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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Contagious Faith?

Sometimes faith is like a whirlwind. It grabs you and takes you on a life-changing ride. It grows bigger and bigger until suddenly it hurls you into a faith-in-action adventure, and your life is never the same.

Or, faith is like standing in quicksand with the muck pulling you down, your hands flailing, and just when your chin touches the wet sand, someone pulls you up and sets you on solid ground. You weep and shout out thankfulness, and your faith grows by leaps and bounds.

Then, again, faith can be like a melody building and building inside of you. Until finally, you burst out with lyrics straight from your heart. And everyone looks at you, amazed.

I googled "faith" and got 166,000,000 sites. Pretty impressive. I thought I'd narrow the field, so I entered "faith in action" and got 83,900,000. Then I tried "Contagious faith", although not as popular it still had 3,530,000. So why add one more blog on faith?

My heart is stirred over the idea of "contagious" faith. Not a boring faith. Not a passive faith. But a contagious faith.

Have you seen someone on fire with faith in God? Her face glows. Her smile is huge. Her excitement is beyond this world. When she speaks, I draw in closer and listen to every single word she says, because I don't want to miss anything. She has something I want, I need—the love of Jesus and a huge faith bursting out all over her. It's real. I can feel my faith growing too. Next to her, I'm the flower in the rain, soaking it up. Changing. Becoming. Believing.

To me, this is contagious faith.

I love what Mirriam-Webster's says about "contagious": communicable by contact. Oh, happy day. I can come in contact with a person saturated in faith, and that zest and glory can jump on me! Watch out world!

What if our faith is like a bubble around us? What if, when we bump into someone (figuratively), by osmosis their faith seeps into us. And likewise.

Paul said "I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong—that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith." (Romans 1:12) Love, love, love the "mutually encouraged by each other's faith" part. When someone full of faith enters my bubble, I become strengthened, encouraged, built up. On the other hand, we've all been around someone with a sourpuss attitude, and that eventually creeps over to my side too—like a virus. We absolutely affect each other! Whether by faith or something else.

How did the girl capture such moving faith? George Bannister says, "Faith is defined in our lives when we are facing the hard decisions and fiery trials of life." Maybe so. Or, like in verse seventeen of Romans one, maybe it's more about "The righteous will live by faith." Live by faith!!! It's what we need to be eating and drinking. What we should be confessing and speaking about. Life in Jesus. The love of God the father. Our faith in the savior of the world.

It's not religiosity. It's not spouting woes or trivialities. Faith is vibrant, passionate, a total belief in the One who lives for us. It's walking . . . well, in faith, every day like it's brand new. Experiencing joy in Him, even in sorrow. It's saying "I believe" even while standing in sinking sand. It's shouting "glory to God" when you might not feel like it. And it's a miracle. Jesus mentioned a mustard seed kind of faith. If only we had that we could move mountains. Just imagine!

"The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love." Gal 5:6

Contagious faith? Let it soak into me. Let it change me. I want that kind of faith!

How about you?

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