This is Part 3 in a series on Five Steps to Kick Start Your Faith to Move Forward.
Step 1 – Try Forgiving Someone (Cont)
After forgiveness, we must allow grace and mercy for ourselves as well as for others. Psalm 23:6 reads, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” Staying in forgiveness is part of dwelling in the house of the Lord. Practicing the lifestyle of forgiveness stretches our faith and propels us forward.
Step 2. Feelings Follow Decisions
When you’ve been stuck a long time, forward momentum can seem impossible. We can lack direction, energy and confidence. The first step is deciding to make a change. “Today I’m going to do something different.” It could be as simple as try a new church, study a book of the Bible I’ve never done an in depth study before, take a class, ready a Christian living book, serve in a soup kitchen, do a kind deed to a stranger, fast for 24 hours, or tithe one percent more than I did last year. Whatever the change is, make the decision and do it.
The key to moving forward with this action plan is being willing to act in spite of our feelings. Faith follows our actions, not our feelings. I can make a decision to get up one hour earlier to have a decent quite time and write more. I feel like doing this about 4 or 5 days and then I feel like sleeping in. It’s after I push myself and get up anyway, I usually feel so glad I did it. The flesh is going to want the easy way out at some point. It’s time to get determined and stay committed to our decision to do the next forward step of our faith. Our faith follows determination, and our feeling eventually come around.
The other area decisions matter is in the resolve not to quit. Sometimes the temptations to give up can be the toughest right before the victory point. Once our minds are made up, we stop talking about it, set our faces like flint and move toward the finish line.