Most of the students at The Way of Life Bible Institute and at New Canaan Baptist Church in Richmond, Virgina and other Christians around the word can quote the definition of faith according to Hebrews 11:1.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
How many Christians really live by that definition?
Yes, faith is the substance of things hoped for and surely it is the evidence of things not seen, but when the going gets tough we tend to forget what faith really is. Faith is not limited to quoting scriptures. You must embrace full-hearted faith. What does that mean? It means to believe three ways:
- With your mind
- With yor emotions
- With your will
Then, and only then will the inner workings of your faith be in operation.
- The Mind Test
Be realistic about what you are believing God for. Everything you believe God for must be based on some promise or principle in the Bible. You must have God’s word on what you are believing Him for. If God didn’t say you can have it, then it is a waste of time to think He will give it to you. Confirm what you believe God for by seeing if He promised it to you in the first place. Make sure you can answer the question: What do I base my request on? It should be based on God’s promise.
- The Emotional Test
Your emotions must be involved in your faith. What is the highest Christian emotion? It is love, of course. Faith should be motivated by love (Galatians 5:6). The highest object of your love should be God. Therefore, whatever you are believing God for must be something for which God will get the glory. Ask yourself if you want this thing for selfish reasons or do you want it to help others and to bring glory to God. Make sure you can answer the question: Why do I want it? It should be to bring glory to God.
- The Will Test
There is ALWAYS something you must do in order to express your faith. It is senseless to want something and just sit waiting for it to happen on its own. You MUST give God something to work with. You MUST participate in your own blessings. Your will MUST be involved in your believing. There should always be an expression of faith. Before you expect God to answer your request, ask yourself: How do I express my will? You must do SOMETHING to express your faith.
In summary, all three of the above must be in operation for effective faith.