The Risk-taker's little Secret
I love risk.
The bible has a lot to say about faith – infact without faith it is impossible to please God. In modern Christian circles these days there are many definitions of faith – a lot of which conjure up in our imaginations us having to almost psyche ourselves up to stand on this energy consuming action of faith. We can be forgiven for thinking faith is a big insurmountable mountain where we just have to cold hard will, will, will ourselves to believe, bravely working and forcing ourselves up to a place where we can finally say, “I got faith!”. Sorry to say it, but living a life this way, after a few years, you're just going to get tired and bored and give up. That view of faith is hard work.
In fact, the other day I was speaking to a group of students about walls between us and God. One of the walls one student had was an invisible wall between her and God called “faith”. She had been taught you've got to have this kind of conjured up, brave, use all your will power to believe type faith to be in God's presence. She felt she did not have this 'level' of 'faith', therefore she was excluded from God's presence! What baloney! The very thing that is to release us into the place of access into His presence (Eph 3:12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence) was, because of faulty definition, the very same thing that was keeping her from accessing His presence!
When you begin to see God for who He truly is – the most wonderful person, hugely in love with you, ready to act, faithful in all His ways, easily moved by your heart and your prayers, the greatest Father that has ever existed and ever will exist. You begin to see His character for who He is – plainly displayed to all the world in the person of Jesus Christ. You begin the journey of “knowing”, and I mean, really knowing God and He proves Himself wonderful to you. Then you cannot help to begin to trust Him. As you spend time with Him and hear His words spoken over your life, the fire of passion and love He is always showering over you, the love in His words and the visions He gives you time and time again. Then trust begins to build from you towards Him. Trust is more of a yielding, more of a surrendering and a letting go to the one whom you realize is more trustworthy than you. Our English word 'trust', because of faulty definition in modern Christian circles is now closer to the bible word that many of our translations translate 'faith'. We've ruined the word faith and made it out to be some kind of forcing and bending and work of our will to have to believe God. No, it's simple trust in His character and nature – it's yielding to that. 'Faith' actually is more a dropping back into the arms of our God, trusting in Him to catch you. It's not hard. It's easy – and it's wonderful.
On this basis, because we trust, the natural outworking of that is risk. Trust is the root, risk is the branches and miracles are just some of the fruit. Abiding in Him is through trust, the natural overflow of this is we are prepared to take incredible risk, and out over the chicken-line of risk is where almost all the miracle stories take place. If I was just looking at the risk – some of these heroes of our faith like John G Lake, Smith Wigglesworth etc – if I was just to look at the level of outward manifestation of risk they took, then again I could be forgiven for freaking out and thinking that kind of risk is way too frightening for me. That level of risk is too wide a gap for me personally to jump. But if I saw the fact that they had met with God, developed a living relationship with Him, and saw His wonderful, faithful nature and had simple, effortless trust in Him for who He is. Then I would not see the risk as some huge, frightening faith leap I need to take, but a simple overflow, almost like a byproduct of this wonderful trusting in God.
Here's a brief testimony to illustrate:
“A month ago our Bethel team was in Kerikeri ministering in a combined church meeting.
One group of two on our team were dancing and shouting out, “who needs healing?!” One man jumps up, joins in dancing and says “it's my back”. Nathan, a young man on the ministry team declares, “Jesus just healed your back! Check it out!”. The guy bends over and checks his back out and yells out “I’m healed!!” and they all start celebrating what Jesus had just done.
Nathan then explains it was his first time seeing someone get healed without even praying for him. Jesus was just too eager to heal his back, to wait for someone with a pretty prayer. Nathan took total risk by putting his trust in God, that He would come through and heal this guy even though there was full potential to be humiliated. God honoured Nathan and the risk he took on God, and got a response.”
I love risk, but I know where it comes from. Look to where it comes from, infact live in where it comes from and you'll see very soon that you'll be taking risk and seeing miracles beyond what you ever thought possible!