Best of 2016: "Living the Fruit of the Spirit": Faithfulness

“Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassion fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

“Great is Thy Faithfulness” is one of those standard hymns we’ve all sung in church without really thinking about what the words mean. It wasn’t until recently, when I heard it sung beautifully by a soloist at a church in New York, that I heard the song, specifically the third stanza, with my spiritual ear. Great is Thy faithfulness. Great it Thy faithfulness. Morning by morning new mercies I see. All I have needed Thy hand hath provided. Great is they faithfulness  Lord unto me.

As I read the lyrics in my bulletin that day in church, I could not help but to ask myself what God’s faithfulness to me really meant.

In Greek, the word faithfulness means “pistis”. “Pistis” has multiple meanings including, “to have confidence in someone or something”, “to be reliable”, “to evoke fidelity and commitment”. These definitions lead us to believe that faithfulness is a cyclical process that involves (1) being confident in something or someone that has (2) proven itself to be reliable, which then (3) enables one to become committed to that something or someone. Our relationship with God is a perfect example of this. Time and time again, He proves Himself to be the most reliable source for all of our needs, which causes us to become confident in, and committed to, Him.

Confident You: Confidence is synonymous with faith, and confidence (faith) in God is the foundation of relationship with the Him, for “he that cometh to God must believe [H]e is” (Hebrews 11:6).  If you do not believe in God’s ability to be your provider, comforter, healer, and to meet your needs, then you fail to be confident (have faith) in Him. However, if you allow God to build your confidence (faith), then you will experience His faithfulness.

Reliable God: Once we have confidence (faith) in God, then we will experience his reliability (faithfulness) to us on multiple levels. This means He provides when our refrigerators are bare, He heals when the doctor’s prognosis is grim, He opens the door to a new career we thought was unattainable, He uses us to be a blessing to someone else, and so much more. Experiencing God on this level not only deepens relationship with Him, it creates a wealth of trust between you and God.

Forever Committed: There is nothing better than living in the spiritual “sweet spot”. That space when you are confident (have faith) in God, and know Him to be reliable (faithful) in all parts of your life, which allows you to commit (submit) to the will of God and allow Him to order your steps.  

What I’ve come to understand is that my mustard seed of faith opens the floodgate of God’s faithfulness to me. This means that all we have to do is believe and be obedient to what God asks us to do and He does the rest. When God says, “Abide in me”, then you spend time with him and he multiplies your harvest (John 15). When God says, “Come unto Me all ye that labor”, then you give him your burdens and rest (Matthew 11:28). When God says, “Pick up your mat and walk”, then you leave your fears, doubt, and double-mindedness behind in order to operate in your purpose (John 5:8). This spiritual call and response between you and God only works to increase your faith and trust in Him, God's faithfulness to you, and your willingness to share your testimony of faithfulness with others. 

Perhaps now is the time for you to activate your faith so you experience the fullness of God’s faithfulness in your life, for it is more than great.