Fresh Hope – 19th October 2017

Matthew 9:27-30 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, calling out, ‘Have mercy on us, Son of David!’ When he had gone indoors, the blind men came to him, and he asked them, ‘Do you believe that I am able to do this?’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ they replied. Then he touched their eyes and said, ‘According to your faith let it be done to you’; and their sight was restored.

I want you to see something here today that will help shape the rest of your life. If you don’t get this, you will somehow miss out on some of the greatest adventures that God has got lined up for your future.

Jesus didn’t say according to MY power; He said according to YOUR faith.

God’s power is always ready and available, and yet we find that we have to activate that very power with our faith. He wants you and I to participate with Him otherwise He would randomly give it out all day without anyone asking.

Charles Spurgeon called it the rule of God’s kingdom; If you believe God a little, He will bless you a little. If you believe Him for much, He will bless you with much.

All of God is everywhere all of the time, yet His unlimited power is restricted and released ‘according to your faith’.

When I first read the Bible as a new Christian, I was blown away by this verse and decided that if it were really true then it would stand up to any test that I put it through. That very first test was when I was a student and really wanting to go to a Christian concert. It was a ticket only event and I was pretty much broke.

I managed to scrape just enough money to purchase a ticket at the concert hall, but when I arrived, to my dismay, there was nowhere to park except on a pay and display car park at the arena. There were huge signs everywhere that threatened heavy fines and wheel clamping should you fail to purchase a car park ticket.

My dilemma was to pay for a ticket OR pay to get into the concert, but I couldn’t do both. Then it came to me, that if God’s word were true then I had to trust Him one way or another. I decided to use my money to buy a car park ticket and then figure it out from there.

Without any money left in my pocket, but faith rising in my heart, I went and stood in a long line to get into the concert. This was easy I began to think, as there were at least 50 people in front of me; but as the line grew shorter and I got nearer the entrance, my faith started to get tested.

I was now almost at the entrance with only three people in front of me waiting to pay, so I let up a quick nervous prayer asking God whether to bail or stand my ground, but whatever needed to happen needed to happen fast.

I was just about to face the inevitable, when the security doors in front of us flew open and a guy came out, waving a ticket whilst shouting, ‘does anyone need a ticket to get in?’ – I simply reached out and took the ticket and as I did so, I was next in line and walked straight through.

Phew…that was close or was it? It happened ‘according to my faith’. When God saw me standing in line without money, I was making a faith statement that was more powerful than any prayer, and said to God, ‘I’m fully expecting you to turn up for me.’

That night my heart exploded with gratitude at the faithfulness of God. I have ever since then tried to live a life of simple faith and trust that God would turn up according to my faith in any and every situation.

As you start this brand new day, I challenge you to believe God by placing your trust in Him in much the same way. What are you expecting God to do today?

Remember: your expectation is God’s invitation.

Mark 11:24-25 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.’

Pastor Mark

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