167: What Does It Look Like to Live Out Your Faith Consistently?
Hey, friend! Welcome back to the Live It Out with The Planning Woman podcast. In the last two episodes, I’ve shared what it means to live out your faith with clarity and courage. If you’ve not had the chance to listen to those episodes, I’ve linked them in the show notes so you can check them out.
I’m excited to dive into the topic of living out your faith consistently today in episode 167. This episode contains practical tips to help you consistently live out your faith.
I mentioned a couple of weeks ago in episode 165 that when I surveyed my newsletter subscribers and asked about their number one struggle with living out their faith, most women responded with something like not having enough time or being able to do it consistently. And I think the point of view they are coming from is seeing living out their faith as something they do, like reading the Bible, praying, going to church, or being a part of a Bible study.
While these things I’ve just mentioned are an important part of living out your faith, there is so much more to it. Living out your faith means living in such a way that others either know you are a believer or they are drawn to how you live, and then you can tell them about Jesus.
So this means our whole lives should show we are living out our faith. I’m sure you’re asking, “Jennifer, that sounds great, but what does that really look like?”
The best thing I know to do is to turn to scripture and see what it says our lives should look like as believers.
Two Passages for Living Out Your Faith Consistently
The first is Galatians 5:22-24. It says:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
This passage says to me that if we are followers of Christ, then our life will be marked by the fruit of the Spirit. No matter what we do, there will be some element of the fruit of the Spirit that is present.
Now, will we always get this right? No, we’re not perfect. But people should see this in our lives if we live out our faith.
The second passage I want to share is Romans 12:1-2.
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Once again, we see that when we live out our faith, we are doing things God’s way and not following what the world says we should do. I want to throw a word of caution in here. These things I’m talking about in the passages we just read, plus the practical tips I’m going to share, are not what saves us. This is not about being legalistic and doing works to gain salvation. If you’ve trusted Christ as your Savior, your salvation is secure. But living out our faith shows our salvation to others and hopefully draws them to want to know Christ.
Living out our faith is an outflow of the gratitude we have for our salvation.
Do you see the difference I’m talking about? It’s more about how we do things than just what we do. What we do is important. But how we do those things is even more important. If we’re doing something out of obligation or compulsion and our attitudes are not the best, then it won’t matter what good thing it is we’re doing. Our attitude can negate the good we’re trying to do.
Practical Tips for Living Out Your Faith Consistently
So how do we get to the point where our lives reflect the fruit of the Spirit and see that our minds are being renewed and transformed in a way that honors God?
This is where some of the women who did my survey mentioned the practical things they struggled with. I’m going to share five things you can begin to do or think about doing that will help cultivate the fruit of the Spirit in your life and help you live out your faith consistently.
The first thing we need to do is find a consistent time with God every day. All the other things I will share will flow from getting a consistent time with God built into your daily schedule or routines. Again, this is not something we’re doing just to check a box on our to-do list. We have to be tuned into God to be able to hear from him and understand just what it is he wants us to do.
The best way I know to do this, especially if it’s not already a part of your day, is to find at least 10-15 minutes in your day where you can show up consistently. I know. It’s hard sometimes. But I bet if you look at how much time you are wasting in other areas of your life, you’ll be able to nail down a time in your day when you can consistently meet with God. I say start with 10-15 minutes because that is doable. But as you get to know God better, you will want to spend more time with him. Just start where you can.
Reading the Bible is the second way you can live out your faith consistently. I know. That’s the standard Sunday school answer. But it’s true. In my hermeneutics class I’m taking this term, which means interpreting the Bible; my professor says the only way to get good at interpreting the Bible is to know it well. And to know it well, we have to read it consistently. I have read the Bible through 3 or 4 times. I’ve done numerous Bible studies over the years. And I still learn something new when I read it. So as part of your quiet time with God, reading the Bible should be one of the main things you do. I think devotionals are great. But you need to see what the Bible says for yourself.
And that leads me to the third thing we can do to live out our faith consistently: memorizing scripture. I know a few verses by memory. And sometimes, I know where certain verses are found in the Bible. But I need and want to memorize more. This is what we call hiding God’s Word in our hearts. Knowing the Bible by reading it is one thing. Internalizing by memorizing scripture takes it to a whole new level. When you can recall what the bible says, you will find yourself leaning on those verses in difficult times. And you can share them with others who may be struggling with something. If you struggle with memorizing scripture, let me share some ideas that may help you. First, do you know how easy it is to recall lyrics to songs you’ve sung for years? Learning scripture can be the same way. You don’t have to set verses to music. You just have to repeat them out loud over and over again. Eventually, they will become stuck in your mind and will be easier to recall. I learned to do this next thing from a fellow student in one of my classes. He says he types the verse in his reminders on his phone and has a reminder to come up at a specific time every day. When it pops up, he reads the verses a few times. Eventually, they begin to stick in his mind. You may have other tips or tricks for memorizing verses. The key is to memorize them so you’ll always be able to recall them.
Praying is another thing we can do to live out our faith. Again, we can do this in our quiet time each day. But praying throughout the day is a good idea, too. Praying for needs as we see them or think of them keeps the lines of communication open between God and us. It can become second nature to talk with God about any and everything. And if you struggle with patience, peace, or kindness, you can pray and ask God to help you when you face situations that you know will challenge you to be patient, kind, or peaceful.
The last thing I want to share is that we can live out our faith consistently when we serve others. We’re reminded in Philippians 2:3 to “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit but in humility consider others more significant than yourselves.” When we put the needs of others before our own, we are living out our faith. We are modeling what Christ did for others. Now there is a fine balance between serving and burning ourselves out. But I feel there is a need, or at least in my own life, I feel this way, for more service. We’ve become so isolated these last few years. We need to get out into our community, state, and the world to serve others with the gifts God has given us to help other people and to share the love of Christ.
I hope you’ve been inspired to pick one of these things I just talked about to implement into your life in 2023. If you want encouragement and accountability around these topics, I invite you to join my new community, the Live It Out community. We’ll talk about all these things and other ways to live out your faith in the coming year. I’ll put a link in the show notes so you can check it out.
This is my last episode of 2022. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year. Until next time, let’s live it out!