Sometimes it’s not the mind-blowing miracles of Jesus that give us pause, awesome though they may be. Sometimes it’s what Jesus said while performing the mighty work that leaves us even more stunned.
Just before raising her brother, Lazarus, from the dead, Jesus reminded Martha, “If you believe, you will see God’s glory” (John 11:40). Implied in his statement is that the opposite is equally true: if you don’t believe, you will not see God’s glory.
When we fail to believe, it’s not just that we miss out on miraculous feats or the next level of sainthood. We don’t just fail to get our super-saint badge or the deed to a bigger mansion. It’s more serious than that. When we fail to believe fully in Christ, to live out what we believe to be true about him, we fall short of fully revealing the glory of God.
Our faithless story actually conceals God’s glory. We steal a little of it away when we fail to walk with abundant faith. [See my post What Makes Your Story Worth Telling. ]
Why should that be troubling? In his letter to the Romans, the Apostle Paul defined the essence of sin as to “fall short of God’s glory” (3:23). This is why Paul stated with such authority that “everything that isn’t based on faith is sin.” Our faithlessness conceals the glory of God both from us and from a hurting world around us, for it frustrates the very purpose for which we were created.
When we place great faith in our great God, we pull back the curtains to reveal more of his majesty. E. M. Bounds, one of my favorite authors, describes what happens when we fail to believe: “Great faith enables Christ to do great things. . . . We have hedged God in till we have little faith in his power. We have conditioned the exercise of his power till we have a little God, and little faith in a little god.”
When most of us think about God, we tend to project ourselves onto him. We put God in a box that would fit us at our best. That doesn’t inspire us with much hope, because we know our own limits pretty well.
But when we see him as he truly is, we see abundance personified. He isn’t just really rich and well connected. He is the connection, the source of all riches.
- “In God we live, move, and exist” (Acts 17:28) and “without the Word [God] nothing came into being” (John 1:3).
- “The Lord can do whatever he wants in heaven or on earth” (Psalm 135:6), and “nothing is impossible for God” (Luke 1:37).
- He “is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20), and “the Lord’s eyes scan the whole world to strengthen those who are committed to him with all their hearts” (2 Chronicles 16:9).
When our story is driven by our faith, we see that if the infinite, eternal, unchangeable God is for us, how could it possibly matter who or what is against us?
One thing is clear: the only story God’ll find pleasing is one lived by ongoing faith in the Son of God who loved you and gave himself for you. The same Son of God who invites us to participate in his mightiest work so we can fully reveal his majesty to all. Myr hope for living a life of lasting significance rests not on my story but on the story of Jesus Christ. Only when my story aligns with his can I know my story will be one worth telling. [ See my post To All Those Who Want Their Story to Matter. ]
When three friends faced a fiery furnace for refusing to bow to an idol, they spoke boldly because they knew no furnace was big enough to contain their God. Because they believed God could transform impossible to possible, they walked by faith—and revealed the majesty of God to a stunned royal audience (see Daniel 3).
Their story is worth telling because they lived an authentic life of abundant faith. What is your story revealing about your faith — or is your story stealing God’s glory?
I wrote my new book A Story Worth Telling as a field guide to help you live an authentic life of abundant faith.
It’s packed with practical helps, challenging thoughts, and real-life stories of people who stepped out before they knew how it would all turn out.
I’d like to give you a chapter that illustrates more of how your faith makes your story worth telling.
I’ll also let you know how to get faith-building resources valued at $284!