The Lan­guage Of Faith Re­veals What’s In Your Heart, Spills Out

Washington County Enterprise-Leader - - CHURCH - Ron Wood Colum­nist RON WOOD IS A WRITER AND MIN­IS­TER. CON­TACT HIM AT WOOD.STONE.RON@GMAIL.COM OR VISIT WWW. TOUCHEDBYGRACE.ORG. THE OPIN­IONS EX­PRESSED ARE THOSE OF THE AU­THOR.

Some peo­ple are so steeped in skep­ti­cism that doubt has be­come their na­tive lan­guage. By con­trast, Chris­tians are known as be­liev­ers (or they should be). Why is that? Be­cause we have trusted in a Per­son, the Lord Je­sus. We have be­lieved the word that God has given to us. Be­cause of this, we don’t use neg­a­tive speech like those around us who are with­out faith.

Faith has a vo­cab­u­lary. When some­one speaks from a heart filled with faith, the words they use sound pos­i­tive and hope­ful. Their an­tic­i­pa­tion of hoped-for achieve­ments makes them sound like th­ese things have al­ready hap­pened. The lan­guage of faith lets us see what is pos­si­ble.

There is a real con­nec­tion be­tween what you say and what you see. The use of words that re­flect au­then­tic faith isn’t magic or make be­lieve, nor wish­ful think­ing or pre­tend­ing. When the Lord wanted to bring Abra­ham to faith, he showed him pic­tures to in­spire his imag­i­na­tion. He promised him that his off­spring would be as nu­mer­ous as the sand on the beach or the stars in the sky. Abra­ham pic­tured it and be­lieved it. God saw his faith and de­clared him just. For this rea­son, fol­low­ers of Je­sus must not let any­thing ob­scure the cross or dis­tract from its re­al­ity.

Faith re­flects what you have been look­ing at. To ac­com­plish that, I fill my thoughts with words from God. I do this by read­ing and med­i­tat­ing on the Scrip­tures in the Holy Bi­ble. I mem­o­rize verses that seem per­ti­nent, that in­spire faith, that be­come prom­ises di­rectly from God to me.

Faith re­flects what you en­vi­sion for to­mor­row. God gave us an imag­i­na­tion for a rea­son. We’re made in his im­age. With our mind’s eye, we can pic­ture what can oc­cur in the fu­ture. If I have a prom­ise from the Lord about some­thing for my life, I can imag­ine that word be­ing ful­filled. God wants us to pray, to line up with his word, re­joice, and then re­ceive what we are ex­pect­ing.

Faith has self-talk. It re­peats what it has been lis­ten­ing to. You can pro­gram your faith with godly con­tent, or you can poi­son your faith by tun­ing in to neg­a­tive voices. Satan lured Eve to doubt God with a ques­tion, “Did God say that?” On the other hand, you can feed your faith. You can make it stronger by lis­ten­ing to faith-filled words. I refuse to take in crit­i­cal, skep­ti­cal ideas that plant fear or sow doubt. In­stead, I lis­ten to praise mu­sic, scripture songs, and hymns con­tain­ing lyrics of faith, hope, love, peace, and joy. I lis­ten to pod­casts to learn and grow in faith.

What you say re­veals what is in your heart. Out of the over­flow of your heart, speech flows out. Your words can be­tray you and trip you up. Or, your words can clar­ify your fo­cus and set­tle your course. One of the most pow­er­ful things any fol­lower of Je­sus can do is speak faith. Hear God’s words mixed with faith, then say them out loud. Let your ears hear your own voice stak­ing a claim by faith to what God has said. “Faith comes by hear­ing, and hear­ing by the word of Christ,” the Scrip­tures say. God’s voice in­spires faith. If you need faith, lis­ten to God!

Au­then­tic faith comes as a gift from the Lord who created us. Our Sav­ior knows how faith works. It’s a pow­er­ful force. Je­sus says to us, “If you can be­lieve, all things are pos­si­ble.”

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