In July 2008, our church stepped out in faith and moved. The worship center in our new building could seat three times as many people…people we did not yet have. But faith is not just about believing when you don’t see; it’s also about obeying when you don’t have a guarantee.
Our fundraising program for our move was called the “Crazy Campaign” because it was a big step of faith. Some people said it was crazy to expect the kind of growth we would need to sustain ourselves. And when it came time to move, some said it was crazy to make an offer on a building before we sold ours. After all, church buildings aren't in high demand. But while some said it was crazy, most of us had faith. A vote indicated that 94% of our congregation agreed we should move ahead, make the offer on the new building, and see what God would do.
So we did. We made the offer on the new building without knowing how long we would still be making payments on the old one. Two days after the vote, another church called and wanted to see our building. One day later, they made an offer. Later that week, we discovered that another local business had made an offer on our new building right after we did. If we had not stepped out in faith, we would have missed out on what God had in store for us.
Stepping out is scary. It’s one thing to tell God, “Fine. I believe that all things our possible with you.” It’s another thing entirely to act on that belief. Yet, if we never act on it, we will miss out on seeing the amazing things God wants to do in and through us.
Hebrews 11:8 says, “By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.” Abraham was 75 years old when God told him to move. He had no destination. No plan. No map. No GPS. God just said, “Move. When you get there, I’ll tell you.” Abraham had to believe and act on that belief. God also said that Abraham would be the father of a great nation, but he and his wife, Sarah, were childless. They had given up that dream. But God hadn't. And He asked them to believe and to act.
Abraham had to make a decision. Should he obey and go? Should he believe this God who promised children to senior citizens and destinations without maps? It would have been easier to stay and play it safe. Going at his age with no destination didn't make sense. It was crazy. He couldn't understand it…but he obeyed anyway.
Faith almost always requires a measure of risk, and oftentimes, it will be a test, for there are no guarantees. When we step out in faith, it may not work out the way we think it will, but we must trust that God always has our best in mind. We must believe “in all things God works for the good of those who love Him” (Romans 8:28). Still, it is not easy to leave the safe and secure, as Abraham did, and step out into the unknown. But if walking by faith were easy, everyone would do it.
So, what step of faith is God calling you to take? Is He asking you to relocate as He did Abraham? To forgive someone who doesn't deserve it? To deal with your stuff by seeing a counselor? To finally end an addiction that has controlled you? Doing any of these things requires risk. The question is—Are you crazy enough for God’s sake to take that risk?