Faith and trust are key elements in a life of faith, and if we want to become mature in Christ, we can’t ever let go of these things. The key to staying connected to Christ, to remaining in Christ, is to believe the promises of God. Paul says, ‘For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.’ (2 Cor 1:20) In Christ, it’s always ‘yes’ and ‘amen’, but we have a part to play too. Our part is to speak the ‘Amen’ to the glory of God. Our part is to agree with God, no matter what the visible signs around us say.

We only grow spiritually if we remain in Christ and keep on believing what He says over and above what we can see with our natural eyes or what our feelings tell us. We need to learn to speak out what God says over and above what we feel or think. It’s so easy to talk ourselves into defeat because we only talk about the negative. Instead, we have to speak out God’s word.

The voice of pragmatism is always there, urging us to follow alternative paths. Abraham listened to it and allowed himself to sleep with Hagar. David listened to it and stayed at home instead of going to war, following the lust of selfish longing and listening to the rationale offering excuses for normal human needs until he’d not only committed adultery but committed murder as well. We all listen to it to some extent. Pragmatism sounds so utterly convincing and reasonable and so much more sensible than climbing out of a boat and walking on water or taking one child’s packed lunch and feeding thousands of people with it. Faith requires us to ignore the temptation to play it safe and stay in our comfort zones and follow Christ wherever He goes. And He tends to go to places we’d rather He didn’t!

The challenge for each one of us is to believe God’s word over and above anything or anyone else. This is a hugely important spiritual battle, one that’s largely invisible to other people but which truly determines how we grow up in Christ. As Lauren Daigle sings, it involves fighting voices in our minds that say we’re not enough, that we will never measure up and means choosing to believe what God says about us rather than anything else, choosing to find our worth and identity in God, rather than in anything else. (‘You Say’) We practise every day believing God or believing the lies more times than perhaps we realise. If we are to grow in our connection to Jesus, then we must learn to believe His promises and rely on them. Absolutely nothing else will win the victory. Only as we speak the ‘Amen’ to the glory of God can we claim every promise God has made and live in the spiritual realm Christ died for us to enter.