intentional living – “a faith based life”
Disclaimer: Intentional Living is not meant to judge, persuade, condemn or change. It is merely a sharing of ideas, thoughts and decisions.
When the thought presented itself to begin this Intentional Living series, I immediately knew that my first post had to be about my FAITH. Every single decision I make as a woman, a wife, a mother, a friend, even a blogger, has pieces of my faith tied into it. My intentional living springs from my faith – it feeds everything in my life. And in turn, I am fed by it.
God so lovingly nudged me into this post, not once, not twice, but SEVERAL times over the past 2 years. To publicly share one’s faith can be a scary thing, especially on a blog where that isn’t necessarily the “theme”. It seems as though the world is going in so many different directions and choosing to be a Christian isn’t the norm. I’m called to be OBEDIENT. I’m called to share LIGHT. So as an act of obedience to Him, I’m handing over this platform willingly, publicly and intentionally today. This is a statement of my faith and a testimony of how much that faith rules my day-to-day life, thoughts and actions. In this sharing, my intent is not to exclude or judge anyone else, but simply to share what I personally believe to be true.
So what DO I believe?
- I am a Christian who believes in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
- I believe the Bible (Old and New Testament) to be the true, living word of God, applicable yesterday, today and tomorrow.
- I believe that Jesus is my personal savior and that by His blood on the cross, I’ve been provided redemption from my sins.
- I believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, died on the cross, was resurrected three days later and now resides at God’s right hand.
- I believe that we are called to have a PERSONAL relationship with God through daily prayers and conversations.
- I believe in abiding by the 10 commandments and when I go against God’s word, I’ve sinned.
- I believe that to receive God’s grace, I can neither DO enough or BE enough. It’s simply given to me. It’s all HIM and it’s a gift that I’m ever grateful for.
A little bit about my walk with the Lord –> I grew up in a Christian household and I was saved when I was 11 years old. I’ve had years when I was close to God and many years when I wanted nothing more than to hide from Him. The thing about God is that He never, ever moves away from us – we move from Him. I’d say that it wasn’t until I had children that I really grew to KNOW God, to grasp the depth of His love for me and to fully grow into an adult relationship with my Abba (or Father).
How do I apply these beliefs to my every day life?
- I regularly attend church (non-denominational). Travis is the worship leader and I sing on the worship team with him.
- I regularly read my Bible. Side note: It wasn’t until 3 years ago that I finally read the entire Bible from cover to cover (using this plan, which I hope to talk more about come January. Would anyone be interested in a 90-day reading plan?)
- I talk to God several times a day, through prayer or just seeing something I’m thankful for and thanking Him for it.
- I read a daily devotional (currently Jesus Calling).
- I put God first in all of my decisions, whether it be where we send our money, how I treat my husband (Eph. 5:22), how I raise and discipline my children (Matt. 19:14, Proverbs 13:24), and how I treat my neighbor (Matt. 19:19, John 13:34-35). In most of these endeavors, I often fall short.
Now listen, because this may very well be the MOST important takeaway from this entire post. The list above are things I DO. But doing them does not make me a better Christian, more pious, more likely to be “saved” or anything to boast about. They are simply ways that I try to draw closer to God.
A works-based faith plan will never work BECAUSE GOD HAS ALREADY DONE ALL THE WORK FOR ME (Ephesians 2:8-10)
When we place value on our OWN efforts, we fail to see WHO God really is. We can never be enough or do enough for Him. He doesn’t require that. All He asks is that we seek and follow. To put the World (possessions, lust, money, hierarchy, etc) aside and follow His path. That’s it – so simple. How freeing?!!?
So what about YOU?
Maybe you have an awesome relationship with God. Maybe you’re an atheist. Maybe you were raised in the church and have fallen away as an adult. Maybe you feel like there’s something more for you but you don’t know quite how to get there.
I can’t convict you about your life and your faith. All I can do is share what God’s done for me in MY life.
I write product reviews for companies all the time for this blog. I *think* you guys trust me to be truthful when I like or dislike something – heck, you might even go out and buy that product if I said it’s a good one. I’m telling you today….
PLEASE know that there is a great God who loves you desperately, who sent His son FOR YOU, who fights for your well-being and will never forsake you.
A God who knew you and named you in your mother’s womb.
A God who is constantly trying to get your attention if you’ll just slow down and look.
It’s all written and explained in the Bible. Some of it makes no scientific sense, but some of what makes faith so real and amazing is the actual FAITH it takes to believe in something you cannot see. And actually, when I think about it, I see God in SO many things. My children, my relationships, nature, answered prayers and even UNanswered prayers!
My faith is something I’ll never deny.
And it’s something worth sharing. Intentionally. And with passion.
P.S. If you’d like to share YOUR faith story, please write a post and leave the link in the comments! I’d love to read it!
P.S.S. If you’re looking for a place to start when it comes to Christianity, here are some books Travis and I truly love:
- The Bible (obviously) – I typically read the NIV.
- Staci & John Eldredge’s Captivating
- Francis Chan’s Crazy Love
- Brent Curtis & John Eldredge’s The Sacred Romance
- David Platt’s Radical