You probably don’t remember the first time you tasted chocolate, do you? The first piece of chocolate to touch your lips probably came from your grandma, your Sunday School teacher or the nice lady at the bank when you were barely out of diapers.
Where you got it isn’t really all that important. Why you ate it...that’s what matters,
Think about it…chocolate isn’t the prettiest thing to look at. It’s a little slab of brown stuff with lines and words on it, or a small cylinder-shaped piece of brown goo (aka the Tootsie Roll®). In all actuality chocolate doesn’t look very appetizing at all.
So…why did you eat it when it was offered to you? I know! I know! You ate it because you trusted the person who gave it to you. When they told you how good it would be you believed them. But then what happened...after the first bite? Why did you take the next bite…and the next (and the countless ones after that)?
You kept eating because the first bite was everything you were told it would be and because you expected each bite afterwards to be the same. Do you see what happened, though? After that initial bite of chocolate, instead of trusting the person who gave it to you, your faith was now in the chocolate itself-to always taste like…well, like chocolate!
Faith in God is like eating chocolate. The first time you purposefully trusted God (put your faith in him), it was most likely because someone told you to. Your parents or youth leaders or the preacher at your church. Or maybe you were reading your Bible and decided to take verses like Psalm 37:5-6 and Mark 11:22-24 out for a spin. Either way it was done because you trusted someone else's advice. But when you saw and experienced God’s faithfulness first-hand, that changed. After that first 'bite' of faith your faith came from YOUR experience and interaction with God. YOU knew for yourself that God is really there and personally interested in you!
Knowing faith is real doesn’t always make it easy, though, does it? Esther was afraid to have faith. But with Mordecai’s encouragement, her faith saved the Israelite nation from annihilation (Esther 4:15-16). Faith is what allowed Peter to step out of the boat onto the water, and what allowed Paul to be bold for Christ no matter where he was, who he was with or what condition he was in.
You probably won’t ever be royalty or find yourself walking on water. But having faith in God will put you where you need to be when you need to be there. And when your faith is your own, because you’ve experienced it over and over again, your life is going to be better than if you had an unlimited supply of chocolate to eat. That's not to say your life will be perfect or trouble-free. Faith isn’t a guarantee against problems and even painful experiences. But when you are faithful to God and have faith in him, you will see that nothing is bigger, better, or more important than your faith and relationship with God.
Be salt and light,