Life in general has been properly described as a journey,
not a destination. Therefore, the sum total of what we are engaged in is
essentially a walk. In this life's journey many have distracted
themselves with side issues, some are counting the miles they have covered so
far (such as years on earth, accomplished goals, material achievement,
etc.) and some have settled on the wayside. To a large proportion of
people the activities of fellow pilgrims have become their pre-occupation, and
so they turn themselves into walk-watchers.
To the believing community there are rules on how to walk on this journey. These rules are kept in proper perspective if we are focused on the essence of our walk. That essence is our faith in Christ . It is not the quantity of the power or wisdom or enthusiasm that exists in our walk that constitutes the essence of our walk.
As the song writer eloquently expressed it in "Just a Closer Walk With Thee" :
I am weak, but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I'll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.
Just a closer walk with Thee.
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea.
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.
The writer of the epistle to the Hebrews lays bare the secret of the marvels effected by the heroes of the Hebrew story. Obedient to His summons they range themselves in one great battalion, and with a united breath they cry: Why marvel ye at these things? Why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our power or holiness we had done them? The God of Abraham, of Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers made bare His holy arm and wrought them by us. And His name, through faith in His name, has done all these wonderful works.
We make a profound mistake in attributing to these men extraordinary qualities of courage and strength of body or soul. To do so is to miss the whole point of the reiterated teachings of Scripture. They were not different from ordinary men except in their faith . In many respects it is most likely that they were inferior to ourselves. We should probably be much surprised if we were to encounter them in the daily walks of our post-modern life and should find it almost impossible to believe that they wrought such acts of valor, endurance, and deliverance.
There was one characteristic common to all of these heroes which lifted them above ordinary men and women and secured for them a niche in the temple of Scripture--that they had a marvelous faculty of faith, which indeed is but the capacity of the human heart for God, a passionate hunger for and pursuit after God (Psalm 42:1). Four times over this faith is cited as the secret of all Moses did for all his people.
The same truth is repeatedly corroborated in the teaching of our Lord. He never stopped to ask what may be the specific quantity of power, or wisdom, or enthusiasm which existed in His disciples. In His judgment these things are as small dust in the balance not to be taken into serious consideration and not likely to affect the aggregate results of a person's life. His incessant demand is for faith. If only there is faith, though it be as a mustard seed, trees can be uprooted, mountains cast into the midst of the sea, and demons exorcised from their victims. To a father He once said: There is no 'if' in my power; it is in thyfaith. If thou can'st believe, all things are possible to Him that believeth (Matthew 9:19-23).
What is faith? It is not some inherent power or quality in certain persons by virtue of which they are able to accomplish special results unrealized by others. It is, rather, the power of putting self aside that God may work unhindered through nature. It is the attitude of heart which having ascertained the will of God and being desirous of becoming an organ for His will, goes on to expect that God will work His purpose through its medium. It is, in brief, that capacity for God which appropriates Him in its utmost limit, and becomes the channel or vehicle through which He passes forth to bless mankind. The believer, therefore, is God-filled, God-moved, and a God-possessed person, and the work which he or she does in the world is not his or hers but God through them. Thus, faith is the sum total of our expectations and the guarantee that they will be met (Hebrews 11:1).
For we walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). It is certain, as the present age draws to a close, that our God has great schemes on hand which must shortly be realized. According to His invariable method, He will have to perform them through the instrumentality and faith of men and women. The question is:
Are you willing to die to your own strength, to forsake your own plans for God, to seek out and do His will absolutely, to take up the attitude of entire and absolute surrender to His purpose, to feed daily on the promises of God as a girl on the pledges of her absent lover, to step out in faith reckoning without emotion of any kind on the faithfulness of God being fully persuaded that He will perform all that He has promised?
Dr. T. Cyprian Kia
Written this day May 20, 2001
Ankpa, Kogi State
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