Faith & Hope

Partners and Friends,

I am glad you have joined us this week! In the last blog we ended the Five D’s of the devil. Today we are going to talk about faith and hope - the weapons we use against the D’s of the devil. I am excited! Champions are overcomers. Teams that learn how to overcome obstacles will go on to win the championship game, and champions live in the Glory Days. As a champion church, we are in our Glory Days right now. We have been given every weapon we need to defeat the devil and his game plan to destroy us and the Glory of God operating in our lives.

I heard a minister just recently say that faith is a force. I like that! A force is described as a strength and a power to make something happen. God, by the force of faith, created the universe. He created man by this same force of faith, and now we have the same force of faith dwelling inside of us. Remember, as we said in an earlier blog, God has given us all the measure of faith. Faith is a force that can work for us over the power of the enemy.

Not only is faith a force, it is a law. Romans 3:27 says, “by the law of faith…” Just as gravity is a law, so is faith. Gravity works, period. Faith works, period! If I stand at the top of my stairs and drop a ball, it is going to fall. It will be pulled down to the ground by gravity. It will not float around in the air when I drop it. Once put in motion, faith works on my behalf.

The Bible gives us a great definition of faith in Hebrews 11:1. It says that faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Not only do you see faith in action in this scripture, you see faith’s partner, hope. Hope defined is a confident expectation. Most of the time we look at hope as just holding on. Have you seen the meme of the kitten hanging from the tree branch with the caption underneath, “hanging in there”? That is not hope! Hope is a confidence that is expecting things to happen the way God said they will happen! Faith and hope combined can make a powerful team. Let’s look at it this way: faith is the firecracker in this situation, and hope is the thing that ignites faith. As I like to say it, faith is the firecracker and hope is the punk that lights the firecracker.

If you don’t have a confident expectation in God’s Word then you have no hope to light your faith.

When the devil sends the D’s of destruction your way, it is faith and hope that keep you looking to God for the answer instead of looking at the situation. Faith is the now-factor and hope will keep you standing in confident expectation. Just as we stated in earlier blogs, disappointment, dread, doubt, despair, etc. will come your way. You will feel these emotions at different times in your life, but remember, feeling these emotions does not mean you are out of faith. You will always have the measure of faith in you. It is just the plan of the enemy to move you out of faith. It is his plan to take the “punk of hope” (punk of confident expectation) out of your hand so you cannot light the firework of faith.  

The next time the devil sends disappointment your way, take out the punk of hope and firework of faith in response to his disappointment, and send the disappointment on its way.

-Coach Brim


Emalee HanveyComment
Distress, Despair, and Destruction

Hello Champions!

Today we are going to end the Five D’s of the devil with the dominos of distress, despair, and destruction. See, when we yield ourselves to disappointment, then to dread (fear), and then give into doubt; we open up the door to the dominos of distress, despair, and destruction. Most of us have come to a place in our lives that it seems like we are on a path to distress and despair. That despair looks like it is leading us into destruction. The devil has a way of taking disappointments, dread, doubt, distress, and despair and making it seem like we are headed for destruction.  

The definition of distress is pain or sufferings that affects the body. The definition of despair is to lose all hope. The definition of destruction is the state of being destroyed. A classic example of these three emotions is found in the story of David at Ziklag. David and his men had been out fighting a war. When he came home after the war, he found out that all the women and children had been captured by an army of very ruthless men that were known to kill everyone they ever took captive. David began experiencing the domino effect - disappointment, dread (fear), doubt, distress, despair; and he was quickly heading toward destruction. David had a choice, just as we all do. He could continue knocking dominos over, or he could rise up and overcome the situation. David was at the point that it seemed everything was lost. The Word says that “David was greatly distressed.” His men were getting ready to kill him, and the Word tells us that David “cried until he had no more tears.” He was definitely in a state of distress. He was most certainly feeling despair. He had lost all hope and was heading towards death and destruction. All the while, God was there waiting on David.

In the midst of all the emotions, God was there to help David.  Even in the middle of the distress, despair and glooming destruction, God is there. God is the same for us today. Even when we feel so distressed we don’t think we can go any further, God is there. The Word of God tells us that God will never leave us nor forsake us. David, wrapped up in all these emotions, took his eyes off of the situation and put his eyes on God. The Word says, “But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.” The word strengthened means to make stronger. David’s way of making himself stronger was not to look at all that was wrong but to turn himself to the Lord’s strength and focus on God. David chose to stir up the measure of faith that was on the inside of him. If David can do it, so can we.  

