God wants us to look at Him through eyes of faith. But how can we do that?
1. Spiritual faith requires trust in God’s character.
Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you. (Psalm 9:10, NIV)
How well do you know God? You cannot really trust someone that you don’t know. How has God been at work in your life? Your faith in God will grow as you become more aware of his faithfulness to you.
2. Spiritual faith is developed through God’s Word.
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. (Romans 10:17, NASB)
The Bible tells us what God is like, records the promises He has made to us and illustrates His faithfulness in the lives of others. It is by reading and meditating upon the word of God that we become more confident and willing to trust God.
3. Spiritual faith is an on-going choice.
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, … (Colossians 2:6, NIV)
What did you do to receive Christ as your Savior and Lord? It was through an act of spiritual faith that you responded to God’s invitation for salvation. You heard the gospel, believed it to be true, and then, through an act of your will, reached out to God to accept His offer.
That is a display of spiritual faith. But then after we are born again, all to often, we try to depend on our physical senses to help us live the Christian life. But it doesn’t work that way. We must continue to choose to trust God throughout every day.
Living by Faith in God
And without faith it is impossible to please God, … (Hebrews 11:6, NIV)
God is pleased when we trust Him and live our lives relying on His faithfulness. But that is a process that develops over time as our knowledge of Him increases and we repeatedly experience His loving care. However it is not without struggle. Our human nature is constantly urging us to depend on what we can see, touch and feel. Meanwhile the Spirit encourages us to believe what God has told us and act accordingly.
For we live by faith, not by sight. (2 Corinthians 5:7, NIV)
So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised…. And my righteous ones will live by faith. But I will take no pleasure in anyone who turns away.” (Hebrews 10:35,36,38, NLT)
God is the object for spiritual faith. We trust in Him and His character. Because He is trustworthy we believe what He says with confidence. Then we follow through on our trust in God and our belief in His word by taking the appropriate action. As we persevere in doing what God has told us, He brings about the fulfillment of what He said He would do.
Having the right object for your faith is far more important than how strong your belief is and your willingness to act on it.
For example, picture a lake covered with thin ice. You may have incredible faith in that ice. You may be convinced that it is strong enough to drive a truck over. So you act on your belief by confidently skating out on the ice. The ice breaks and you get wet or may even drown. What happened? You had strong belief but it was placed in the wrong object. No amount of belief can overcome the deficiencies of thin ice.
Now assume that the ice is very thick but your belief is somewhat shaky. You may be scared to death as you gently inch your way out across the ice. Guess what happens? The ice holds you because it is a worthy object for your belief. But even though the ice was thick enough, you had to have enough belief to be willing to get on it before you could enjoy the benefits of skating.
Faith in the trustworthiness of God is an absolute necessity in order for us to enjoy all that God has planned for our lives.