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Stories of Faith from Four Inspiring Christians
Faith is Confident Assurance of Things hoped for
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible (Hebrews 11:1;3)
The Trans-Atlantic slave trade was the largest forced human migration in history. Slaves were not treated as human beings but a different species all together because of the color of their skin and their “weird” ways. Parliament English man and a devout Christian, William Wilberforce was only 25 years old when he decided to act on this social injustice. Despite the propaganda that slavery is a normal course of economic prosperity, William fought for the rights of the slaves, it took him eighteen years but in February 1807, members of the House of Commons voted to edict an Act to abolish slavery. It even took longer—approximately twenty six years after the Act was passed before the English Parliament finally was able to free all slaves throughout the British Empire. It is through William’s faith that he found confident assurance that his work is not a futile attempt. Despite the fact that it took years for his efforts to bear any fruit, and almost without any possibility of hope; his efforts were unfaltering because he has faith. He saw the goal, he had the vision, and he has confident assurance of the actuality of that vision (Dean & Dean, 2008).
Faith is following God’s Will
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:12; 14)
Ever since she was a little girl, Mildred Cable wanted to be a missionary in India. Coming from a wealthy family, she was one of the first women who had earned a degree and wanted to use her education in reaching out to the people of India. However, God has a different plan for her and in 1902, just 23 years old, she set sail to China to serve for the China Inland Mission. Mildred Cable and two fellow missionaries—Eva and Francesca French, went to the far flung and remote areas of China to preach the good news. Mildred was so faithful to God’s will that she and 2 female missionary companions were the first English women to ever cross the Gobi Dessert. More than once they were assailed by bandits, caught up in the middle of local wars, and fell victim to the unpredictable weather. But God’s faithfulness was with them as they preach the God's message to the people (Hester, 2006).
Faith is 100% Commitment
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace (Acts 20:24)
Eric Liddell was the son of Scottish missionary parents working in China during the early 1900s. Despite being separated to their parents, Eric and Rob maintained close-relationship with their parents while staying in boarding school. In 1920, Eric Liddell was part of the Scottish team for the Olympics in Paris who would compete in various race competitions. He trained for 200-meter and 400-meter but his best event was the 100-meter race. When the 100-meter race fell on a Sunday, he refused to compete despite the consequence that he would be disqualified for the event. His commitment to his faith might not have won him the gold medal in that race but had provided a powerful testament on his commitment to the Christian race for the glory of God. Despite the prestige and accolade in sports, Eric chose to dedicate his career following his parents’ footsteps and serving as a missionary for the advancement of God’s work in China till his death in 1945 (Heart O' Scotland, 2010).
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Faith is to keep on Moving Forward, Steadily to God’s Land of Promise
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7)
A son of a Merchant sailor, John Newton was best known as the author of Amazing Grace. And indeed his life story is both amazing and about grace. A captain of a slave ship, Newton found his faith on the most humbling way when he was sure that his ship would sink in the storm, he succumb to a higher authority for the salvation of his ship. It was the start of his faith. As a new Christian it was difficult to give up a lucrative business of slave trade but he did give it up, after falling seriously ill, he gave up sailing to be a tide surveyor and a worker in the ministry. From that day on, and 43 years later till the end of his life, Newton preached the gospel in Olney and London. His life story could be best summarized by the song Amazing Grace. He started the race in the wrong way, but it was God’s grace that allowed Newton to fight the good fight and keep the faith till his last breath (Rogers, 1996).
Dean, M., & Dean, K. (2008). William Wilberforce (1759-1833). Retrieved September 29, 2010, from Christian Heroes: http://www.christianheroes.com/people/christian_heroes_william_wilberforce.asp
Heart O' Scotland. (2010). Eric Liddell - Olympic Athlete and Christian Misisonary. Retrieved September 29, 2010, from Heart O' Scotland: http://www.heartoscotland.com/Categories/eric-liddell.htm
Hester, D. (2006). Biography of Mildred Cable. Missionary and Feminist Icon. Retrieved September 29, 2010, from Eggleton: http://www.saunalahti.fi/regglet/mildredcable.html
Rogers, A. (1996, August). amazing Grace: The Story of John Newton. Retrieved September 29, 2010, from AnointedLinks.com: http://www.anointedlinks.com/amazing_grace.html