Saturday, January 5, 2013

One Little Word for 2013: Believe


         With the hopeful fragrance of a new year upon us, many review our accomplishments and bad habits, in order to make plans and set goals.  We make resolutions to be kinder, stronger, healthier, and better.  And we want to accomplish these things with a flatter tummy and thinner thighs.
     For the last several years, I have changed from making a list of resolutions to choosing a word to frame my year.  My word has been a reminder to invite specific things into my life and to eliminate others.  Past words have been “Make room,” (Technically, that is two words, but I used it for two years.) 2011 was Kindle, and for 2012 my word was Dwell.
     Last Sunday, I just wasn’t sure which word I was going to chose for the year.  I felt a little impatient with myself.  I had a few words in mind, but I needed to think and pray it through.  Imagine my surprise when Pastor Mike announced his word for the year - Nevertheless!  That’s a great word.  I am looking forward to seeing where it takes him and our church family this year.  So following Mike’s lead, after our service, I hurried home and got to work.
     My word for 2013 comes from the best loved and most well known verses in the Bible.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.  John 3:16.
     My word for the year 2013 is believe.  Some form of the word “believe” appears over 320 times in the Bible.
Without faith it is impossible to please God, for he who comes to God must believe that He is...” ~ Hebrews 11:6
The Phillipian jailer asked Paul and Silas, “Sirs,what must I do to be saved?’  So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”  ~Acts 16:30-31
“Believe in the Lord your God, and you shall be established.”  ~2 Chronicles 20:20
     According to  to believe means:
to have confidence in the truth, the existence, or the reliability of something, although without absolute proof that one is right in doing so.
to have confidence or faith in the truth of something.
to give it credence.
to have a conviction that a person or thing is, has been or will be engaged in a given action or situation.
to entrust in something
to be persuaded of the thing to be believed
       I also looked believe up in the Strong’s Concordance.  The Greek word for “believe” used in John 3:16 means “to fully commit oneself to.”
     So John 3:16 says:  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever fully commits themselves to Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.”
     So I ask myself, if believe means to be fully committed, do I believe?  Like the father in Mark, my response is, I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!
     Believers walk by faith, not by sight. Believers trust in the Lord with all their heart and lean not to their own understanding.  Believers are fully committed.  Believers believe!

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