19 Oct (un)Shakeable Faith
Like you possibly do, I tend to hold pillars of faith and virtue in high regard. Whether Paul the Apostle, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., or even modern mentors like Steve Jobs, Dale Partridge, Bob Goff, or whoever it may be for you, we sit here standing at the finish line in awe of the accomplishments of these people.
Here’s what we don’t see: The Journey. We love our stars, we idolize our mentors, but long before they’re spotlighted in your favorite magazine, blog, or movie, they’re finding their way, living their struggles, and writing their story.
And I LOVE that!
That means, (wait for it), you are in the middle of your story! You’re not at the finish line, you and I are smack dab, perfectly right where we need to be. And to be honest, I’m glad we don’t start at the finish line. I’m glad people can’t look at me and see a finished product. I’m so grateful we get to live out each day, living, listening, loving, and learning from the lessons we encounter.
I don’t need to be strong, I need to be in progress. That’s what Love Recklessly is… It’s the beauty in the chaos, the process of loving others and stepping back from ourselves and into a life of purpose. I don’t want unshakeable faith… I want a shakeable faith, one that is always tested. From trials to opportunities to setbacks, it’s all shaking up the way we approach the reality of who we are in light of who God is. Here are 4 ways we shake up our faith:
You don’t know what you believe till you get out there and have your worldview challenged. Meet new people, give to the needy. Lend your time, talents, and treasures to perfect strangers. Go on a spontaneous trip. Go a day without your cell phone and take in the energy of the world around you. Seriously.
Be intentional about the lives of others. Ask questions. Find out what peoples’ back stories are. Where do they come from? What do they love to do? What’s their story? You’ll find out so much from this. They’re human, they’re different than you, and most of all, you need to love that person because these encounters are divine appointments. You’ll become vulnerable from these encounters, but that’s the point, it’s no longer “just you and Jesus”… it’s you, Jesus, and the rest of the people He created.
That homeless guy. That moody lady. That dirty child. That person with a disability you don’t understand. Mark Driscoll calls these people “Image Bearers” and it shakes me to my core. These people bear the image of God, yet we treat them like objects. Stop seeing them as objects, start seeing them as preciously, fearfully, wonderfully made people deserving of your respect and reckless love. Start doing it and watch it shake you.
Take all these encounters and begin every thought with the reality that you don’t have it all together. And that’s fine. What did you learn about your faith from stepping up, stepping out, and caring for those you wouldn’t normally care for?
I think too often, we like a watered down, good-enough version of our faith. We like having an ambiguous faith that can get us out of a bind, but not necessarily disrupt our daily lives. I’m not sure that’s how God designed a relationship to be. It has ups and downs, twists and turns, and is meant to constantly examined and re-examined. And none of that is bad. Sometimes you’ll have doubts, and sometimes you’ll know without a doubt that you’re serving a greater purpose, but never will you ever need to worry about having it together.
Love Recklessly isn’t about the finish line. I’m still in the race trying to figure out if I’ll ever make it. I want you to run your race alongside me. I want to encourage you to endure, while you help correct my form. We’re in this together. For better or for worse, let’s shake up our faith and let iron sharpen iron and finish strong.
You ever hit a point where you held yourself hostage to this image of strength you tried to portray? How did you overcome that? What advice do you have for those who are dealing with this? Comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts!