When we moved here we saw a bird that we’d never seen before. I finally found out it’s a nuthatch. They were very skittish and elusive and I would rarely see one and as soon as I did it would fly away. Now, after a few months they come to the window of Diane’s ‘Beach Room” and eat while we’re right there just a few feet away. It didn’t happen overnight, but little by little they have shown they are no longer afraid.
For some people, living by faith also happens incrementally as they carefully wade into the shallow end of the pool. For others, it’s more like a sudden ‘drop your nets and follow’ that results in a dive into the deep end. Both take courage. For someone who was afraid of the water, putting their feet in the shallow end would be as big a step as others who dive in the deep end. And then to stick with the same analogy, sometimes we enter the water not knowing how deep it is.
Hebrews 10:38 says, “…my righteous ones will live by faith. But I will take no pleasure in anyone who turns away.” Living by faith takes courage because it requires us to try things we’ve never tried, go places we’ve never been, and requires us to risk. Bill Easum says in A Second Resurrection that faith flies in the face of the status quo; Spontaneous movements of the Holy Spirit require faith. And the courage that gives us the faith by which we live is a courage and a faith that only Jesus can give us. Faith and courage in anything else is futile. But nothing can overcome the faith and courage we receive in and through Jesus Christ.
And like the nuthatch has figured out, when we can overcome that fear, and find the courage to live by faith – it’s definitely worth it.