We all understand the concept of the word “faith”. We hear it many times in scripture, we use it in prayers, we hear it in quotes, pretty much everywhere we turn we hear the word faith used in one-way, shape or form. But have we really thought about what IS faith? Recently a friend of mine asked me the question, “Sandra, what is faith to you? How would you define it in the simplest terms?” To my surprise…I was stuck! I could understand what it was, I could think of concepts of faith (like trust and belief), but to actually define it was apparently different story. Needless to say, I sat with that question for quite sometime. I knew it had something to do with trusting God, with going into the unknown and not fully understood, but I also felt like there was more to it.
Scott Hahn provides great definitions in the Catholic Bible Dictionary by referring to Hebrews 1:11: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen”, and to Saint Thomas Aquinas in his Summa theologiae: “Faith is the act of the intellect when it assents to diving truth under the influence of the will moved by God through grace” (Summa theologiae II.II q2.a9). Those were still to broad and general definitions for me. I wanted to discover a more personal definition; what did faith mean to me?
It’s amazing how the Holy Spirit will sometimes just give you those eureka or light bulb moments. Out of nowhere you’ll get this thought or idea and you can’t even pinpoint how that came to you, but it makes perfect sense and it’s the answer you were looking for.
One evening I was sitting and doing my night prayers and reflections, and I get this thought just burst into my head during a moment of silence: “Faith is a journey. It’s a journey through uncharted waters and unexplored paths with a single light leading you, which is Christ.” DING DING DING! That was it! Faith wasn’t just an abstract term, it was something I lived and acted on everyday. It was my journey. I need all those concepts of faith, like trust, knowledge, belief and of course, grace, but it wasn’t just a stagnant term for me. It is something that is always moving, always growing in me. Christ is our light. He is like that single candle in a dark room that is placed in front of us. We can’t see the whole room and it’s surroundings, but we can see enough in the perimeter in order to take one step. He moves His light forward and we are now able to take the next step, and then the next. That process, that journey, that act of taking each step…that is faith!
I encourage you to take a moment with that same question that was given to me: “What is faith to you? How would you define it?” Sit with the Holy Spirit and allow your heart to be open to His answer. It will amaze you what kind of light bulb moment He will give you!
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