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May 11, 2015

Intentional Faith

I will praise You, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things You have done. I will be filled with joy because of You. I will sing praises to Your name, O Most High. Psalm 9:1-2 (NLT)

I love David’s intentional faith! What is intentional faith? It’s authentic faith – faith in action. Faith is a verb. Faith was never meant to be static. Faith is dynamic! It may begin with an attitude, but it leads to an action. Faith by definition is intentional. It is something you do! Notice in this Psalm that David is taking decisive action about what he will do. Four times he says, “I will….” I will what?

  1. “I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart.”
  2. “I will tell of all the marvelous things You have done.”
  3. “I will be filled with joy because of You.”
  4. “I will sing praises to Your name, O Most High.”

Is it any wonder why the New Testament refers to David as a man after God’s own heart? In Acts 13:22, the Bible says,

God removed Saul and replaced him with David, a man about whom God said, “I have found David son of Jesse, a man after My own heart. He will do everything I want him to do.” 

God looked down and saw a man with intentional faith! David didn’t say, “I feel like praising you.” He said “I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart.” This is huge if we are to act with intentional faith. We can’t act on the basis of what we feel. Some days, you will feel like worshiping; you will feel happy, and it will be easy to praise the Lord with all your heart. When good things happen, you will feel like telling others of the marvelous things God has done. You will feel the joy and want to sing praises to God. That is wonderful! Those days are to be enjoyed and cherished.

Still, that was not the basis for David’s intentional faith. He made a choice to rejoice no matter what he felt. When you act out of faith instead of feelings, do you know what will happen? Your feelings will catch up to your faith. Before you know it, your heart will begin to shift and the circumstances that made you feel bad will begin to fade in the light of His glorious presence! Why? Because the Bible says that God inhabits the praises of His people! If you put your gaze on God and only glance at your problems, you will understand the perspective that David had. It is an eternal perspective.

Everything we go through today is temporary. Our problems are temporary. We can choose to be intentional and act in faith, believing that God is in control even when everything around us seems out of control! Praise Him in the storm!  Imagine how your life would be different if you made the same four faith proclamations, today, that David did. Memorize Psalm 9:1-2 and meditate on each declaration David made. Personalize them in your life and live with intentional faith.