Friday, August 7, 2020

FMF: Progress

Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers. (1 Timothy 4:15-16, NIV)
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Paul certainly as a lot of applicable advice for those he wrote to, and sometimes I miss the forest for the trees.  In Paul's first letter to Timothy, he encourages Timothy to be "diligent" in growing the spiritual gifts he's been given "so that everyone may see [his] progress."

I usually think about progress as something for myself.  I want to better myself.  There is nothing wrong with that.  Here, Paul affirms - once again - that we are not meant to live our our faith in solitude.  Our faith encourages the faith of others, and their faith encourages us.

I attend a weekly Bible study for women.  For the past thirteen weeks we've been talking about faith.  Who knew there was so much to study on faith!  After three months we are just finishing what faith IS, and we are beginning to study what faith DOES.

Faith makes progress.

Faith should never be happy with its current standing but always works hard to better the believer and those around the believer.  It changes the importance of my faith to think that my decisions impact more than just me.  When I lack the desire to do what is right, thinking of someone else may give me strength.


This post is a prompt from Five Minute Friday and was written in approximately five minutes. For more information, visit fiveminutefriday.com.

13 comments:

  1. Thanks for your post. It is a sobering but helpful reminder that the state or quality of my faith and its impact is not limited to my life. As you noted, "It changes the importance of my faith to think that my decisions impact more than just me." Visiting from FMF. Blessings.

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    1. Thanks for commenting. May we both improve in this area.

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  2. I like that your bible study not only focuses on what faith is but also what it does!

    I had a pastor once ask us, "What does God want from you more than anything else? I thought it was love, but he felt it was faith.

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    1. That is interesting idea. I will be thinking about it for a while.

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  3. Faith brings progress­čśü I Love reading your posts and how you see things through God's eyes.God bless. Fmf #7

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    1. That is a beautiful compliment. Thanks for reading.

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  4. "...we are not meant to live our our faith in solitude. Our faith encourages the faith of others, and their faith encourages us."

    Without living in community with other faithful believers we will have a really difficult time progressing in our faith and growth.

    Love this!

    Love,
    Annie

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    1. I hadn’t even thought about the current challenges and implications of “community” when I wrote that, but I guess every generation of believers has faced something they thought unique.

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  5. 'Faith makes progress." Outstanding. I'll use it for my next tat, if I may.

    I was going to write a bit here about progress (and faith) being sometimes, necessarily, retrograde; not in the sense that C.S. Lewis described, that turning back from the wrong road is in effect going forward, but more the despair of the Passion:' Why hast thou forsaken Me?"

    I would have written a bit more, but am now too ill to develop the thought that is deserved.

    May I leave this in your hands, Amie? In our virtual and brief acquaintence I have eveloped an enormous respect for the marriage of faith and logic that you present; I firmly believe that the paradigm of retrograe progress is worthy of development, and I know of no theoligian (yeah, YOU, deal with it!) better equipped for the job.

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    1. And please excuse the typos. My keyboard is getting a bit tired, and I did not poofrad as thoroughly as I may have.

      Proofread, not poofrad (which is, I'm sure you'll agree, an intriguing new word).

      And now, adieu.

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    2. I am honored you’d even consider me inspiration at that level.

      And “proofread” made me laugh out loud. =)

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  6. 'Faith should never be happy with its current standing but always works hard to better...' - that's thought-provoking. I've never thought of it that way before but it makes sense and it reminds me of 'faith without works is dead'. My faith is not just for myself but also for others. My faith should encourage others.

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  7. "we are not meant to live our our faith in solitude. Our faith encourages the faith of others, and their faith encourages us." Our relationships to each other are sacred.

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