So here it is – my first blog entry at Forward Progress. So many people have asked for it (or maybe my wife told me I should do it) so here goes.
Why forward progress?
I thought it was sort of a clever title for starters. But also I have spent some time over the last year and a half trying to define in my own mind what “faith” really is. The reason I struggle with the definition is because I think many of us think “faith” and “certainty” are synonymous. If that’s true, then my last year and a half has been completely un-faithful.
I’ve asked alot of questions, examined alot of my personal issues, and had difficult conversations with God over that time, and I’ve come to the conclusion that maybe faith isn’t necessarily about certainty. It’s about moving forward, one foot in front of the other, even when you’re not certain.
Part of the reason I think that comes from the word believe. The Greek and English understanding of that verb is about intellect. It’s about assenting to a certain set of facts. It’s about agreement. But that’s not what the Jewish understanding is.
In Hebrew, the word means something more like steadfastness. It seems that understanding is more about what we would call faithfulness, rather than simple intellectual agreement.
Don’t get me wrong – I do believe that faith involves the intellect. But I also believe that in many cases in life, it’s about moving forward. That’s what real trust is, it’s moving forward despite not having the answers for your questions.
The context for my understanding of faith comes largely because of my little boy’s diagnosis of leukemia in October of 2006. Our lives have changed so much in that time, and I’ve often asked the Lord what exactly He thought He was doing. And I still don’t know. But what I think He wants from us is to put one foot in front of the other, to keep walking, to keep moving forward with Jesus, even when we don’t know the answers. That’s faith. That demonstrates trust. It’s forward progress.
So there you go. That’s the name of the blog, and hopefully it’s a place we can reflect together about what it means to walk with Christ, putting one foot in front of the other.
And now you are welcome to trash my definition.