Make a declaration of your faith today, says Fr Alvan

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Make a declaration of your faith today, says Fr Alvan

What does faith mean? How do I know that I have faith in God?, asks Fr Alvan Ibeh in the latest of the Voice of Hope series.

Everything we do as Christians revolves around our faith in God and as the letter to the Hebrews pointed out, “without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).

What does faith mean? How do I know that I have faith in God? Is it only when all is well with me? Is it only when I am healthy and have not visited the hospital for a long time? Is it when I doing well in my business, and I have financial security? Is it when I feel God has always answered all my prayers?

The letter to the Hebrews defines faith as “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1) It is having an absolute trust and dependence on God even when in the physical realm, nothing is happening. One thing we need to know is that, often the physical battles we fight, whether sickness, financial problems, family crisis, etc, have been fought and won in the spiritual realm. This is the reason we still believe in the goodness of God, even when things have not gone the way we wanted. We do not see to believe; we believe to see, and this is what faith is all about. If we must touch God, we must touch Him with faith.

There are a lot of stories in the Bible, of those who touched Jesus with faith and their lives never remained the same again. Their story dramatically changed, and Jesus always said to them, “Your faith has healed you or made you whole.”

One of the stories that I like so much is the account of the woman with an issue of blood, who had the unusual name of Veronica, and may be found in the Gospel according to St Matthew (9:20-22), in St Mark’s Gospel (5:25-34), and also in St Luke’s Gospel (8:43-49).

Jesus turned around in the crowd and asked: Who touched my clothes? Mark 5:30.

This woman, as we are told, has not met Jesus anywhere before and has heard about him. She has taken her problem to so many doctors and other experts but all to no avail. According to Luke 8:43, this woman has “suffered for 12 years and has spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any”.

This means that everyone has given up on her and she has been asked to go and prepare for her death. With faith in the Jesus she has never met before, she said to herself, “if only I can touch the fringe of his clothes, I will be healed. It was at that moment she made that faith declaration that her healing in the spiritual realm took place and acting on that declaration brought about its physical manifestation.

Many come to church today, yet the question is, “how many of us have an absolute trust and dependence on God that no matter what happens to us in this life, we will stand firm and say, “it is either God or God.” There is no alternative. In this year, let us work towards trusting God with every detail of our lives without doubting His power working in and for us.

With faith, the woman touched Jesus and instantly received her healing. A problem of 12 years became a history with just a touch of faith. It does not matter how long you have been in that situation you are in now. It does not matter what news you have received. Just make that faith declaration today and believe that God is able and faithful and in His own time He will come through for you. Peace be with you.

I have received a lot of comments following my last article and it is always encouraging when this happens, and I appreciate you all. Can I also encourage you to keep spreading this message of hope to those you think desperately need it. We have all been called to carry this message of hope to all the nations however we can and not forget that Jesus has promised to be with us till the end of time (Matthew 28:20)

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