I love heights. I was always that kid at camp on things like ropes courses or zip lines that would giggle and smile the whole way through. And yet I realize that some people don’t like heights. In fact, I realize that some people really hate heights. I understand (sort of) that some people don’t have fun jumping off of platforms 50 feet in the air to try and catch a swinging bar. I know that some people don’t like being suspended with nothing between them and the ground except for a rope.
However, regardless of if heights are enjoyed during things like that, everyone’s outcome is the same: a harness holds you securely. Whether you fall while scared or fall while stoked, you are still going to be caught by your equipment. Often times at camps like this when you fall, the campers or staff below cheer you on. They cheer you on regardless of how excited you are. In fact, often times, they cheer you on even more if you’re terrified.
I think faith works a lot like heights. I think there are some people who just have a spiritual gifting of faith—that just love the wild adventure with Jesus and have no doubt in their mind that He will provide, protect, and satisfy. I think there are other people who struggle to grasp how a God they cannot see will come through when it looks impossible. And yet the Lord doesn’t honor our wild and unpredictable emotions. He blesses our decisions to follow Him despite them. He blesses simply our willingness to take steps when we can’t see the ground beneath us, not our ability to figure out what kind of ground will show up or how much ground will be there. Taking a step regardless of how scared or how confident you are that the ground is there is the whole point.
In history, and in the Old Testament, there was a time during which the Israelites were seen as a threat and over time, enslaved by the Egyptians. Eventually a Jewish man named Moses was called by God to set the Israelites free, and he approached the reigning pharaoh multiple times to ask for freedom for his people. Each time the pharaoh refused, so the Lord began to plague Egypt. After 9 plagues, the Lord threatened pharaoh with a final plague: the killing of all firstborn sons. However, the Lord provided an opportunity for safety by allowing families to sacrifice a lamb and put it’s blood on the doorposts and lintel of the house—all families that did so were “passed-over” and spared (Exodus 11-12).
What’s the point of telling you the Passover story? When I think of Passover, I think of all the Israelites sacrificing lambs in “full” faith, knowing that their God is Yahweh, the God of Jacob, and the God-of-Angel-Armies. But when I stop to think about it, my best guess is that there were a lot of Israelites who were terrified—who doubted that the blood was going to be enough. There may have been some Israelites who doubted the plague would come at all, who thought surely their God wouldn’t kill newborns. And yet, it didn’t matter how big or little their faith was. It didn’t matter if they believed 10% or 90% (although those with greater confidence may have slept better that night, I’ll give you that). However, the end result was the same for each and every household that stepped out in faith: Saving Grace.
I’ve done a handful of things over the course of my short life that people have told me required “big faith.” I’ve moved across oceans within days of notice, gifted vehicles, and turned down wild job promotions. Some of my “big faith” decisions I was excited about and had phenomenal confidence in. Some decisions I questioned, doubted, or cried over. Yet… I did all of them.
And regardless of how much “faith” it felt like I had in the decision, every single one of them was blessed. Each one of them I feel has been anointed with the same amount of grace and favor. Why? Because we only have to have faith like a mustard seed (Matthew 17:20). We aren’t given a faith scale. We aren’t told that faith like a mustard seed might move mountains but faith like a pomegranate seed will move planets. Faith comes simply from choosing to be obedient in the small decisions. It is a muscle built through obedience in the moments that carry maybe no faith at all.
Please Note: Unrelated but totally related… I’m also a huge fan of “The Blob.” If ya know, ya know.