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First, I would like to thank all of my new friends who are now reading my blog, thanks for all of your questions, comments and general support! The results of the random drawing are in for the $25 iTunes giftcard giveaway and the winner is….(drum roll please)…Alana Nelson from the U.S. Alana is a Twitter friend and blog reader and I am thrilled she won the contest because she told me she has never won anything before. Well Alana, now you are the winner! Check out Alana on Twitter @ASimpleToken and check out her blog Fragrant Devotion.

Once again, congrats to Alana and I look forward to doing another contest soon!

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What you find is that the problem of faith lies in us, not God, and it all comes down to a level of trust. Society tells us today to trust no one, to look out for #1, to take care of me. Nowhere are we told to trust in God; not in society, not in our schools, not in our places of work and frighteningly not in our churches. You heard me correctly, our churches. The one place you would assume would be overflowing with faith and trust is the one place where most people see a pragmatic, religious atheism played out on a daily basis. An oxymoron to be sure, but truth nonetheless. How is it “religious atheism” you might ask? We confess our lives to God yet we live our lives as if He doesn’t exist. We say we have given our hearts and lives to Christ to be our “Lord and Savior” yet we treat Him as if he couldn’t change a lightbulb, that He has no ability to work powerfully in our lives. On Sunday we have “faith” but come Monday we forget that He exists.

We allow ourselves to be forced into faith. What do I mean by that? Think about this for a moment; when was the last time you exhibited faith when you weren’t in a crisis? Interesting thought, isn’t it? Unfortunately we have things backwards in life, we feel that we are capable of taking care of everything, shelter, provisions, money, health and medicine and only in those rare situations when we don’t have any control over the outcome are we forced into faith in God. He becomes our last resort, our last hope, the Hail-Mary pass at the end of the game instead of being the first choice…the only choice. So my question is this, is that faith? Or, does that equate to something close to hitting a panic button and hoping something favorable happens? If God has proven Himself to us (as I established in part 1), why does it require such effort to “have faith?” Could it be that our faith is built upon our own expectations and not God’s and ultimately the problem is with the “our faith” part instead of it being “His faith.” If we were to lay aside our incomplete trust and faith while fusing ourselves to the faith only given by God our dilemma would be resolved. An example from Scripture will help clarify the point.

While Jesus was teaching a crowd of 5,000 assembled to be healed and listen to the words of Christ. When it started getting late Jesus asked the disciples to feed the people and the disciples responded in unbelief, “we have only five loaves and two fish.” (Matt 14:17) Jesus used what the disciples had to feed the 5,000 and then some. What Jesus didn’t do was ask how the disciples would solve the situation, He acted, in a mighty way to show the disciples that nothing is impossible for God. Therefore, they had no reason to doubt God. Seems like a good lesson in learning faith, so Jesus gives the disciples another shot at it. In Matthew 15, Jesus has a crowd of 4,000 following him when the same problem arises, how do we feed these people? The disciples ask Jesus, “Where could we get enough bread…to feed such a crowd?” WAIT…what just happened? Jesus fed a larger crowd just weeks before and the disciples don’t have a clue on how to feed them…are the disciples that slow? Or a better question, are WE that slow?

The disciples became powerful in building the Kingdom once they were able to let go of their selfish motives, their pride, their lack of faith and when they started obeying God. Let’s stop treating God’s Word as a collection of bedtime stories and start realizing them for what they are…True Life! Faith comes from obedience, and the greatest part is that God is faithful to us even when we aren’t obedient. Faith isn’t hard, wanting to obey God daily becomes hard because we allow the world to pull on us in so many directions, but stand your ground Christian! We have a God who proves Himself to us everyday, so let us take the “problem of faith” and use it as the Creator intended it, as the power of faith!

Society today treats faith as if it were a four letter word, speak about faith in an open setting and you can be guaranteed to receive a few snarls, angry glances and perhaps even open rebuke. Faith has no place in our modern, technological age of science and empirical data. Most people regard faith as a hopeless mysticism of days gone by and many have nothing else to say during times of great loss or tragedy but “have faith.” The statement is made with good intentions, it is meant to function as a salve for the soul but then we realize that we don’t even know what it means. And so we say something that has no application to our lives and we realize the hypocrisy before the words even leave our lips, yet we speak them anyway. The problem of faith plagues everyone but is the problem with “faith” or does it lie with us?

An atheist will tell you that faith is simply a blind belief in something, usually fueled from emotion, lacking any logical basis and founded in a God which doesn’t exist making it all the more illogical. But the atheist, just as the believer has a level of faith in more things than they would like to admit. Take breathing as an example, I have faith that in the next few minutes I will still be able to breathe. Now I may know all the intricacies of how breathing works, how oxygen is transferred to my blood cells which fuel the organs of my body and how without breathing my physical body would terminate from lack of oxygen. All of these facts are wonderful but they do nothing to assist my body in breathing, I must act out in a level of faith and actually breathe in to make the system work. Now the skeptic would immediately interject “that’s not faith, that’s science” but science just like faith needs to be proven true, so as each breath keeps my body alive I can have faith to continue breathing. Take the process one step further, there is nothing to say that I should be breathing and there is a plethora of reasons why I should and could stop breathing, yet, do I actually doubt the breath I take as I write this? No. Why? Because each breath strengthens my faith that the next one will certainly arrive.

The same is true for one’s faith in God. We can have faith in God because of His powerful work in our lives every day. Each day, God more than proves himself to us, by sustaining the earth to spin, the sun to rise and for breath of life to enter my nostrils, and as each breath builds upon the next, my faith should be ever growing. Think back in your life, how many times has God rescued you, saved you, strengthened you, protected you and blessed you? I challenge you to take a few minutes and write down the many times God has worked in your life over the last week and prepare to be astounded. What you will find is that the problem of faith lies in us, not God.  (Check back shortly for the conclusion: The Problem of Faith Part 2)

In celebration of Stranger in the World’s birth into the blogosphere I am giving away one iTunes $25 gift card! Awesome! For the details please read below.

This promotion will run April 1st – April 15th. You can enter by any of the following;

1. Sign up to follow my blog.

2. Follow me on Twitter.

3. Re-Tweet me on Twitter, every Re-Tweet counts as an entry!

4. Link me to your blog (email me scantalupo@yahoo.com to notify me of the link).

The winner will be drawn randomly, so the more you enter the better your chances of winning!

That’s it, 4 easy ways to win a $25 iTunes gift card! Good luck and God Bless!

What’s Happening on Twitter

  • Sitting at #NVDMV for hours, even with an appointment, has me rethinking my theological beliefs on purgatory 🤔 1 week ago
  • Praying for all my friends in NC right now and to my peoples @DukeU stay safe! 1 month ago
  • I’m renaming all of my phone contacts with the names of Godzilla’s enemies. I’m still looking for a Jet Jaguar and a Biollante 😂 2 months ago
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