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Do You Have Faith; or a Wish List?

We often hear about people living by faith, and when we look at people who practice what they preach, we all want to live that way. And the best part is; we all should live that way.

According to Mark 11:22-25 (NIV);22 “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “Truly[f] I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” [26] [g]

But how do you do it? How do you actually live by faith? What does it take?

Many people think of themselves as “faith people”, but you never see any substance in their lives. They would talk about living by faith, yet you hardly ever see any changes in their own lives.

Having a Wish List versus Having Faith.

What seems to be the problem? Are these people hypocrites? Are they living in a dream world? Not necessarily.

Many of these people might be very sincere people. The problem is that many people would hear or read about what God did for someone else. A miracle would take place in someone else’s life, and they would like God to do the same for them.

This is having a wish and it should not be confused with faith. No matter what your situation is, we should not base our prayers on what happened to someone else.

It is good to take note and pay attention to the miracles that take place in someone else’s life, and it is good to pay attention to people who do live by faith and follow their example. But their faith and their prayers are based on their lives and their circumstances.

I have mentioned this example before in other posts as well; it is good to have a role model, and follow his / her example by doing what makes him / her successful, but don’t try to become a duplicate of that person. Don’t try to become a second Bishop T.D. Jakes or a second Bill Gates.

Gloria Copeland describes this exact scenario in detail in her article How to Develop a Christian Worldview of Faith.

In her article she says “Oftentimes, believers think they’re walking in faith when in reality they’re not. They’re actually walking in unbelief. In the first place, they really don’t have true, Bible hope. All they have is a wish list. They’re wishing God would do this for them, and wishing He would do that. They heard how He did it for Brother and Sister So-and-So. And now they’d like Him to do it for them.

I cannot tell you how many people I’ve known in 45 years of ministry who thought they were “faith people.” For years, I watched them hang around the faith teaching, yet never did I see any substance, and never did they see any real changes in their lives and circumstances. What was wrong?

Well, I’ll tell you. When it came to God’s Word, they didn’t use any faith. They merely gave mental assent to it. They didn’t put faith in it enough to act on it. They only agreed with what they read in the Scriptures. (Read James 1:22-26.)

Remember, “God said…and it was so.” God’s act of speaking released faith to that which He believed. When He said, Light be! He fully expected light to be. His faith took action. It spoke.

Likewise, our faith must take action, and it must take action based on the Word of God.”

I would like to say it this way: we should change our worldview to a Word-view.

Do You Have Faith or a Wish-List

Know Your Identity and What It Means To Speak and Act in The Name of Jesus.

Jesus paid the ultimate price and we have been set free from the law. Galatians 4:4-7 (NIV) saysBut when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.[b]Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba,[c] Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.”

All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Jesus, and He has given us the authority of His name to do mighty works (Matthew 28:18-20). In John 14:11-13 (NIV) Jesus said “11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

That should leave no guess work as to your identity. But why are so many Christians still living a life of defeat then?

Many people get stuck at the idea to pray “in the Name of Jesus”, and that is good. That is what we should do. But that’s not where it stops. We need to add faith to our prayers. To refer back to the article by Gloria Copeland again; in the same article she says ‘I like to describe faith like this: Faith is movement. It’s a mouth in motion.

Once we have said ‘amen’, we shouldn’t stand back to see what God is going to do.

Think of it this way; when an ambassador to a country attends an international meeting, he is literally representing his country. When he speaks, he speaks on behalf of his country. That is why he speaks with authority. We are God’s ambassadors here on earth.

But it even goes further still. After we have prayed, we should speak words of faith and we should act in faith. If we have prayed according to Mark 11:22-25, we cannot walk around in doubt and hope things will work out. For God to perform the miracle, we need to take action by speaking and acting in faith. Then God can work the miracle and we’ll see the miracle taking place through our actions and the following results. That is why it is so important to realize that we do not do things in our own power, but we can do all things through Him who gives us strength (Philippians 12:14). This scripture doesn’t say we ‘receive all things…’ it says we ‘can do all things….’

I would like to compare it with this; you can get onto a bicycle, but unless you start pedaling, you won’t be going anywhere. You’ll just fall down.

Yes, we do receive by faith (Mark 11:23), but that’s the bicycle – the first step. Then we need to start doing, we need to start pedaling. You cannot do the one without the other.

It happens in this order: Believe – receive – action – manifestation.

Who Do People See in You?

We often hear people saying “I can see John’s father in him. John is just like his father”.

On the other hand it can happen that you hear people say “Charles has changed a lot since he is hanging out with that bad crowd. They really have a bad influence on him.”

Whose spirit is reigning in you? Who do people see when they see you? Is it the Holy Spirit?

Jesus is love. Jesus is gentle. But Jesus is also bold. Jesus is strong and powerful. Jesus takes authority. Jesus is not fearful or timid.

QUESTIONSo, who do people see in you?

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About Jaco Alberts (25 Articles)
Jaco Alberts is a Christian blogger and freelance writer. Jaco lives in Durban, South Africa, with his lovely wife Elmarie. They have two beautiful daughters, Danielle and Lucinda, who are both married and who also currently live in the Durban area. Jaco loves writing about faith and how our thinking impacts our lives. It is his mission to end the confusion by showing how we shouldn’t be pre-occupied by what people are saying. We should test everything we hear against the one and only true source; the Bible. Only then can we decide who we should listen to and who to avoid. By eliminating the confusion, we can focus on the truth, and daily renew our minds to live the life God wants us to live. You can find out more about Jaco at jacoalberts.com

5 Comments on Do You Have Faith; or a Wish List?

  1. Hi, Jaco/Yvonne

    Faith is the foundation of our christian living. The problem with most of us is that our faith are only in our heads but in our hearts. Until we truly believe God will and can perform the promise of each Rhema verse in our heart, the faith is not real one.

    i love you reminded us that we are the ambassador of God kingdom on earth. we should know we have authority and power to live out the christian life on earth.

    Excellence post about faith

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Stella,

      Thank you so much for your valuable input.I do appreciate it.

      I fully agree with you that a big problem for most of us is the fact that we have faith in our heads, but not in our hearts. It is like knowing about it, but we do not apply our faith to make it personal for ourselves.

      It is good to have knowledge, but wisdom comes when we start applying the knowledge. Knowledge means nothing without application.

      Have a blessed day.

      Jaco.

      Like

  2. Very well expressed! Provides us ‘Food for Thought’. In full agreement!

    Liked by 2 people

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