Nothing Artificial” “All Natural” is what it says on my peanut butter, my orange juice and the almond milk in my fridge, (Yikes the Almond milk is 2 weeks past the ‘use by’ date). A toothpaste and a deodorant or two are in the cupboard boasting the same status, “all natural”. Shoes in (my husband’s) closet have a label stating Genuine Leather – no man made materials.
What does it declare?
I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately. Immersing myself in reading and teaching of people who are genuine Christians and discovering those who are less so. Now, hang on. I am not judging here, but just trying to see what GENUINE faith yields. Exploring what a GENUINE relationship with Christ looks like in life and just this week in death. Pondering if my Faith is Genuine enough to withstand what God might call me to.
Is my heart GENUINE enough to lead? Is my relationship with Christ authentic enough? Am I the real deal? Could I be a counterfeit Christian?
One of blogs I’ve been following is Kara Tippets http://www.mundanefaithfulness.com/home/2015/3/22/homecoming which chronicles her journey and fight against breast cancer. It’s heart wrenching and faith challenging. She was the real deal in life and in this past Sunday…in death. She recently posted:
“I feel too young to be in this battle, but maybe I’m not in a battle at all. Maybe I’m on a journey, and the journey is more beautiful than any of us can comprehend. And if we did understand, we would hold very loosely to one another because I’m going to be with Jesus. There is grace that will seep into all the cracks and pained places when we don’t understand.”
Last year I walked a similar journey with a dear friend that ended last May just like Kara’s. Since then my blog has been mostly silent save for a few musings. During the hiatus I have been struggling with what Genuine Faith looks like and do I have it? Below are some journal thoughts
Am I pleasing Lord?
Jesus warned in Matthew 7:21. “Not everyone who says to Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.”
Will I be one of those let in?
I want the banner of my soul to read, Organic, Genuine All Natural, Nothing Added.
What characterizes a Genuine faith or an authentic heart for God?
To live a life dependent on Christ means we must be humble. We need to be “Christ Sufficient” not self sufficient. It’s not about us, if we are honest. Apart from Christ we can do nothing. Therefore anything we accomplish is because of GOD. Proverbs 25:9, “He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.”
Am I humble enough Lord?
The status of our heart depends on what it craves. “My soul thirsts for God, for the living God” (Psalm 42:2) I watched a movie where this verse was quoted: “Man does not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). Hunger for God’s Word is always a characteristic. Our cravings and the nourishment that quenches it speak volumes about the authenticity of what we allow to fill us up.
“What do I hunger for Lord?”
How do we get filled up? E. M. Bounds wrote, “What the Church needs today is not more or better machinery, not new organizations or more and novel methods, but men whom the Holy Ghost can use…men of prayer, men mighty in prayer.”
Are my heartfelt prayers real enough Lord?
After exploring what makes for authentic or genuine faith, I made a list for myself of things that could hinder it. What is the “man made” stuff that spoils the “organic” or “all natural” state of my faith?
Some of the artificial ingredients I found were:
- Distractions and rationalizations that keep me from prayer.
- Pride that wants to take credit for the things that work in my life.
- Giving in to unhealthy cravings or feel good gospel that in not in line with scripture.
- Filling up on worldly things to satisfy my hunger pangs.
- Uninspired prayer.
I am working toward a more authentic relationship with Christ which hopefully will result in a genuine faith.
Point to Ponder: What would the sign over your heart or the label on your faith read? Leave a comment below about what defines “Genuine” or “Authentic” faith for you.
Those who comment AND sign up on the email list (top right) will be considered for a drawing of a special Kissed by the Creator token that is 100% Natural. Totally Genuine and Nothing Artificially Added. Prizes will be awarded on April 15th!