"Without FAITH it is impossible to please God"
Want to be sure you are pleasing the God of the universe today? Exercise your faith!
Having had the tremendous privilege of being around people of faith my entire life, I can certainly understand what it means to exercise faith...and in the process please our Heavenly Father. You may ask, "What does that look like?"...or..."How can I exercise faith?". Great questions! The beauty of walking in relationship with Jesus is that He will never ask us to do something without providing a way to get it done. The key to obedience is being able to understand His desires, and then to obey them. How do we know? Does God speak in our ear? Not usually. Then how??
God's plan for us almost always includes a healthy dose of Scripture. How do we know how to act as a believer? We are told very clearly in the Bible. How do we know we are acting in faith and thus pleasing God? We are careful to read our Bible and then align our lives to the principles and commands we see there.
Yes, there are times when the Holy Spirit gives us a nudge in a certain direction. He might ask us to go do something for someone. He might impress upon us the need to be more giving with our time/treasure/ or talent. He might put people in our path that clearly need His love and care. BUT, in the times when He isn't nudging us forward, do we just sit and wait for the next bump? No, it is in those time...normal every day times...that we simply obey the Bible, pray to God to open our eyes and hearts to what He would have us do and see, and then go about our daily life viewing life through a lens of biblical obedience vs our normal human experience.
What does that look like? Usually the opposite of our first human thought or reaction. When we are tempted to turn away, turn toward. When we would usually keep our hands in our pocket, give generously. When we would normally stand quietly in the back of the crowd, stand up and volunteer. When we would love to be critical and gossip, speak words of forgiveness, compassion, and restoration. In short, act like you would if Jesus were standing next to you and you had nothing to fear. Wait...He is living right here inside of us...and we don't have anything to fear! And that is FAITH.
J. Mark Hollingsworth