A Look Back and Forward at Faith

I wrote this three years ago at the beginning of March.  I’m reminded of all the amazing things God has done in that time!  I have literally had hundred of doors open and the opportunity to speak to thousands of people, based on the faith steps included in this short letter to my church.  I thought I’d share this passion with you today.

Radical Faith:  Is There Any Other?
Pastor Doug Bursch

The Bible is a radical document.  If your read and believe it, it will mess up your whole life.  The word of the Lord will not serve your interests.  Scripture was written to advance God’s interests.  Consequently, a heavy dose of God’s word will turn your life upside down.

One of the main reasons we must weekly delve into the Word is that the Word has a way of turning our lives completely topsy turvy.  This world will dilute your spiritual vibrancy.  If you stray from God’s word, you may think you’re seeing color, but in fact you’re living in a world of muted grays.

Scientists have found that depression actually affects how people see the world.  Procedures have been done where electrodes were used to stimulate areas of the brain that seem to cause physiological depression.  One of the amazing outcomes of these procedures was many patients reported the electric stimulation actually changed the way they optically saw their world.  They used words like, “Suddenly I was seeing the world in color.”  Some mentioned that they didn’t realize that they were seeing life in a dull, almost black and white state, until the procedure suddenly revealed a world of bright colors.

So many of us live perpetually gray faith.  We accept the dim dullness of our life as normal.  I’m praying for some Holy Spirit electricity to flow through the masses.  You and I were created for vibrancy.  We have a calling that is far greater than the muted and the mundane.

This week I think I happened upon a little bit of electricity.  While reading God’s word, a spiritual spark fired within me.  That spark led to another spark, then another, then to “Jesus, what are you doing?  I sense your leading.  I see you clearer today than I have in months.  Suddenly there is color!  Vibrant glory.”

God has been leading me to a deep river of renewed faith.  Scriptures of faith are literally jumping off the page.  I hear the voice of the Lord within me, calling me to move out in faith, to pursue the dream, to take the hill, and follow God’s radical leading.

The following are just a few of the Scriptures that have been jumping off the page:

“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20)

“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.  By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise.  For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.” (Hebrews 11:8-10)

This week God has been fortifying me with his Scripture.  He has been reminding me of the radical reality of faith.

The Kingdom moves forward by faith!  There is no other way.  Faith is a belief in the certainty of God’s future.  Faith is hope in a tomorrow that has not yet come.  Faith moves forward on God’s strength, God’s provisions, God’s glory.  Faith partners with the divine, the heavenly, the miraculous, the greater than anything we can imagine or have ever seen.

Faith raises millions of dollars to advance God’s kingdom.  Faith pushes forward an eternal agenda that cuts against the grain of man’s temporal plans.  Faith starts with nothing but vision!

Faith starts with nothing but a fire in the belly!  Faith starts with the Spirit’s whisper.  Faith is a release of the divinely unexpected!  Faith is the gift that binds us with the plans of God.

Faith doesn’t just bring hope; faith is our only hope!  Marriages are restored through faith, cities are made clean through faith, nations are revived through faith.

Faith. . . Faith. . . Where have you gone?  What have we done with you?  Why did we abandon your ways.  Are you not pure enough?  Are you not precious enough?  Are you not perfect enough for our full embrace.  Faith. . .Faith. . .Why have we scorned you?  You are our hope.  Your are our future.  Your are our holy reward!

I’ve been thinking about dangerous faith of late.  Faith that moves in radical directions.  Faith that moves beyond city walls.  Faith that takes over the airwaves, the publishing houses, the places currently bound by a lack of faith.

Come, Lord Jesus.  Help me to dance a dance of faith.  Let me lean back and rest in your lead.  Twirl me, swing me, turn me towards your kingdom.  Teach me a new dance, teach me a new song, release your voice in me.  Free me from my fear.  Come to me, faith!  Make your home with me.  I will no longer forsake you.  I will embrace you with open arms.  I’ll love you, I’ll cherish you, I’ll let you run free in me.

Amen.

Pastor Doug Bursch March 2nd, 2008

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