knew that Christ had set me free, but honestly, I couldn’t tell you exactly what He had set me free from. He had set me free from the penalty of sin and spending eternity in hell. I got that. But I had a hunch He meant something more than heaven when He said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10) Click & Tweet! .
Sometimes the gap between the faith we long for and the faith we experience seems vast beyond bridging. We stand on the east ledge of the great expanse, thinking the west rim is out of reach or possibly not worth the effort. We think going from where we are and where we want to be is impossible, implausible or unrealistic, so we pull up a lawn chair in the land in-between and settle in. Content, but not really. Longing, but not quite enough. Satisfied, but not at all.
How do we move beyond the safe confines of cul-de-sac Christianity and into the mountain-moving, giant-slaying, lame-man-leaping, adventurous faith? How do we refuse to be lulled into the ridiculous idea that God is a safe, simple, grandfatherly gentleman who kisses babies, and helps find the closest parking space at the mall and matching towels at a clearance sale? It happens when we move beyond knowing the truth and actually start believing it.
Have you ever watched a circus performer on a flying trapeze? The aerialist swings out, swings back and then on the third swing she releases the bar mid-air and grabs hold of another bar or second performer hanging from his knees who swings toward her. Once she grabs hold, the crowd remembers to breathe. Somersaults, backflips, and triple twists wow the crowd. And each move requires the performer to let go and grab hold—let go of one bar and grab hold of another.
Without the faith to do so, the trapeze artist would simply swing back and forth until the pumping momentum gave way to dangling, or hang stuck in-between two platforms with hands clinging to both bars. Not the greatest show on earth.
Paul wrote to the Philippians, “I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me” (Philippians 3:12, emphasis added). Another version says it this way: “I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me His own” (AMP).
When you take hold, grasp, and make your own all of what Jesus had already taken hold of for you, you begin to experience life to the full—the faith you’ve always longed for. If we would grasp and make our own what Jesus has already done for us, we begin to grow as never before. Click & Tweet!
God’s promises are not automatic. We must move from knowing the promise to believing the promise, to actually taking hold of the promise through obedient action in order to make them a reality in our lives.
Today, pick one verse and believe it is true for you!
Lord, I feel like I know a lot of truth in my head, but sometimes it doesn’t make it to my heart. Sometimes I don’t live like what I know to be true. Help me to take hold of all that You have already taken hold of for me and placed in me. I want it all. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
What is one verse that you are going to take hold of and make your own today? Pick one that you have never really truly taken hold of before.
Have you ever felt stuck in your faith? In Take Hold of the Faith You Long For, I’ll show you how to let go of everything that holds you hostage to a “less than” life, move forward with all that Jesus has already placed in you, and live bold in the adventurous faith.