Leap of Faith

by JR Vezain

What does it mean to take a leap of faith? Why is it important to take the leap? Throughout God’s word we read to trust in the Lord with all our hearts (Prov. 3:5-6), commit our ways to the Lord and trust in him (Ps. 37:4-5), and to trust in the Lord for he will bless us (Jer. 17:7). We read that without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6), with faith as small as a mustard seed we can move mountains (Matt. 17:20), and if we have faith and believe, anything is possible (Mark 9:23). But, what does it mean to take a real leap of faith, and why is it important?
Hebrews 11:1 says, “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Faith is having complete trust and confidence in something or someone. When we have faith, we have complete confidence that what we are hoping for we will receive. Whether it be that promotion you’ve been hoping for, that new house, that financial breakthrough, the healing on your sick relative, or those new shoes. Maybe its to lose weight, pass your final exams, your kids to make the right decisions on an overnight school trip, or like me, to one day walk again! Whatever it may be, if you want something that isn’t there yet, it first requires faith before it will come to fruition.
The definition of wish is to feel or express a strong desire or to hope for something this is not easily attainable. We can wish for all the things mentioned above but wishes easily run out of steam. When you wish for something, you strongly want it but when you don’t receive it or see it happen that wish gets buried and often forgotten. When we have faith, we have a strong confidence that it will happen. When we have faith, no matter how long it takes, no matter what obstacles try to stop it, faith holds strong. But, like a wish; faith without actions is useless.
“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone?” James 2:14. “So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.” James 2:17.
The first and most important thing about faith is this; it is what allows us to spend eternity with our father. Having faith in God is what gets us to heaven.
“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.” Romans 10:9-10
I wasn’t there when Jesus hung on the cross for my sins. I didn’t see him get mocked and spat on. I didn’t see with my own eyes the eternal sacrifice that God gave us so that he could spend eternity with us in his glory, but I’ve heard about it, read about it in the Bible, and choose to believe in my heart that these events took place for you and me alike. I have faith that Jesus came, died, and rose again for my salvation even though I didn’t see it. This faith gives me confidence that my best days are still in front of me. This faith gives me hope, that no matter what happens on this earth I will spend eternity in an even better place than I am now.
Once we have faith in Jesus, it unlocks a whole new strength for our desires. You see, God is the God of the supernatural. So, when we go to him in prayer with a request, if we have faith and believe that we will receive it, it will happen (Matt. 7:7). Putting our trust and faith in God keeps us believing when it takes longer than expected. It keeps us hoping when we don’t see it happening. It keeps us trying when our mind and body gets tired. Putting our hope and faith in God here in the natural, allows him to do the supernatural.
But, as I pointed out earlier, faith by itself is dead and useless. Without action, faith is not enough. You can have faith that you will lose fifty pounds, but if you keep sitting on the couch, watching tv and eating potato chips it probably won’t happen right? You can have faith that you will get that promotion, but if you keep showing up late, arguing with your coworkers, and slacking on your job tasks, it probably won’t happen. You can have faith that you’ll get that financial breakthrough, but without budgeting, money saving, and saying no to unnecessary purchases, it probably won’t happen. I can have faith that I will walk again, but without rehabbing, meditating, working out, trying to move my legs every day, never giving it up, and God’s divine miracle it probably won’t happen right? God can perform miracles. He is able to change our situation in the blink of an eye but he wants us to take a leap of faith so he can perform them for his glory.
When we put action to our faith, it allows God to intervene and bless us. When you pray that God will help you shed those fifty pounds, start eating healthier and exercising, the weight comes off. When you pray for that promotion, start putting in more effort at your work, God sees that and will bless you for it. When you pray for a finical breakthrough, get a job, start saving your money, living within your means, and letting God direct your spending habits, you will have money in your bank account. When I pray to walk again, keep working out, keep rehabbing, keep trying to move my legs, and never give up, I will walk again.
Joshua 3 tells us the story of the Israelites crossing the Jordan River. Moses had led them out of Egypt towards the land that God had promised them. They had been wandering through the wilderness for forty years. Just imagine it, a guy tells them he is going to lead them out of slavery to a land filled with “milk and honey”, and forty years later they haven’t reached it yet. I’m sure there was plenty of doubt among the group. I’m sure they were physically tired and mentally exhausted. I’m sure there were plenty of them that thought the whole thing was a hoax and that they were just on a life long scenic journey. Then, he dies, and the next guy takes over and tells them the same thing. I’m sure plenty of them said “yea right”. I’m sure plenty thought “This guy is a whack job just like the last. Why are we still following along?” But, because of good leadership, faith in God, and taking a step of faith, they cross the Jordan River into the promised land.
In verse 7 and 8 we read, “The Lord told Joshua,” Today I will begin to make you a great leader in the eyes of all the Israelites. They will know that I am with you, just as I was with Moses. Give this command to the priests who carry the Ark of the Covenant: ‘When you reach the banks of the Jordan River, take a few steps into the river and stop there.’”
Verse 13 tells us “The priests will carry the Ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth. As soon as their feet touch the water, the flow of water will be cut off upstream, and the river will stand up like a wall.”
Verse 15-17 says “It was the harvest season, and the Jordan was overflowing its banks. But as soon as the feet of the priests who were carrying the Ark touched the water at the river’s edge, the water above that point began backing up a great distance away at a town called Adam, which is near Zarethan. And the water below that point flowed on to the Dead Sea until the riverbed was dry. Then all the people crossed over near the town of Jericho. Meanwhile, the priests who were carrying the Ark of the Lord’s Covenant stood on dry ground in the middle of the riverbed as the people passed by. They waited there until the whole nation of Israel had crossed the Jordan on dry ground.”
This act of courage, leadership and faith allowed over a million people to cross the river on dry ground. It allowed them to reach the promise God had for their lives. Their leap of faith allowed them into the promised land. We see the people react to God calling them to take a step of faith. To take a few steps into the river and stop there. When God lays something on your heart, he’s calling you to action and to be patient. He’s calling you to act and let him do his work. Maybe he has a plan to affect more people than just you. Don’t get in a hurry. Don’t rush it. Take the step and wait on him.
Then, we see that when we take the step, he has a plan and will do the supernatural. When we get our feet wet, he can perform his miracles. Even when the river is flooding. Even when it looks like there is no way. Even when it seems humanly crazy, when we take that step and remain patient, God will do what only he can do. First, we must have the courage to believe and have faith. Then, we must take the leap of faith and put our faith into action. Trust in God’s timing. Trust in God’s plan. Have faith and get your feet wet!

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