Faith is lesson-learned…the product of experience. Faith is relational…it is not something that comes automatically. The ability to build and sustain faith in something or someone is not innate…it is derived and maintained through repetitive positive experience…not through empty claims like the nineteenth century traveling salesman peddling snake-oil…not through unrealistic, subtly deceptive half-truths like “your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil” (Gen. 3:5).
The biblical narrative stories of faith have storyline plots containing suspense and risk of failure because faith in God is not a sure thing while we are in the middle of a faith journey whose final outcome is still in doubt and undecided.
This is by God’s purposeful intention. God composed the adventures of faith recorded in the Bible. God ingeniously built into these storylines the gaps, intervals, and distance of suspense and risk to create the environment for faith to actualize and grow.
Because God lives in a timeless existence…the creation of faith-journeys for us is not a test-tube experiment for God. Adventures of faith composed by God for biblical times in the past and for modern times now…are premeditated and pre-planned long before they “hit the ground running.”
We live within the dimension of time precisely so that we can have the suspense and risk of actualizing genuine and lasting faith in God…because faith within personal relationships is one of the key functional components.
Adventures of faith spread-out over time…having real suspense and the risk of success or failure…creates the singularly unique opportunity to have a personal relationship with God based on mutual faith and trust…gained through lessons-learned.
This is why scripture says that without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6)…because without risk-filled and suspenseful faith lived-out within an adventure of faith…we cannot get to personally know God.
This is why a lot of what is out there within worldly conventional normalcy and thinking is aimed at distracting people from entering in at the narrow gate of Matthew 7:13-14…enticing people to “gain the whole world, and lose their own soul” (Mk. 8:36).
When we enter into God-composed adventures of faith having challenging gaps of suspense and risk built into the scenario…from where we are now to where we will eventually end up…God is giving us the gift of Himself…the best compliment and validation another person can give us in terms of personal relationships…His time, energy, and an investment in our growth as persons.
This is the heart of the matter…the issue at stake…within our current battle between light and darkness…good and evil…belief and unbelief…out in the world and going on internally within every Spirit-born Christian today.