Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, while it is said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”
In that first moment, everything in the world seemed right. The worries he had carried with him into that room were gone. Nothing mattered in that moment except for that moment. It was as if every bit of noise and distraction outside that place disappeared. He would go home on cloud 9 and start the next day just as joyful. He now had a great hope to carry him through life, but he would have no idea exactly how long and tumultuous that life would be. He had been through the ringer up to that point, but he had not seen anything yet. The hardest part of this whole journey would be to keep the pure faith from that first moment and maintain it for the long haul.
I think the beginning of this walk looks similar to most, if not all, of us. We can pinpoint the miraculous moment when life and the world around us changed because we changed. We might have taken that first day’s fire and run with it, signing up for every Bible study or conference we could find, buying journals and devotionals by the cartful. We just wanted to fill ourselves with the things of the Lord, and that is a wonderful place to occupy. The challenge is to keep that fire going and keep it just as hot for the duration of this life. For some, that will be a few short years. For others, it can be decades. There is much which will come against us to try and harden our hearts, and that will be the test of our confidence. Whether we waver depends on whether we have been able to maintain that early faith and even build on it.
The wide-eyed confidence of the new believer is refreshing and encouraging. For many of us, we have faded from that youthful faith of simply believing right off the bat. Perhaps we think we are too wise for that, or maybe we have become jaded. Today’s passage reminds us that our “believe first, ask later” faith was not necessarily off the mark. We need to filter out the distractions and forget the disappointments. We need to remember what is was like to simply believe, because the Lord is looking for faith that cannot be found in those who doubt. Father, take us back to those first moments of confidence in You, and help us to build on that and become more confident daily.