12 Ways we can Demonstrate Courageous Faith
In my last post, we showed that Jesus’ resurrection affects life today. We respond to him with courageous faith and see evidence of it in your lives and in those around you. According to Mark, here’s what courageous faith looks like.
- Group action. Just as a few bystanders saw a paralytic responding to Jesus, a group of people can step outside the safety of their lives and into the world of another person. (Mark 2) Courageous faith often involves groups of people working together to bring people to Jesus.
- Humility. The paralytic, the demon possessed daughter, and the synagogue ruler’s daughter all have something in common—they are children. Jesus addresses the paralytic as a child, and we need childlike dependency and humility. Self-righteous smugness and quick easy answers deter this kind of approach. (Mark 5, 7)
- Repentance. Courageous faith means leaving behind the old friendships, attitudes, and actions that we had under the old regime. Like Blind Bartimaus, we leave behind our cloak, our sources of income and security. (Mark 1, 10)
- Persistence. People with courageous faith don’t give up. When all hope seems lost, a synagogue ruler, a Gentile woman, and a bleeding woman do whatever it takes to find Jesus and trust in him. (Mark 5)
- Confession. We not only confess our faults, we confess our doubts. Lack of belief is only a barrier of faith when we try to keep it to ourselves. By confessing our doubts to Jesus, we are showing that we trust in him. (Mark 9)
- Surrender. We surrender to him as Lord, turning over our time, talents, resources, and anything that stands in the way of his reign in our lives. (Mark 10)
- Confession. We admit our unbeliefs. We name the things that we have done that contribute to our own downfall. Knowing that we can’t fix this ourselves, we realize that the only way that we can go forward is with Jesus in our lives. (Mark 9)
- Prayer. We groan with sighs too deep for words. We are able to hear God communicate to us through Jesus, his word, and each other, and we respond with our own attention to the presence of God. We grieve over the condition of our world, and we trust Jesus to drive out the demons. We pray, “Lord I believe; help my unbelief.” (Mark 9)
- Belief. Because unbelief is such a barrier to courageous faith, we keep on believing through our times of doubt. Belief is the persistent return to Jesus, confessing what we believe, and learning even more about him. (Mark 5, 9)
- Speaking. We will actually be able to share the gospel because we have now heard the gospel. Our tongues have been loosened, and we share it with others. (Mark 7)
- Service. Instead of looking for promotions, we look for the bottom of the ladder. We give our resources, sacrifice our time, andshare our lives for each other and for the world. (Mark 9, 10)
- Reconciliation. We build humble relationships with people different than us. We advocate for justice and show that “in Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek, male nor female, slave nor free; but we are all one in Christ.”
This summer, there was probably no greater demonstration of this faith than in the lives of the members of the Emmanuel AME Church. The family members of the victims of the shooting offered Dylann Roof the mercy of forgiveness in the courtroom. This kind of message is only possible because Jesus is already reigning in their lives.