I’m reading Steve Harvey’s recent book, JUMP. What a book! I’m only half way through and I already recommend it wholeheartedly. I want to do a review when I’m finished but I have to share a lesson that Steve mentioned. (You can read about JUMP on Amazon)
The overall theme of JUMP is when you get your opportunity to live your dream, take a leap of faith. In other words, JUMP! Like jumping off a diving board, you might be afraid, but you can trust that if God put your purpose in your heart, He will take care of you when you JUMP in faith.
Steve brought up a couple of Bible verses that really helped me understand this concept.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1)
Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone….For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (James 2:14,26).
It all starts with a dream… hope. We hope something will happen. We have a dream of a better life, or at least a different life.
Hope begins the process. It begins somewhere in our heart, or at least our head. Maybe someone spoke some encouragement to us or we just began to think of what we wanted. Or maybe God placed a burden in our hearts and it seemed so impossible, but we hoped it would come true.
What are you hoping for? What do you hope you will accomplish in your life? What do you hope will be different next year?
Maybe you hope to lose weight… or you hope to be in a good relationship… or you hope to grow closer to God… or you hope to stop that habit that is keeping you down. It all starts with hope.
Faith is where God comes in. We can have a lot of hope, but until we bring God into our hopes, it’s all lost. Faith connects our hopes with the Almighty God.
Paul reminds us that ‘Faith comes by hearing; and hearing by the Word of God’ (Romans 10:17). Hope has little substance. But when you have faith, you have an assurance that it will be done.
Faith encourages us that our hope something God wants to happen. It’s okay to let a hope go away if God is not in it. I’ve had many hopes that I thought God wanted. But as I continued talking with God about it, He began to change my hopes. But other times He strengthened my hope.
Faith in God will get you through bad news, impossible situations, and discouraging words. Faith will provide an unwavering assurance that God is able to accomplish more than we could ever ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). Hang on! Faith will strengthen you.
However, just because God wants my hopes to become real doesn’t mean they will happen. I can even have faith in God that my dreams will become reality, but they don’t happen. Has God failed? No. I have failed to work.
James emphasizes that ‘faith without works is dead.’ Many Christians use this concept only with our salvation. In other words, we are not saved by works, but our salvation produces works. A person who says they have faith, but doesn’t have faithful works, is a hypocrite.
But this also applies to our practical, living faith. If you have faith that God is going to change your environment, but you don’t do anything to clean up the neighborhood, it will stay in disrepair. If you have faith that God will get you that fulfilling job, but you don’t work to improve your employment skills or fill out job applications, I guarantee you’re going to keep getting loser jobs. In other words, you need to work your faith.
I think this is where most of us stand still. And this is where Steve Harvey gets the title to his book. Sometimes you know what you ought to do to get something accomplished, but you just freeze. You don’t take the initiative. You’re waiting till all the conditions are just right. NO! Just JUMP!
If God has given you those hopes, He will catch you. Your hopes and dreams may seem crazy. But if you have faith in God, and you know what you ought to do, there is no fear. JUMP!
Let me know how your JUMP goes….