Our weekly look at spiritual markers in Colossians 2:6-7 has brought us this far:
“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith. . . ”
You have received salvation through Jesus Christ . . . you can walk with God.
God has firmly rooted you . . . you are strong and steady in Jesus.
You are being built up in Him . . . it’s a continual process.
Now, what does it mean for God to establish us in our faith? In this verse that phrase means that we are confirmed in our faith; our faith is a sure thing. It’s not just a sure thing for today, but it will remain true into eternity (1 Cor. 1:8).
Great! Now we can just close the Bible on that one and live free knowing we are established in our faith, right?
Is it just me, or does anyone else have a hard time transferring the Truth of God’s Word into every day life? If I know that I’m established in my faith . . . why do I still struggle with doubt and fear?
When I see a sign on the side of a building that says “Established 1992,” I certainly don’t doubt their word for it. I don’t look up the record of the building to make sure it’s true. If I’ve done business there and know firsthand what they’ve been doing since 1992, I would be silly to doubt that they were established.
Isn’t that what God is saying about our faith too? I get so worried when I don’t feel something . . . or I’m not comfortable . . . or I’m not challenged in my faith. Then I doubt and become fearful. Yet, in reality, the greatest testimony to my faith is my very own life. I can see that God has built into my life . . . I can see the business He’s been doing in and through me.
God says “remember” what’s happened in your life of faith.
Remember how you’ve changed and grown.
Remember all the ways He’s been faithful to you . . .
and you’ve responded by sticking with it.
Sometimes I think my problem isn’t so much a lack of faith but a lack of memory. And since my memory isn’t improving with age, I’ve tried a few things to compensate. Maybe they’ll be of help to you.
- Write it down. Write down verses that speak to you . . . write down thoughts and feelings about God at key times in your life . . . write your questions and doubts.
- After you write . . . Review. Keep going over those verses, pray them back to God. Read through your old journals once in a while. Review those key moments in life.
- For those things you are worried you’ve already lost to time . . . pray to remember. I’ve had God revive old memories in the most wonderful ways, and they’ve led to new growth and change. They’ve shown me crossroad moments in life when God was there. I didn’t see Him at the time, but now I do. God isn’t limited by time, and He gives us wonderful memories when we ask.
A few years ago, when one of my boys was just beginning to learn to write, I gave him a stack of post-it notes. So, he would write me little messages, or draw pictures and leave them where I could find them. They cheered me up so much that I began to keep them, and tuck them away in books or drawers to discover later.
Just the other day, I ran across this one again, “I love you mom. I hope you had a good day.” When I see that note, I remember the day it was written. I REALLY needed to be encouraged to have a good day. I was emotionally and physically worn out, and God gave me a little boy’s note to cheer me up.
Remembering and looking back over the years shows me how God has established my faith. He has been so gentle and kind in the smallest details of my life.
Ps. 86:15-17 reminds us of how God establishes us:
“But you, O God, are both tender and kind, not easily angered, immense in love, and you never, never quit. So look me in the eye and show kindness, give your servant the strength to go on, save your dear, dear child! Make a show of how much you love me so the bullies who hate me will stand there slack-jawed, as you, God, gently and powerfully put me back on my feet.”
Pause for Reflection:
How have doubts caused you to live fearful rather than free in Jesus?
What notes has God written and posted in your life to tell you of His love?
How has God established your faith? – it’s a personal story and one that God wants you to live and know, so you can truly live free.