John 6: 26 – 27, Jesus answered them and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him." NKJV
What an intriguing story. In it, we learn there’s a difference between someone who follows Jesus in order to get their desires met and someone who follows Him because they believe in Him as the Son of God. Isn’t it amazing how Jesus could discern so quickly the wrong motives of the people who had come out to see Him? Because Jesus was the Word of God incarnate, He knew what was in the hearts of men. Consequently, He was never moved by whether their actions toward Him were favorable or adversarial. The only power contained in a man’s heart that could move Jesus was faith.
It is crucial that believers in Christ understand what it means to be driven by desires versus being led by our faith in Jesus. One of the best indicators of true faith is having consistency in our walk with Christ, especially in times of lack. When a person is driven by desire, they can only see as far as the desire is being met. However, faith gives us the ability to see God as more than the provider of our needs and desires. He is our very life. Faith will cause a believer to hold on to God even when the bills aren’t getting paid, and there’s no food in the pantry. If the desire of a person is not provided for, then the strength of desire will fail and cause them to doubt the goodness of God. Ultimately, they will turn away from God and look for another way to meet their needs.
We’re told in Jeremiah that the man (or woman) who trusts in the Lord and places their hope in Him is BLESSED! Now wait just a minute. On the surface, that scripture sounds really inviting. However, if you dig deeper into it, you will find that trust is harder than you might have originally imagined. To trust in God means that you don’t see or have what you’re believing God for… yet. To place your hope in God doesn’t mean you see nor have what you are hoping in God to give you… yet. Nevertheless, if you don’t have or can’t see what you believe for, and you still trust in God, then you are blessed.
The writer of Hebrews tells us that God rewards those who DILIGENTLY seek Him. There are times during trials and seasons of disappointment when we must seek God diligently. In other words, in order to exercise true faith, we have to place self and its desires in submission to God’s will. Faith gives us the power to die to ourselves and the desires that could lead us away from Christ. Faith also gives us the victory to overcome this world and its pleasures so that we can live a life that pleases our heavenly Father. In the end, God will reward those who by faith die to self and endure steadfast to the end, knowing that He is faithful. Faith believes, and faith hopes in Christ.
Following Christ by faith,
Pastor Asa Dockery
Pastor Asa Dockery