Active Faith

Active Faith

Do you have an active faith or a passive faith? I would describe someone with a passive faith as one who believes that something they want to happen can happen, but then never takes action regarding that belief. For example; let’s say that you believe that God can lead you to a better job, but you never really act on that belief by (A) praying earnestly and expectantly about it, and (B) actively look for the job you say you want.

Hebrews 11:1 defines faith as being confident in what you hope for, and sure about what you do not see. The definition of hope is to desire with expectation of obtainment. To expect with confidence. The “sure about what you don’t see” part has to do with God. Meaning that this thing that you want, or want to happen, requires a power beyond yourself. You need supernatural help.

To have an active faith is to take action regarding the things you say you want, or want to happen. It’s not passive, it’s aggressive. It’s not weak, it’s strong. It’s not think about it, it’s do something about it.

When reading the Gospels, what jumps off the page concerning many of the miracles Jesus performed, is the aggressive action and belief demonstrated by the individual who wanted the miracle to happen. In Matthew 8-9, for example, we see no fewer than six examples of individuals who stepped out in faith: the leper who alone approached Jesus, the centurion with the paralyzed servant, the paralytic and his friends, the ruler whose daughter was ill, and the hemorrhaging women, and the two blind men.

It’s one thing to want something to happen and even believe that God can make it happen. That’s passive faith. It’s something altogether different to trust God with the desires of your heart so much that you actively pursue what you hope for, believing that God can and will make it happen. That’s active faith.

More often than not, I’m like the man who brought his son possessed by a spirit to Jesus, saying, “If you can do anything, please help.” To which Jesus responds, “If you can? Everything is possible for one who believes.” Called up short for his passive faith, the father than exclaims, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1