A small girl stands at the end of a dock looking down at the surface of a lake. The water is dark, and she cannot see the bottom. She has no idea how deep it is, but she knows it’s over her head. Should she jump? She hesitates, then closes her eyes and propels herself outward.
Her grandfather catches her as soon as she touches the water and together they laugh. The grandfather places the girl back up on the dock. She asks, “Can I do it again?”
The girl is not afraid. She has faith in her grandfather. Her faith is strong enough to allow her to enjoy something that would normally terrify her—simply because he said it was OK. Faith has incredible power.
Webster’s Third New International Dictionary defines faith as “Something that is believed or adhered to with strong conviction.”
Faith is more than intellectual assent. It’s a conviction so strong a person is willing to act based solely on the word of another.
Faith in God is faith that takes Him at His Word. It’s believing what He says is true and then acting on this belief—even when there’s no actual proof.
Consider the Israelites when they were being pursued by the Egyptians. They were trapped against the shore of the Red Sea. They were afraid and had doubts about their future. But Moses spoke to them. He KNEW the Lord would deliver them. So they went on. They didn’t give up. They had faith.
The next time you’re at a lake or river, walk through it and don’t get wet. Just head right out into the water and walk across the bottom and come out dry. You can’t do it. You KNOW you can’t do it. Water doesn’t work that way. The Israelites also KNEW water doesn’t work that way. But in this one situation, they KNEW it would be different. They took God at His Word and didn’t hesitate. They had faith.
This is the kind of faith we should be teaching to our grandchildren. We should guide them to a knowledge of Scripture and then encourage them to take God at His Word. We should demonstrate that kind of faith in God in our own lives. And as part of the training, we should work to give them this kind of faith in us.
We should be so consistent with keeping our word to them that they can believe us, take us at our word and act on that belief—every time. When they learn they can have faith in our words, they will be more inclined to listen to what we have to say about God.