January 25, 2019 Brethren Letter

Dear Brethren,

When I was a boy, one of my classmates in elementary school asked me what church I belonged to. Since my family didn’t attend any organized church, that question puzzled me. I didn’t know the answer.

When I returned home, I asked my mother that very perplexing question, “What Church do we belong to?” She simple said, “Oh, you’re a _________. That’s the FAITH you belong to.” Well, as a child, I was quite satisfied with that answer and couldn’t wait to tell my friends the next day. My answer didn’t seem to offend anyone, even with various other Church names being represented. However, from that point on I equated the word “FAITH” with the name of a Church a person belongs to.

When God began to call me later in life (John 6:44), I started to realize that the word “faith” had more meaning than the name of a Church.

I have always found the disciple Peter’s experience walking on water to be very profound. Though Peter started out well by walking on the water, we find that he began to doubt, and began sinking into the water.

Matthew 14:22-32 [22] Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. [23] And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. [24] But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary. [25] Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. [26] And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. [27] But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” [28] And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” [29] So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. [30] But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save

me!” [31] And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” [32] And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.

I’m sure all of us can identify with Peter’s example of being human, and having human failings. Obviously, God was still able to use Peter mightily. Christ was demonstrating to Peter and the others in the boat what faith was. Just like all of us today, Peter, (as well as the others), went through a spiritual process of learning lessons about “FAITH.”

In Matthew 17:20 Christ tells us, “If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.” By His words, we can see that having even a small amount of faith can accomplish great things. That’s not to say we would be given the ability to toss mountains around like toys. Ripping mountains from their foundations would not serve any spiritual purpose. However, Christ is illustrating a point of what even a small amount of faith can achieve.

The faith we must have comes from God’s Spirit and is not our own. It is literally the faith OF Jesus Christ living in us Philippians 3:9. “And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith” That’s a faith worth praying for daily!

Please have a good night’s rest. We look forward to seeing you tomorrow on God’s Sabbath.

Sincerely, Your Brother in Christ,

Gary Liebold

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