I had several boxes and some junk mail that needed disposed of so I took them out to burn them. I lit the pile in several different places but noticed a napkin that I had thrown in so I lit it. Now the boxes were slow to catch fire but that napkin flamed up and within a few minutes, the entire pile was nothing but ashes except for a stick that was still smoldering and a rock that didn’t burn.
So here’s my question…what is your faith made of?
Do you believe that there is a God but you do nothing to honor Him or obey him?
Do you believe in God, sometimes obey Him, maybe even go to church, but then the rest of the week, give little or no thought to Him?
Or do you believe in God and commit yourself to the work that He has given you? Never perfect, but always striving to be a faithful servant of God. Do you study His Word, honor Him in your daily life, and wake up each day putting on the full armor of God?
If you are the first one, that believes but doesn’t honor or obey Him…you are like the napkin. When you are faced with trials and your belief is held to the fire, it will be consumed and you will be left with nothing but a pile of ashes.
If you are the second one, you believe but only on your terms and in your time, then you are the stick. You may be able to withstand the fire that this world throws at you a little longer than the napkin did, but eventually you will be overtaken.
However, if you are the third one, strong in your belief and commitment to God and the things of God…looking for ways to serve God rather than looking for how He can serve you…protected by His armor….you are the rock. Even amongst the flames, you are safe in your faith. Allowing the fire to refine rather than consume your faith.
So here’s my question….or questions. Is belief without action truly belief? Is belief without commitment truly belief? Is belief on our own terms truly belief?
I won’t answer that for you. But what I will tell you, is that I would rather stand at the judgement seat of Christ, my faith charred and covered with soot and ash, and hear, “Well done my good and faithful servant.” than to stand before Him, with no faith to show because it wasn’t strong enough to withstand the fire and hear Him say, “Depart from Me for I never knew you.”
If I’m being honest, I don’t even need to hear Him say, “Well done”. I’d be happy with, “You certainly were a handful, but you tried and I love you anyway. Come on in.”
For You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined.
And he said to him, ‘Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.’
Luke 19:17 NKJV
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
Matthew 7:21-23 NKJV