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 (Manna 77: Integrating Faith with Life)
Manna 77 Editorial: Integrating Faith with Life
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by Shawn Chou

If someone asked us whether we professed any religion, we may instinctively reply, “I believe in God” or “I’m a Christian.” At such a reply, how often does the questioner demonstrate a desire to find out more about our faith?

A True Jesus Church member was once asked by her colleagues, “How are you always able to remain so joyful and caring toward others despite your busy workload? “ Her selflessness and diligence at the workplace had clearly impressed her colleagues and soon led to a conversation about how her faith enabled her to be so exemplary.

Jesus gave us this principle to live by, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven” (Mt 5:16). In order to shine for Jesus, we must integrate our faith into our lives, rather than separate the two. Faith is not something we practice only once a week. In this issue, our writers look at how our faith must be infused into every part and every moment of our lives.

The term “faith” sometimes feels too abstract to grasp, let alone manifest in our lives. But if we think about it, faith consists of three crucial elements: biblical knowledge, belief, and practical application of God’s will.

First, biblical knowledge forms the foundation of our faith—it allows us to know God and His will. Without a solid foundation, we will easily deviate from the truth and always remain a spiritual infant. We live in a world where the lines between right and wrong are increasingly blurred. Satan relentlessly tries to tempt us to cross the boundary between holiness and sin. To overcome these, we must be well-grounded and steadfast in God’s word. We must find time to read the Bible, listen to sermons, and study the Bible with others to better know God and His teachings.

However, if our faith only consists of biblical knowledge, we are like the scribes and Pharisees. We know the minutest statute and regulation but understand little of the intent behind God’s commands. We spend much time studying the Bible, but do not truly believe God’s word or use it to improve ourselves. The second critical element is thus belief in God’s truth. The author of the book of Hebrews warns us, “For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it” (Heb 4:2).

Finally, we must translate our Bible knowledge and belief into a walk worthy of our calling. We must apply God’s word to our daily life and live for the Lord; not just once a week in church, but at all times and wherever we are. For example, two writers share on how we can apply our faith in our workplaces and at home.

            “Therefore, whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock; and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.” (Mt 7:24–25)

This is often the hardest part of all; we need personal resolve and reliance on God’s Spirit to carry out God’s commands. Hence, prayer must be another pillar of our daily routines―we need to ask God to help us put our faith into action. If we can make our faith an integral part of our lives, we will see God working in our lives. Moreover, the more we trust and experience Him, the more we develop a solid foundation, able to withstand any circumstance.

In short, knowledge, belief, and action are the three core elements of faith that must coexist and reinforce each other. First, we learn about God, next we believe in Him, and ultimately, we become doers of His word. Then, the more we apply His word, the closer we draw to Him and understand Him. And the more we understand Him, the stronger our belief and trust in Him. When all these work together, our lives will be a song of faith that will touch those around us.

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Author: Shawn Chou