Faith: Our Anchor in Life
God always has a purposeful way with the timing of life events, even devastating ones (Romans 8:28). In the midst of writing this piece, I received very tragic and heartbreaking news about one of my sisters. With that being said, what I am sharing about faith isn’t just secondhand rhetoric but it’s first-hand experience.
Having a personal, anchored faith is what got me through that storm and is what sustains me through its waves of grief and ripples of headache and has also carried me through other storms during the course of my life.
One of the most important features on a boat is its anchor. An anchor keeps the vessel in one place and helps to combat harsh winds and currents that could move and displace it off course. Anchors also secure a boat to the seabed to prevent it from drifting away.
Life can be unpredictable like the waters of the sea and the life of the believer shares a lot of similarities with that of a boat.
Like a boat, some of our days are smooth sailing. Other days we encounter treacherous winds and downpours. Other times we experience storms that nearly destroy our vessel and well-being and turn our world upside down.
But as believers, like boats with secure anchors that can survive the roughest waters and storms, so can we when we are anchored in our faith.
As a believer, our faith has to be our anchor in this life. It’s easy to have faith when things are going well. But the reality is we live in an evil world filled with suffering and waves of life that crash upon us that are unbearable to handle on our own. Another aspect about this life is that everything is temporary and susceptible to change. Nothing in this world is guaranteed to stay the same.
But Hebrews 6:17-18 tells us two things that cannot and never will change:
“God wanted to prove that his promise was true. He wanted to prove this to those who would get what he promised. He wanted them to understand clearly that his purposes never change. So God proved his promise by also making an oath. These two things cannot change. God cannot lie when he makes a promise, and he cannot lie when he makes an oath. These things encourage us who came to God for safety. They give us strength to hold on to the hope we have been given.” – Hebrews 6:17-18 ICB
The only two things in life that are guaranteed and that do not change is God and His promises. This security is the foundation for an anchored faith.
Building an Anchored Faith
Faith combines assurance and anticipation (Hebrews 11:1). A beginning point of faith is believing in God’s character – who He is. An end point of faith is believing in God’s promises – what He says, He will do. Faith combines the assurance of God’s character and the expectancy of God’s promises. To have an anchored faith, we must know God’s character and His promises.
Knowing God’s Character
One of the primary ways to learn God’s character is to read, study, and meditate on His Word. The Lord’s character is proclaimed throughout the Bible. Growing in our knowledge and understanding of who God is deepens our trust in Him. We cannot trust in someone we do not know. Therefore, knowing God’s character builds and anchors our faith in Him. Psalm 18:30 tells us “As for God, His way is perfect: The Lord’s word is flawless”. There is nothing more secure than that!
Remember God’s Promises
There are countless promises in God’s Word for believers. All the promises of God reflect His character. One of the greatest promises the Lord has fulfilled is sending his son Jesus to live, die, resurrect, and conquer the sting of death for all of humanity. Jesus Christ is truly the embodiment and power of God’s faithfulness to His promises. 2 Corinthians 1:20 NIV declares that “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”
No matter what we face in life, we must believe and trust in God’s unfailing love for us and remember that because of Jesus, God has already fulfilled promises and will keep His promises.
Another aspect of God’s promises is they are eternal. This means that the Lord’s promises are not just for or confined to time here on earth but they also transcend into and for eternity.
When we combine knowing God’s character and remembering His promises, it cultivates a life of experiencing His character and promises for ourselves. This is what makes our faith become real and personal. When we can recognize the character and promises of God in our own life, we build our own track record of countless testimonies of Lord’s faithfulness to us. This adds to the foundation of our anchored faith.
Anchored Faith Like the Heroes of Faith
In Hebrews 11, popularly known as the “Hall of Fame of Faith”, we find a collection of faith stories of believers who lived lives of anchored faith. Not a perfect, struggle-free life, but a life dedicated to trusting in the character and promises of God, no matter what. These testimonies and witnesses of faith are written as an encouragement for us and to spawn our confidence in the Lord.
These heroes show us that faith goes beyond the simple acknowledgement of God’s existence. Our faith should lead us to have a personal, dynamic life-long relationship with the Lord.
The Heroes of Faith show us that faith helps us see beyond this earthly life. They teach us that faith looks beyond the world’s value system to see the eternal values of God’s kingdom. They exemplify that faith keeps us anchored and from drifting away with the cares, concerns and distractions of this world. They demonstrate that faith helps us do what is right regardless of the cost. They are examples of how faith allows us to entrust God with everything. These Heroes of Faith show us that faith requires trusting in God and doing what He wants regardless of the circumstances or consequences.
The truth is having an anchored faith in God does not guarantee a happy, carefree life. Actually our faith almost guarantees various forms of struggles and sufferings in this world. And let’s not forget that we have a real enemy, Satan, fighting every day for our souls and to diminish and eradicate our trust in the Lord.
But despite the waves and storms of life we go through as believers, just like a securely, anchored boat, being anchored in our faith by knowing God’s character and his promises is the only thing that will sustain us both now and into eternity.
This hope [this confident assurance] we have as a [strong and trustworthy] anchor of the soul [it cannot slip and it cannot break down under whatever pressure bears upon it]—a safe and steadfast hope [firm and secure]…
Hebrews 6:19 AMP