Now faith is being sure of what we hope for, being convinced of what we do not see. – Hebrews 11:1
Things we cannot see: The wind. Love. God.
Yet we feel each of these. We definitely can see the effects of a strong wind, and even hear the rustling caused by a small breeze. It’s no wonder Jesus describes the Spirit of God as being like the wind. We feel His presence rather than see it, the results are all around us.
The same with love. We observe compassionate acts, and like the wind we can see the effects of love, in actions and the way it changes people. But one step farther, what is more powerful than a deep sense of love in our hearts? It is the emotional experience that brings us closest to God, because love defines His very nature to us. It’s no wonder He constantly tells us that of all things, love is the most important.
What about God? Do we hear His rustlings? Do we see the effects of His power? Do we feel His presence? Does He work compassion through us? Does He change us? These are the things that give us confidence in what we do not see. God doesn’t want to prove Himself with signs in the sky proclaiming His existence, or appearing on every cable channel and internet stream all of a sudden telling everyone “here I am.” He asks us to believe in Him through faith, because that kind of trust will bring about love. A loud, visible, undeniable god would be believed, but He would inspire fear and not love. That kind of a god would be frightening, and we would seem as nothing compared to him.
Instead, God becomes Jesus. He becomes one of us to tell us about His love and who He is. No thunderous voice, no condemnations, no shielding our eyes from something we can never understand. We have traded fear for faith. And faith is what makes us sure.