Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him to help you do it and he will. Psalms 37:5, Living Bible
Have you ever asked God to do something or anything? Did you have the feeling in your heart that God had heard you even though what you asked for was still unseen? If you answer, “Yes!” you have just described faith. Faith in God is based on certain facts, historical facts–that give you confidence for the present and future. Because God told you that He would hear and answer prayer, you tried it. You prayed. You found that God kept His word and lived up to His end of the bargain. Then, upon the basis of God’s faithfulness in the past, you can believe God for your present need.
Faith has two elements or two parts: belief and trust. The first, belief, deals with knowledge–facts which you accept as being true. Belief is intellectual assent to truth. But trust, as the second element or the reverse side of belief, deals with action. It involves commitment to what you intellectually accept as truth.
Both elements are absolutely necessary. Notice, first of all, that believing in something or anything demands a knowledge of something. Suppose for the sake of illustration that a time machine ran backwards, and you found yourself in the world of Napoleon Bonaparte. Do you suppose you could convince him of the reality of the twenty-first century we have recently embarked on?
Suppose you walked into his home and said, “I just flew in from London, it took four hours by plane.” He might scratch his gray wig and look at you as though you had just escaped from the local asylum in Corsica. He might say, “Now just a minute, nobody flies these days except on a broom.” And again, “You say you flew in on a plane…hmmm, a plane is a carpenter’s tool. And this business of four hours, it takes six weeks by the fastest mode of transportation.” Undoubtedly he would consider you to be insane. But let’s reverse the analogy.
Suppose Napoleon were brought to life in our world. In a few hours I believe you could convince him of TV sets, and computers, jet aircraft, penicillin, automobiles, and even space travel. What is the difference? Obviously, when he could see in a firsthand manner, he would believe, at least theoretically. But believing is only part of faith, it is not complete until you believe something to the point of commitment. The moment that Napoleon believed in jet aircraft enough to board one, his faith would be complete.
When it comes to your faith in God, it is so very easy to have only belief in God. It is easy to believe that God exists, the vast majority of people believe in His existence today. Even believing that God loves man enough to send His Son does not mean that your faith is complete. But when you not only believe, but trust as well, you say, “My Lord and my God.”
When Charles Blondin, the great acrobat, was walking across Niagara Falls on a tight rope, he turned to the crowd and singled out a boy about 12 years old. “Son,” he said, “do you believe that I can wheel you across the falls?” “Sure, I do,” said the boy. “Well, then hop in,” responded Blondel. Nervously, the boy turned and moved away from the wheelbarrow. He believed it, but not to the point of trusting him with his life.
If your faith in God is to be complete, you must not only believe, but you must be willing to trust Him as well. When you face the Niagaras of life, you can be confident that He will not disappoint you and abandon you halfway across. God’s prescription is this: “Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him to help you do it and he will” (Psalms 37:5, LB). That’s true faith.
Resource reading: Hebrews 11:11-22.