Choose today to strengthen yourself in the Lord! Focus on His ability, not on your inability.  Your inability will just bring about the domino effect, but His ability will put you on the victory side of your situation. Then you will be like David. In the middle of your storm, you will come out victorious and highly blessed! Choose God’s ability to do what He says He can do, and hold onto that!

-Coach Brim


Emalee HanveyComment
Dread

Hey Partners and Friends!

Last time we looked at one of D’s of Satan - disappointment. We talked about how the devil uses disappointments in your life to move you out of the plan of God, and he tries to make you feel like you are out of faith because you are experiencing disappointments. We also talked about how Satan uses what I call the Domino Effect. If he gets you to believe the lie of disappointment, he can get you to push that first domino that leads you to believe the next lie in his plan. But, you are not alone! God is with you even in the midst of your disappointment, and He is there to help you out of it!

The next domino the devil will try to add to your plan is dread. We see an example of dread in the story of Giddeon. Here, God is trying to lead Giddeon to overcome the enemies of the Israelites. As far as the eye could see, armies had been raised up against him and the Israelites. God even told him, “be strong and courageous,” but all Giddeon could see was dread. In fact, he yielded to disappointment in himself and his abilities. He pushed over that first domino by focusing on disappointment, and that domino hit the next domino, dread.

Dread means to fear greatly. Giddeon took his disappointment in himself, which led to fearing his ability to do what God has said he could do! He questioned God about this fear. He focused his mind, will, and emotions on that fear instead of on God and what He said about him. Remember, God called Giddeon a mighty man of valor. What? You mean, even in the midst of Giddeon’s dread (fear) God spoke to him? You mean to tell me that God will still speak to me in the middle of my fear if I will lean towards him? Yes! All Giddeon had to do in the midst of his dread was to call on God. That is how awesome our God is! He loves you! He provides for you!  He makes a way for you even in the midst of the storms of life. Remember that measure of faith God has placed inside of you can be tapped into in the midst of the fear. All things are possible with God!

Determine this week that you are not going to start the domino effect in your life. Even in the midst of disappointments, rely on God’s strength. Even in the midst of dread or fear, rely on God’s Word to be in operation in your life by choosing His Word over the dread. Remember, you are not out of faith just because you are experiencing these situations in life. It is Satan’s game plan to use these situation to get your focus off of God and His power and strength to help you through. Champions, focus on God!

-Coach Brim


Emalee HanveyComment
Disappointment

Hello Champions!

Last time we talked about the Glory Days, and we found out that the season you are in right now, in God’s eyes, is meant to be your Glory Days. I am sure that you have had wonderful experiences in your past, but God has created a life for you and has equipped you with everything to help you achieve Glory Days every day of your life. However, that doesn’t mean we won’t experience disappointments in life. Every person on this planet experiences disappointments. Even the greatest faith people do! We all get disappointed.

Even God was disappointed! He was disappointed with the children of Israel. Jesus was disappointed. Remember? He said to God, “Father, why have you forsaken me?” Paul was disappointed with things that were happening in the churches that he had established. These are all examples of great people of faith, and they were disappointed.

There is no such thing as a “superhero” of faith who never gets disappointed. Let’s be real, let’s not be fake in our faith. Disappointments will come, but what we do with those disappointments will determine the course of the situation. Even Abraham, who was labeled in the Bible as the “Father of Faith,” was disappointed.

Being disappointed does not mean there is something wrong with you or that you are out of faith. Disappointment means that there is an adversary out there that is working against your happiness, and if he can get you to concentrate on your disappointment, then he has you! This is the beginning of the “D’s” of Satan’s plan. I call this the Domino Effect. Have you ever lined up a bunch of domino’s, pushed the first one, and then watched them all tumble down as each one hit the next one? This is Satan’s game plan against us. He has lined up the first domino, disappointment, and has presented it to you. He hopes you will concentrate on it and push it into the next phase of his plan. As Christians, sometimes we will accept this disappointment because we feel like we are out of faith. Because we are experiencing this disappointment, we feel like we have messed up and are not operating in faith. Champions, that is a lie from the enemy!

You have faith no matter what you may be experiencing. The Bible tells us that God has given us the measure of faith. So, at any point in your life, you have the measure of faith working on the inside of you. Even if you choose to focus on the disappointment, that measure of faith is still there! God has placed that gift inside of you, and all you have to do is choose to operate in that instead of operating in disappointment. God is always there to help you! Even in the midst of your disappointment, He will help you get back on track. Remember the scripture from last week, 1 Corinthians 10:13 (MSG). God will always be there to help you come through it.


Join me next week as we continue with the D’s of the devil. Remember that God is with you, even in the midst of disappointment. Choose to focus on God and His gifts over the disappointment.

-Coach Brim


Emalee HanveyComment