“I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ.”
This past week our church packed over 50,000 meals in one hour to send to families around the world. Soccer teams and students, grandmothers and teenagers, men, women, children coming together to do more than just hear the Word of God on Sunday morning but to act on it.
In his letter to Philemon, Apphia, and Archippus, Paul commends them for their effective faith. He thanks God for the love they show not only to Jesus, but to all of God’s people. Paul prays that the sharing of their faith — a “go and make disciples” kind of faith — might become even more effective and powerful because of their accurate knowledge of the good things we receive in Christ.
Effective faith is more than just hearing and understanding the Word. Effective faith is more than just doing random of acts of kindness. Effective faith is combining what we know in our heads from the Word with what we know in our hearts about our personal relationship with Christ and doing something with it to serve all of God’s people.
We all have inside of us a craving for connection — a restless heart that can only find rest in God, as St. Augustine put it. But we’re also created to be in relationship with one another, showing that we are Christians by our love — because Christ first loved us. It’s in the ways we serve our neighbors, friends, family — the people God has placed in your life, in this season. It’s in the ways we love people we’ll never meet on the other side of the world. And as we take what we know and put it into action for the sake of Christ and not our own glory, we begin to understand even more about the good things we receive through the Father.
How can you walk in effective faith this week to love and serve where God has called you?