The Faith Gap

The distance between what we know in our heads and believe in our hearts can seem ever-expanding at times. I grew up in the Bible-Belt South, have a seminary degree, and help pastor a vibrant local church. But don’t let any of that fool you. Death, disease and divorce affected my belief in God’s love and goodness early in life.

In other words, though I knew better, my beliefs reflected a God who was just out to get me (and didn’t even like me all that much). That was my faith gap. The space between what I knew and what I believed. You probably have one too.

I’m convinced now that it’s possible to make the gap smaller each day. People don’t grow a faith like the Apostle Paul in a week. Like strength training, you start with light weights and lift more and more over time.

2 Corinthians 3:17-18
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

That’s the journey every Christ-follower is on. We are constantly shaped into the same image one degree at a time. The shaping takes on various forms, but a framework I’ve experienced many times looks something like this:

  1. Getting honest with yourself about real-life experiences
  2. Learning (or reminding yourself of) a truth from God’s Word
  3. Then, in light of your real-life experiences, bringing the truth to bear in your heart by taking one starting step.

I’ve watched the gap dissipate in my life and, like the verse promises, freedom was waiting on the other side. One starting step I took in the journey was to embrace God-given passions in my life; specifically writing.

A friend and mentor of mine suggested I start a blog as a way to sharpen my ability. I pushed back at first (We usually do when being stretched from one degree to another). But he helped by saying, “Don’t feel like you have to change the world. For now, just write about whatever interests you.” One step.

So, I started BillyBatmanPudding.com. There were three random things in my life that I’ve loved since childhood: Billy Joel’s music, Batman, and chocolate pudding. I thought about the title for about 30 seconds. Over the next several months, however, I noticed some things:

  1. I loved writing (even when it was about something ridiculous like pudding).
  2. I loved reading other people’s writing.
  3. Things I was writing about resonated with people all over the world (50+ countries).
  4. Things that resonated the most had to do with their own faith gap.

I decided, then, to change the name of the blog and narrow the focus to help people close the distance between knowing and believing (TheFaithGap.com). Now, every post takes on the three components mentioned above in hopes to make that gap smaller in your life.

Now, take a starting step. One suggestion is to subscribe to TheFaithGap.com and receive posts each week through email. They could be part of your strength training program that brings you from one degree of glory to the next.

Either way, I hope and pray the Holy Spirit brings freedom in your life by shrinking the distance between what you know in your head and what you believe in your heart…

because the gap keeps too many people away from True Life.

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