This past week, I found myself confronted – or rather, affronted – by the true meaning of “faith.” In one incident, it was a friend who was not sure what it meant and the other, a darker incident. I have a family member whose mind & body is being ravished by an incurable disease. With the former, I was more easily able to help define what faith is, but for the latter, I was forced to come to the realization that faith when not implemented correctly, can become a delusion and a dangerous form of denial.
Stay with me, please. Many of us have grown up hearing that “faith without works is dead” (James 2:14-26). But WHAT does that really mean in this dimension – the human life? It means this: WORK=ACTION. Do you know of people who are always hollering about how God is going to do this for them, do that for them, but yet they are sitting at home eating or drinking their life away? Or, they are in financial ruins, borrowing money here and there, never paying it back to the lender? They suffer from obesity or any other “illness” that is treatable or curable or even manageable, yet they continue to do the things that will exacerbate the illness – hence, their demise?
You see, that is not positive works. The “work” that is required in order for God to move you into your blessing is praise, and praise comes in two forms: the verbal and the physical. How are you praising God – the universe? How are you showing Him that you are willing, open and available to receive his blessings? Sitting on your laurels professing to the world that God is going to heal you or bless you does not bring forth fruit/blessings. It is delusional and has one in a state of denial. And when we begin to operate in the realm of delusion and denial, we move away from the work – from God: from our purpose.
If you want “this” or “that” from God – the universe – you have got to not only speak it, but put in the work. You must give him PRAISE: work your faith. You want a job? Are you putting your resume out there? Are you networking with folks everyday? Are you hustling for the blessing? You want to be healed? Are you eating right, doing what your doctor advised? Are you also praying in earnest? But more importantly, are you passing along the knowledge that you have learned about your illness in order that you might also save another life?
If faith is the essence of things not seen, then if you wish to “see” it come to pass, God – the universe – needs to see you hunger after it: WORK=ACTION. Praise is work in action! As always, let’s keep one another in prayer, but let’s also help one another work in faith, not in delusion or denial.