Drinking from the Fire Hose!

Hebrews 11:32-35a

32 And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets: 33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. 35 Women received their dead raised to life again:
Have you seen the pattern? By faith Abel, by faith Enoch, by faith Noah, by faith, by faith….I think the writer of Hebrews is trying to tell us something! Notice that each one of these heroes of faith did not just say “I Believe”. That belief led them to action! This is what James is talking about when he says “shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.” (James 2:18b) Faith is more than just belief in God – it is the motivating force that moves us to action as we follow Christ!
In our text today its almost like we are drinking from the fire hose! We have enjoyed bite sized examples of faith up until now. But in these verses he gives us the rest of the cake in one bite! He mentions man after man, deed after deed…it is almost overwhelming! I don’t know about you, but the first thought that comes to my mind is “how can I even compare to this!” These are giants in the faith who watched God do the amazing in their lives… and then there is me. A country preacher in the middle of a bunch of peach orchards in Crawford county. Surely I could never measure up to these people! Am I the only one that feels like this sometimes?
Want some encouragement? Go back and read these folks stories in the Old Testament. Yes these were men and women of faith, but they were also weak humans who had moments of failures in their lives too! You and I are more like them than we know! Moses murdered and ran! Samson’s pride led to his capture and death! David committed adultery and murder! While they saw God do awesome things, they were still broken, sinful people desperately needing the Grace of God! How does that bring encouragement? If God can use these broken vessels to bring Him glory and show the world His power and grace, then he can use me too. If we will simply place our lives in His hands by faith and trust in Him, we will see that God is still in the business of the amazing!
Today as we ReFocus our hearts and minds on Christ let us determine by faith that we are His to use as a vessel to bring Him Glory. And here is the thing – the more broken we are before Him, the more aware we are of our need for His grace, the more He can do through us! 


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