by Kenneth Copeland
Have you ever opened a wrapped package and inside was another, smaller package, and then another, and another, until you finally found a gift in the last box? If so, why did you keep unwrapping when the first box held nothing but another box?
The answer is: You had faith. You had faith that if you kept at it, you would finally unwrap the real present.
When a child wakes up on Christmas morning, he tumbles out of bed and goes barreling down those stairs to find out what’s under the tree. The night before, there was nothing under the tree, but he knows with certainty that on Christmas Day, what he’s been asking for will show up!
These are examples of the kind of faith God is looking for in His people. Faith that doesn’t complicate things, but keeps them simple. The kind of faith that knows with certainty, whatever it’s believing for will happen.
When things look complicated, it can be very tough to exhibit that kind of faith. But, Jesus said the answer to any problem you come up against is really as simple as four little words— “Have faith in God” (Mark 11:22).
Leave it to Jesus to solve today’s complex problems with a scripture so simple even a child can understand it, and so broad it covers every possible situation.
“But Brother Copeland, what are we going to do about the economy?”
Have faith in God.
“What are we going to do about the government?”
Have faith in God.
“What are we going to do if countries around the world go bankrupt? What will we do if there’s a flu pandemic? What will we do if oil prices continue to skyrocket?”
Have faith in God.
“Oh, come on, that can’t be the answer to everything,” someone might argue. “Jesus said those words 2,000 years ago, and this world is in a bigger mess now than it was then.”
I know it. That’s what’s so great about Mark 11:22. The person who bases his life on it never has to change his lifestyle to suit the times, the economy or anything else.
Faith in God never changes because God never changes. He’s the same yesterday, today and forever!
Gloria and I can personally attest to it. We first started learning how to live by faith 50 years ago, and we haven’t looked back. I’m going to share with you in four steps what it took us years to learn, so you can start enjoying victory today and enjoy it every day!
1. Faith Hopes
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1, KJV).
What are you hoping for this Christmas season?
The bare minimum? Just what you need to eke by? Just enough to buy your family presents and pay your bills?
If faith is the substance of things hoped for, then the first thing you’ve got to do is start hoping for something better than what you’ve got now! We aren’t supposed to be the “ekers by,” we’re called to wear the victor’s crown. And it starts with believing for, hoping for and expecting MORE.
How do you know what to hope for? Look in The WORD of God. All of His promises, and there are many, are laid out for you to take hold of and hope for, expect, and see come to pass in your life.
2. Faith Acts
Faith is movement. It’s a mouth in motion. Here’s an example of what I mean.
Let’s say my body is being attacked with symptoms of sickness. Thousands of years ago, God spoke a promise about healing in Isaiah 53:5 and Galatians 3:13. These scriptures describe Jesus lifting the curse of sin, sickness and death from our lives.
Now, here I am with symptoms attacking my body. What do I do?
Remember, faith is what gives substance to what I hope for, and I’m hoping to be delivered from this sickness. So, now I need to make a draw on God’s WORD. I do this by speaking The WORD and then acting as though it is done. I speak from Isaiah 53:5:
“By His stripes, I am healed!”
Faith must act. The faith stored in our hearts must come out of our mouths. Otherwise it is dead and of no use. You put your faith into action with your words.
3. Faith Loves
Love isn’t just a feeling. It’s a living being. God is love—all that He is, all that He can do, all He ever was or will be. Without a revelation of the love of God, you’ll never have close fellowship with Him, and you’ll never walk in faith to the fullest extent.
Faith is dependent on receiving the love of God, and showing love to others. Jesus’ teaching on faith in Mark 11 begins with Him telling the disciples that they can speak to a mountain in faith and have whatever they said. Then, He continues in verse 25:
“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses” (NKJV).
Jesus is saying that faith is connected to love. First Corinthians 13:2-3 shows us how much:
“…if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.”
God wants us to walk in love because love never fails. Since the best is found in love, you and I must walk in love in order to receive God’s best.
4. Faith Waits
Anytime you find faith mentioned in the Bible, you’ll also find patience. Faith and patience are power twins. Together, they produce every time.
The definition of patience is “being constant” or “being the same way all the time.” If we want faith to produce, we must respond to our circumstances the same way every time—with The WORD of God.
Hebrews 6:12, NKJV, tells us that we are to “imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
That means, no matter what trial you’re facing, let patience have its perfect work, and avoid slipping into fear and doubt. Patience says, “I will not be moved by what I see or feel. I know God’s WORD is true!”
Grow Your Faith This Christmas
Those four steps are vital to living a life of faith. Just like when you opened that layered package, if you’re willing to put these four steps into practice, faith will bring forth treasure. Remember, this is a season that began with faith that God would deliver a Savior to His people. Those who were willing to hope, act, love and wait were the ones who saw it come to pass. You can put those principles to work in your life, too.
And remember…It doesn’t matter what you’re facing right now—you already have the answer that never changes:
Have faith in God!
Dare to Shine His Light on Your Faith!
- Write a letter to God, and let Him know what you are hoping for this Christmas. Search for one to three scriptures that back up your hope.
- Each day, act on your faith by speaking out loud God’s WORD concerning what you’re hoping for.
- Meditate on the love God has for you. Ask God for a deeper revelation of that love.
- Practice God’s love toward others by forgiving and staying out of strife.
- Exercise patience. When you feel yourself fearing or doubting, answers those fears out loud with The WORD of God.
- From now until Christmas, commit to a fast from speaking anything contrary to The WORD of God regarding your situation. That’s a tough one, but with God’s help, you can do it!
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