Written by Jon Shaffer

What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.

James 2:14-18

What is faith?

Faith is tangible. As Hebrews 11:1 says, faith is substance. We live in a time and age where it’s easier (and sometimes actually more preferable) to talk about it rather than actually be about it. But James said that faith without works is dead; we show our faith by what we do. Talking about faith is not enough.

If you believe God called you to a place or a people, then go! If you’re already there, then stay – no matter what obstacle or hardship is trying to push you off!

Do you believe God is our Healer? Then continue to believe for that healing!

Do you believe God is our Provider? Then don’t let discouragement and dismay set in when resources are low!

I often say there are two types of faith in action: Mountain Moving faith and Mountain Climbing faith. Mountain Moving faith is the faith referenced by Jesus in Mark 11:22-24. He says to speak to the mountain and it will move. I love seeing this kind of faith in action! Situations are changed, funds are released, sicknesses must go, and demonic powers are rendered powerless by simply having the faith to “speak to the things that are not as though they were!” 2 Corinthians 4:13 says “We believe; therefore, we speak.” So when the time comes to lay claim to that which is ours by faith, or speak to our need, Mountain Moving faith is all we need.

However, there are times when it takes more than a word. That’s when you need Mountain Climbing faith. In Genesis 22, Abraham was called by God to sacrifice his son – his miracle son given in his old age, the son through which his offspring would be named. Without question or quarrel, complaint or hesitation, Abraham loaded the wood for the sacrifice on the back of his son and led him up Mt. Moriah to obey the word of the Lord. Many people far smarter than me have speculated what Abraham may have been thinking during that trip. Personally, I believe the Scripture doesn’t even hint at his thoughts (other than what is mentioned in Hebrews 11) because God wanted to illustrate for us total, unwavering faith. God spoke, and Abraham listened. God said, and Abraham trusted.

It’s one thing to speak to a mountain…it’s a different thing completely to trudge up a mountain and lay down everything you love and care about as a sacrifice toward God because you trust and believe in Him.

I love how Hebrews 11:19 gives us some insight to Abraham’s mindset during that time. “Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead.” What great faith! Romans 4:20-21 describes Abraham’s faith-led actions: “No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what He had promised.”

When it comes to your faith, are you only willing to speak about it? Or are you fully convinced to the point of laying it all on the line and trusting God is the face of insurmountable odds?! Belief looks like something! Don’t just say you believe it – back that stuff up with action and an attitude that says, even though He slay me, I will yet trust in Him!

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” (2 Cor. 4:16-18)

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of what we do not see!

CityReach Church Swissvale- Jon Shaffer

Pastor Jon Shaffer & his wife Christine launched the very first CityReach Church plant in Braddock, PA in 2009. In 2014, they launched their second church, CityReach Church Swissvale. Jon also serves at CITYREACH NETWORK as the COO and a regional pastor.