It sounds terrible, but I've been dreading this section of Scripture. I've spent days (okay, weeks) on the first portion of this passage, and there are more days to come. I have quietly worried that I was "stuck" in the passage. My little foray into Romans felt fresh, and I've worried this would feel stale.
The Word of God stale? The sharper-than-a-two-edged sword Word of God boring? I might be boring, but God's Word has life in its pages.
I dreaded resuming the series until I opened my Bible and saw Truth again. I am sometimes so very foolish, and I apologize, to you my fellow readers and to our Lord. How could I possibly think reading about being a "faithful and sensible steward" is boring?
Close to Christ is where the action happens, where all the excitement begins.
We've seen pistis, the word translated as "faithful", several times before. I've reread these posts. Pistis is NOT boring. The woman with the issue of blood had enough pistis to reach out to Jesus' for healing. Jesus told her it was her pistis in Him that made her well. One of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is pistis.
This pistis, or faith, is a rock-solid certainty that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and the One through whom we receive salvation in the Kingdom of God.
It takes pistis to stake our eternal future on Jesus Christ.
It takes pistis to follow Him every day.
This is not an esoteric concept reserved for a few. This is the bone and muscle of being a disciple of Christ. It's more than "God said it so it's true". This pistis, this kind of faith, believes not only that God can do what He has said, but that He will.
It's the "down to the last dollar and I need milk for the children" faith that knows, somehow, God will send what's needed.
It's "I don't know which way to go because every door is closed" faith that expects, knows, God will open the one door we haven't yet seen, and it will be right.
I learned an interesting thing at Writer's Conference this week.
I have pistis.
I don't always act like I have pistis, but when I do, it's a glorious, exciting thing. When I believe with pistis, I believe that there is nothing my God can't do. Nothing needed He won't do to provide for me, His child.
With pistis, I know the impossible is possible, because I serve a God who laughs at impossibility. I become an Hercule Poirot-Miss Marple-McGyver problem solver because I know the answer is waiting to be found... in Christ alone.
It's who I want to be, and I've spent the last few days considering what it would take to live in wide-open pistis. As Paul wrote, I must get rid of the sin that encumbers me... the fear that encumbers me, and live like I believe. It changes my life when I live that way, and I love the excitement of that lifestyle, the fresh joy every day.
We're all supposed to be following Jesus with pistis, so let's do it. Let's live with wide open trust in the One who redeemed us. Let's live with the faith of those first century disciples, who weren't afraid to say, "I don't have any money, but I'll give you what I do have. Stand up and walk."
Our Father, forgive us for our failure to follow You, to believe You. Help our unbelief and give us the pistis to follow You, to believe You to do what You've promised to do. In Jesus' name, Amen.