I saw her walk into the room and something seemed different. Even from a distance, I could tell she wasn’t the same as when I’d met her a year before. Something was different. Intrigued, I kept glancing over to see if I could figure out the difference. The year seemed to have taken a toll on her physically and she was having trouble getting around, but that wasn’t the change that caught my eye. No, something else was different…
I looked closer and saw she seemed more confident, surer of herself, more expectant. She knew more people in the room, even choosing a seat in the middle of the room, rather than sitting in the back. I wondered what had happened with her over the past year to bring about such a change.
Living By Faith Changes You Inside and Out
A year ago, she had come to the women’s conference at the urging a neighbor. She’d turned down numerous invitations to visit a church with her neighbor, but had agreed to go to the conference. She’d never gone to church, hadn’t grown up around people who believed in God, and wasn’t sure what this faith thing was all about. She didn’t know anyone in the room except her neighbor and stayed close by her side all weekend. I could see she was uncomfortable, yet interested.
I was one of the speakers that weekend and she’d come over to talk at the end of the conference. She wanted to tell me her story. She wanted to know more and was full of questions. Talking to her that afternoon was one of the joys of my weekend. God had clearly touched her heart that weekend and the door to her soul had cracked open.
Now, a year later, I looked expectantly for her and wanted to hear what God had done in her life.
A Visible Difference – A Visible Faith
The week after the conference the year before, she finally agreed to visit a church with her neighbor for the first time and soon began attending regularly. Not too long after that, she gave her life to Christ and was baptized. She’d come to the conference this year with other friends she’d made at church.
So, that was the difference I noticed. She had Jesus in her life. She’d been baptized in His living water and filled with the Holy Spirit.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16 NIV)
Living Your Faith so That Jesus Shines Through
What if we could all wear our faith so visibly that people around us took notice and could see that something was different?
What if living your faith drew others in and encouraged them to seek God too?
What if you could have such a visible faith that it changed your heart, attitude, and actions to give you more peace, strength, patience, compassion, and forgiveness?
What if this visible faith could help you face the trials of life with greater hope?
What if the world could see Jesus in you so visibly that the power of the Holy Spirit you received at your baptism was evident to everyone around you?
How to Have a Living Faith That Impacts the World
Faith is more than merely believing in God, more than going to church on Sundays, more than wearing a Bible verse on your t-shirt.
Faith begins with opening your heart to Jesus and believing in God. It is cultivated through your church and faith community. But, faith ultimately is a transformation of your heart, allowing God to be the potter and remold you, releasing control to follow God’s way.
Faith that shines through and impacts the world comes from a life fully submitted to God.
As you step into your faith, you first need to prepare your heart and allow God to begin his work of transformation, allowing God to purify your heart and soul.
Then, comes the hard work of inner change, learning to listen for God, confessing your sins and repenting of your old ways, and becoming grounded in God’s Word.
Finally, as your faith solidifies on the inside, you begin to live your faith on the outside. You begin discerning God’s call in your life and stepping into where he’s leading. You serve others, share your faith, and live by the Holy Spirit.
“When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.” ~ (Acts 4:13 NIV)
12 Essential Elements to Living Your Faith
How are you living your faith? How can the world see Jesus in you?
How can we keep connected to the Living Water of our baptism and keep our faith so fresh it’s visible?
Will you join me in exploring 12 essential elements to living your faith? Through this series, we’ll explore how to truly live by faith and allow Jesus’ light to be reflected in your life.
Preparing Your Heart:
Growing Faith From the Inside:
- Finding God’s Strength Through Stillness
- Peace Through Confession
- The Gift of Forgiveness
- Grounded in God’s Word
Living Faith On The Outside:
- Stepping Out Into God’s Call
- Sharing Your Faith
- Guided By The Holy Spirit
- Go and Serve, Make Disciples
Mary Geisen says
Thank you for sharing the testimony of this woman and for beginning a series on being a light for Christ. You are so good at putting together series and I know this one will be God- led and God-breathed. Hope you are doing well, my friend!
Thanks, Mary! I’m really excited about this series. It’s a companion to a curriculum I’m helping create and deliver as an adult Sunday school class this spring.
I’m glad I found your blog today through Testimony Tuesday. This sounds like a great series. There was a time when I particularly encountered God and something must have been visible as a result of it. For the next few days people would comment that something was different as soon as I spoke to them. The visibility of it faded after that though the change was lasting, but I agree there should be something noticeably different about us because of our faith. Look forward to reading more.
Jeanne Takenaka says
What a great post! I see our hearts were in similar places today. 🙂 I love the story you shared about the lady at the retreat. God does have ways of making His presence known. And how beautiful it is when it is in the transformation of a life!
I so appreciated this: What if we could have the kind of visible faith that drew others in and encouraged them to seek God too?” That’s my desire, and it’s hard for me to live out.
I’m your neighbor at Holly Barrett’s place today. 🙂
Forever Joyful says
Your post reminds me of the Scripture in James that says, “Faith without works is dead.” We need our faith to be visible to put God on display. I would also love you to display this piece with us at Literacy Musing Mondays. #LMMLinkup
What a beautiful testimony, Kathryn! How interesting that you sensed she was different. Sometimes I’ve been able to tell that a stranger I see in a public place is a Christian. It’s like you can just see the evidence of the Holy Spirit in them!
This looks like a wonderful series.
Marva | sunSPARKLEshine says
Thanks for sharing this, Kathryn. What a beautiful testimony of a life that was changed.
I’m already looking forward to the rest of the series.
Wishing you blessings!
What a beautiful testimony of God’s grace, love and mercy! Thank you for sharing this story! Visiting today from Truth &Grace! God Bless:)
Such a beautiful testimony. You have given us some very thought provoking questions, Kathryn. What if we all lived with a visible faith? Truly our faith would make a difference in the world around us. May God bless you as you pull this all together!
Excited for you in this Kathryn! Looking forward to more posts and encouragement!