I cringed slightly as I listened to the teenagers from our church answer this question: “What does your faith mean to you?” Because nearly every one of them said, “My faith means . . . that when I die, I will go to heaven.”
Ahh . . . that’s true, but faith is so much more than that. Faith is not just a golden ticket you keep in your pocket in case you die today. Faith is trust in God’s present presence. Jesus died and rose so that every Christian could smile and say, “GOD is here.” He is. Not he will be. GOD is here!
This view of faith is the key to confidence, to peace, to contentment, to joy. “Do not be afraid, for I am with you” (Isaiah 43:5). GOD, the holy, glorious, incredible, thrilling, peace-giving GOD is here with you by the blood of Jesus. That’s the good news. Even though you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, you will fear no evil, for GOD is with you. Even though there are a dozen messed-up things in your life and a dozen more coming tomorrow, nothing can touch the promise of God—“I am with you.” Those are the words that have changed the world. And those are the words that can change your life. So smile, brothers and sisters—GOD is here!