A Faith Expressed
This past week Grace Chapel celebrated its 20th anniversary. While thinking through the past twenty years and celebrating God’s work in and through us, something about our church and our people really jumps out at me—we are a group who humbly and actively has a faith expressed.
What do I mean by that?
I can look back and see our faith expressed in so many ways. Obedience to move from California to Middle Tennessee, prayer and patience during the early days, loving our community, expecting growth, sacrificial giving by our people, all-in commitment of our people, as well as a faithful history and hopeful future. In all of those things there was radical expressed faith.
Watchman Nee, speaking of active believers, wrote, “The unique place where faith is expressed is in their works. What we do expresses what we believe.”[i]
That’s so true of Grace Chapel. Our actions backed up what we believe. Faith expressed led to people coming to Jesus. Faith expressed led to people being discipled. Faith expressed led to a wonderful Christian school and so many changed lives. Wow.
We see a picture in Hebrews 11:4–31 of faith expressed. Here Paul lists faith heroes from the Old Testament whose lives were marked by expressed faith that led to faithful obedience to what God had called them to do. They are examples of faith expressed for us Christians and if we are to continue to grow and persevere, they show us the kind of faith we desperately need to hold onto.
Abel—offered a better sacrifice than did Cain (Genesis 4:2–16)
Enoch—was pleasing to God (Genesis 5:22–24
Noah—prepared an ark (Genesis 6:9–22)
Abraham—obeyed by going (Genesis 12:1–8; 23:4)
Sarah—was able to conceive (Genesis 17:15–21; 18:9_15; 21:1–7)
Abraham—offered up Isaac (Genesis 22:1–14
Isaac—blessed Jacob and Esau (Genesis 27:27–29; 39-40)
Jacob—blessed each of the sons of Joseph (Genesis 48:15–20)
Joseph—prophesied the exodus (Genesis 50:24–25)
Moses—hidden for three months (Exodus 2:1–2)
Moses—refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, left Egypt (Exodus 2:11-15); kept the Passover (Exodus 12:12–13, 21–30)
The Israelites—passed through the Red Sea (Exodus 14:21–29); caused the walls of Jericho to fall (Joshua 6:12–21).
Rahab—welcomed the spies in peace (Joshua 2:1–24; 6:17, 23–25)
A faith expressed dots the history of Grace Chapel and will continue to keep us focused on the future as, with God’s help and direction, we continue to equip people to be passionate servants of Jesus Christ through discipleship, worship, evangelism, serving and community.
[i] Watchman Nee, Fact, Faith and Experience, (Anaheim, CA: Living Stream Ministry, 1992), 65