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October 2011

Faith

Chevis F. Horne is recorded as saying, "Faith is reliance upon the goodness of God, trusting His steadfast love, and responding to His saving grace in Christ."  Chevis F. Horne's statement lines up with what the New Testament says about faith.  Chevis goes on to say that faith often flourishes in an inhospitable climate.  It is not a fair-weather faith, it often walks in shadows and darkness.  It is faith that originates, not in quiet and sequestered harbors, but on the high seas where the winds are high and the storms are fierce.  Often life seems to argue against justice, goodness, and God.  Yet men and women, while sometimes doubting, go on believing.  It is a tenacious faith.  It keeps on holding on.  A young Jewish girl in the Warsaw ghetto managed to escape over the wall and hide in a cave.  She died there shortly before the allied army came, but before her death, she had scratched on the wall three things.  First, "I believe in the sun, even though it is not shining."  Second, "I believe in love, even when feeling it not."  Third, "I believe in God, even when He is silent."  We should give attention to faith.  There is no joy, vitality, or hope without it.  It opens up life to God in whom are the springs of life.  And while it does not save us, it is the saving response. 

In The Beginning

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." (Genesis 1:1).
Keep in mind and heart that no explanation/information pertaining to the creation story is given in terms of what may have taken place prior to God's intervention. Students of the Bible have engaged in many discussions regarding this subject. In fact, many Christians identify the rise, rebellion, and judgment of Satan as being the motivating factors behind this chaotic state that God corrected. Let's keep in mind and heart that God's creation of the heavens and the earth was accomplished by the power of His Word. Therefore, further explanation as to precisely how it was accomplished is not required. The facts remain, God takes a singular verb (created) and tells the story of what He fashioned anew. God renewed what was once in chaotic state. He changed chaos into cosmos, disorder into order, and emptiness into fullness. He (God) accomplished this act without eyewitness testimony from humanity, nor did He provide charts and diagrams of His creative works were achieved. God simply introduces Himself as the who of this creation story. 
 
It is important to remember that the creation story is not about how, but rather this story is all about who. Modern science focuses upon the concept of natural law and repeatedly ask the question how? While modern science remains stuck on the how, Christianity continues forward by resting it's faith upon who (God). The Speakers Bible states that the Bible pictures Creation as a movement of the Spirit of God issuing in the utterance of a creative Word. In other words, God willed the world to be and the world came into being, and it continues to exist by a continual exercise of the same will.
 
My fellow brother's and sister's in Christ, please do not allow modern science or anyone/anything else for that matter to redirect you from who (God) to how (seeds of doubt). God does not expect or require His children to explain how He did what He states He accomplished throughout the Creation story, but He does require and expect us to have faith and believe. So, the next time someone attempts to force you in a corner, and demand answers to God's creative story, simply respond in love by informing them that God's creation of the heavens and the earth is not about how, but it is all about who (God). Don't be afraid to let the doubters know that doubt sees obstacles; faith sees the way. Doubt sees the darkest night, faith sees the day! Doubt dreads to take a step; faith soars on high, doubt questions, "who believes?" Faith answers, "I". 
 
Copyright (c) Elton L. Young, 2002-2011
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The Power of Prayer

Someone once said, "Prayer is the key of the morning and the bolt of the night."  Studdert Kennedy took the above quote a step further when he said, "Prayer is not an easy way of getting what we want, but the only way of becoming what God wants us to be."  It is through prayer that we should determine by direction of the Holy Spirit that the life we live, and the ministry work perform, both present and to come, is ordered in and by God's Word.  Therefore, daily I pray standing upon Colossians 1:9-14, and encourage each Christian to do the same knowing that such prayer forever keeps us within God's mighty will and direction for life.  What God has for me is for me!  What about your prayer life?