In order to influence our family, friends, and colleagues, we must first combat the doubts and unbelief we have in our relationship with God. Then we can have the faith we need to make an impact on others from our own walk with God.
2 You yourselves know, dear brothers and sisters,[a] that our visit to you was not a failure. 2 You know how badly we had been treated at Philippi just before we came to you and how much we suffered there. Yet our God gave us the courage to declare his Good News to you boldly, in spite of great opposition. 3 So you can see we were not preaching with any deceit or impure motives or trickery.
4 For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts. 5 Never once did we try to win you with flattery, as you well know. And God is our witness that we were not pretending to be your friends just to get your money! 6 As for human praise, we have never sought it from you or anyone else.
1 Thessalonians 2:1-6 (NLT)
25 This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength.
26 Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. 27 Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful.
1 Corinthians 1:25-27 (NLT)
13 When the Council saw the boldness of Peter and John and could see that they were obviously uneducated non-professionals, they were amazed and realized what being with Jesus had done for them!
Acts 4:13 (TLB)
14 Then we will no longer be like children, forever changing our minds about what we believe because someone has told us something different or has cleverly lied to us and made the lie sound like the truth.15-16 Instead, we will lovingly follow the truth at all times—speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly —and so become more and more in every way like Christ who is the Head of his body, the Church. Under his direction, the whole body is fitted together perfectly, and each part in its own special way helps the other parts, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
Ephesians 4:14-16 (TLB)
16 Keep a close watch on how you live and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right for the sake of your own salvation and the salvation of those who hear you.
1 Timothy 4:16 (NLT)
What usually stops us from making a difference is our own unbelief, especially when we are trying to rely on our own skills, powers of persuasion, or personality. We can only make a difference with God, not by ourselves. By ourselves we are never good enough; your family might expect you to have a better job/boyfriend/girlfriend/house, your friends are more likeable/reliable/attractive, or your colleagues are more successful/smarter/faster.
There’s always going to be an area you feel deficient in, so relying on yourself isn’t enough to have the courage to speak up and make an impact. Only with God can we have the boldness Peter and John had because they had been with Jesus (Acts 4:13) and the faith that it takes to persevere in relationships (1 Thess. 2:2). It’s how we live our lives with God that makes the difference (1 Cor. 1:27, 1 Tim. 4:16).
Who are people you have stopped having faith for? And why? Look for biblical answers and promises that will help you have faith for the people in your life.
Prayer Idea: Pick one person in your life each day to pray through (James 5:16).
Read Hebrews 11 and 12. Take note of the different examples of faith and what you can learn from them. How can you imitate that faith? What sins stop you from believing and seeing things the way God sees them?