A Grand Experiment

July 25th, 2007 • Category: My Favorite Scripture
by Pastor Jeff

Today’s scripture: I John 5:4 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider these questions: What might God be saying to me in this passage? What jumps out at me? At the end of the reading, try to summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two before reading on.

My thoughts on this passage (Jeff Miner):

In the churches I grew up in, we were encouraged to pick a “life verse.” The goal was to find a verse that spoke deeply to us, that we hoped would define our lives, and then “live into” that verse. Asking someone “What’s your life verse?” was as common in fundamentalist circles back then as it was in other circles to ask, “What’s your sign?”

I chose First John 5:4 as my life verse. In the old King James Version I used as a teenager, the verse reads: “Whatever is born of God overcometh the world, and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” That verse has always appealed to me because, intuitively, it has always seemed to me that faith is something that ought to work.

When conducting experiments in a laboratory, scientists will test a theory. If they get a positive result, they keep repeating the same procedure to see if they can consistently achieve the same positive result. If so, they know they’re on to something.

Faith should be the same way. Faith should consistently change our lives for the better. I’m not saying that faith should be a way of gaining everything I want. Rather, faith should be something that helps me live well in (i.e., “overcome”) every circumstance. If faith doesn’t do that — if it doesn’t work — I need to keep searching for something that does.

The faith found in the Scriptures works — powerfully. It raised Jesus from the dead, it healed the lame, it lifts broken hearts, it gives profound insight for living. By God’s grace, I want to embrace that faith, make it my own, and live a triumphant life no matter what circumstances come my way. In short, by God’s grace, I want to “overcome the world.”

How about you? Don’t sell yourself short. Embrace your faith and put it to work in your life. If we’re open to it, there is no circumstance that God cannot enable us to triumph over.

Thought for the day: What’s your life verse? As you study the Bible, be on the lookout for a key verse that you hope to “live into.”

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. Use the item above as a starting point, or consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

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