Faith and Experience

By Not Known

Some people claim Rene Descartes’ words, “I think therefore I am” to prove their existence.  Others reiterate “I feel therefore I am” to affirm that feelings are just as important.

We need thinkers as much as we need to be emotionally stable to function well.  Some would assert that we must always be balanced in order to nurture our being.

So many of us have to fight and struggle through each day with our moods, feelings, and emotions.  We can’t seem to bring them into subjection under our Lord.  As a result, we blame our meagre faith and point a finger at the lack of this experience or that experience.

What does faith in Christ really mean?  Is it just intellectual or is it just emotional?  Do we not know God and express that knowledge in joy and wonderment?  Or do we get so entrenched in our understanding of God that our faith becomes devoid of feelings?

We have often heard some well-meaning Christians who complained that, “I can’t feel anything about God!”  

When Paul wrote to the Galatians and told them that “I am crucified with Christ” he was referring to the death of the old self, the new now reigns in him.  This is achievable only through faith in the Son of God.  This faith is not just a body of knowledge or a school of wisdom.  This faith is active in lives that are lived for God.  The faith is the anchor and the life experience is the outgrowth of that.  This faith is seen by absolute, unrestrained devotion to Christ himself.  It flows out of our determined confidence in the Lord himself.

This faith is our daily trusting in our life’s experiences on the immovable rock of our Lord.  It takes away fear and doubts and replaces them with cheer and praise;  irrepressible and triumphant glorification in our worship.

Elsewhere, Paul told the Romans (12:1-2) that our daily sacrifice is the living sacrifice of worship.  Our lives, our being, our all are to be placed on the altar as a fitting worship to God.   

So, on one hand, we nourish ourselves in our faith through our understanding of the scripture.  On the other hand, that understanding flows into our outward worship with our feelings and our display of practical actions that is godly and word-centred.

Let us affirm with Paul when he said, “I am crucified with Christ.  It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.  The life which I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.”


Peter Poon