We are called to live by faith and not by sight. In today’s world, this is needed more than ever. Faith is so important that the Apostle Paul told the Galatians that “faith expressing itself through love” is the “only thing that counts.” America has a lot of issues right now. We have a President who is incredibly controversial, leaving both sides up in arms (especially the left) every other day with each move he makes. We have had severe hurricanes ransack through Texas and Florida (as well as our brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico) and then the absolutely awful shooting that took place in Las Vegas.
These things hurt. They are real. We feel the weight of them. We feel the pain of all of these things. We are living in very uncertain times. And because we are living in such uncertain times, faith is needed more than ever. But what kind of faith? Because that word gets thrown around a lot. Are we just talking about positivity or “good thoughts”? Let’s look to the father of faith himself to get some insight.
First off, let’s note that Abraham started off with a different name. His name was Abram. God promised Abram that through him, all the families of the earth would be blessed. And what kind of blessed? Are we talking “I just got a $1 raise at work” blessed? No, we are talking the full blessing of God which Paul taught was our full sonship as sons of God, righteous and loved by grace through faith (Galatians 3-4). So God promised Abram that the whole world would come into their inheritance of blessing as sons of God.
We all know the story, Abram’s wife Sarah was barren and didn’t have any children until old age. But here’s the kicker: God declared to Abram that He would make him a father of many nations. And then, unbelievably, God changed Abram’s name to “Abraham” and said, “I have made you the father of many nations (Genesis 17:5).” Get this right now: God renamed Abram, “Abraham” which meant “father of many nations” while his wife had still not had any sons! God used past tense language when He told Abraham, “I have made you the father of many nations.” God spoke from the place of the promise already being completed.
And this is just how the gospel works: The voice of God renames us “righteous” and “holy” and “blameless” and “perfect” through His grace poured out at the cross, and we accept it by faith even if it doesn’t seem true to the natural eye. This is the faith that pleases God. The gospel comes to us as a “finished work” since Christ was already “raised” from the dead and “seated” at the right hand of God (Notice the past tense verbs).
When God speaks, He speaks things into existence that previously did not exist. When He calls Abram, “Abraham,” He is releasing His power to rename someone and give them a whole new identity. He does the same with us on an individual basis. He calls us “altogether lovely, without flaws (Song of Songs 4:7).” It’s the message of God that comes to us through grace and is received by faith that lights up our hearts and sets us free to bear good fruit.
So this is where America comes into play. Are we “naming” America based on the chaos that we see or are we believing in God’s name for America? God’s name for America is “blessed.” And that’s not just because some white Conservatives say it’s blessed. It’s because God’s promise is for every nation to be blessed (Genesis 12:3). America is no better or worse than any other nation. But it is blessed in its own unique way.
Right now we need men and women of faith to rise up above the evil and hatred and lies coming from every angle. We need people to see America with eyes of faith, that can see the future of America as blessed and live from that perspective now. This faith must express itself in love towards individuals everywhere. In these dark times, this kind of faith is going to shine brighter than ever.
Seeing America with eyes of faith isn’t about ignoring the realities. And it doesn’t mean we can’t fight for justice. But it does mean that our spirit and heart will be aligned with His Spirit and heart. We won’t be just another voice yelling in a sea of a million voices. Instead, we will be a voice of peace, confidence, and love that will be noticeably different because it will be spoken in the faith of God’s promise. Even though we may have not yet birthed the “child” of blessing in this country, God renames us “blessed” ahead of time. Why? Because it’s a done deal.