Establish Faith

Faith development is not linear or sequential. It is a lifelong process of becoming your true self in Christ and often involves lots of twists and turns. God is the one doing the formational work in you through his Spirit in the realm of your heart. Your part is to be responsive and intentional.

It is important to start with a “first things first” mentality as we grow as followers of Jesus. There is nothing more important in this walk with the Lord than solidifying in our hearts the fact that we have been saved by the grace of God alone. Through Jesus’ sacrifice, we are cleansed/forgiven from both our sins and from the failures in our past. This is the stage where we develop our personal relationship with Jesus. We come to know in our hearts 1 John 4:9 that, “God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him.”

While our personal salvation has a specific beginning, deepening our faith is a work that will last a lifetime. It is important to consistently take time to reflect on “how great a salvation” we have in Jesus. Reflecting on his redemption will only spur us on to deepen our commitment to his will and purposes. One of the primary catalysts for deepening that relationship is to begin reading your Bible every day.

Form Character

The next stage in developing a person into a faithful follower of Jesus is to begin a long consistent process of forming your character to reflect Christ’s character. Consider the prayer that Paul prayed for the church of Philippi in Philippians Chapter 1:9-10 “I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return.”  We have come to know that our lives are no longer our own, and we therefore reflect the love of God that is within us. This means that we choose to love rather than hate, we speak truth as opposed to lies, we show kindness and mercy rather than aggravation and frustration. We actively demonstrate our love to our family and seek to live holy, healthy lives.

This type of transformation cannot be accomplished in isolation; we need other believers to walk with us and encourage us to be transformed to emulate Jesus’ message and mission. This means we are active participants in a discipleship community (Life Group, Iron Men, Koinonia, etc.) and every day we are choosing to read our Bible, journal and pray. During this consistent time in God’s Word, we start receiving personal convictions for how we are to live out this life of faith.

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Live Missionally

In this stage of the journey, you become more aware of God’s heart both for our neighbors and the world. Your faith moves to a place where you are deeply concerned about meeting the needs of others. In this stage you begin to understand the message of Ephesians 2:10, “For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.” We are consequently motivated to use the ways we have been blessed to be a blessing to others. We come to know it is essential for us to be investing our time/talent/treasures to distribute the love of God both locally and globally. We tithe consistently and then choose to give generously beyond that! We begin actively reflecting deeply on the scriptures and come to an understanding we are called to be generous, freely giving our lives away for God’s Kingdom.

Serve Locally Serve Globally

Influence Others

Finally, as we deepen our relationship with God, we come to a revelation that all of the wisdom, teaching, instruction the Lord has taught us has a greater purpose than just for ourselves. We are awakened to the fact this experience, insight and love is meant to be given away. We are called to influence others towards this way of life. The Bible insightfully instructs us, “For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Galatians 5:13-14)

Faith Development



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