It has been said: “Common sense is not common.” God has given us all the ability to think and see things honestly and objectively. Common sense is acting responsibly and reasonably in light of the information we have.
As believers, our faith in God does not always look reasonable to others. People who are not building their lives on God’s Word will never understand why we do many of the things we do.
On the other hand, too many believers think common sense and acting in faith conflict with one another. True Bible faith acts on God’s Word. That is common sense for a Christian! But it’s not true Bible faith when we stop acting responsibly toward the different demands we face.
For example, God’s Word teaches us to honor Him through giving tithes and offerings. It is a vital part of our covenant life with Him. For many people outside covenant living, it does not make sense to give and expect God to bless us financially.
Then again, sometimes young believers think they can impress God or others with their great faith by giving in such a way that they leave themselves without money to take care of their personal responsibilities. One woman gave away her car and was unable to drive to work so she lost her job. That is not faith at all.
God’s Word does not tell us to “give until it hurts.” That kind of giving is works and not faith and can hurt a lot of people.
Common sense looks at the big picture and seeks the wisdom of God to act in faith in every direction. Acting in faith in one area will never result in violating another aspect of obedience to God’s Word.
We must also keep abreast of the facts. Taking an honest inventory of our successes and failures, our strengths and weakness, our victories and our challenges, can be one of the most effective ways of assessing our spiritual progress. Honesty with ourselves will play a vital role in the results we will obtain.
To evaluate the facts as they currently exist is the only way to clearly see the targets we need to hit. Then we can actually begin to attack the facts with the truth.
Faith in God’s Word can change the facts. However, if we deny the facts exist, or we ignore the facts altogether, we are unable to focus our prayers and our faith to change them. Instead, we must look straight at the facts that need changing, acknowledge the situation, and then attack the facts with the truth of God’s Word.
Another pitfall to our faith life is walking in presumption. If we have embraced God’s Word, and are acting on the Word that is alive in our hearts, we have every right to expect the supernatural. Real Bible faith comes from our hearts — not our heads. We are the only one who really knows if we are ready to step out in faith on a particular promise of God. If we are merely hoping things work out and do not have a real assurance from our hearts, we are setting ourselves up for failure.
We will avoid these pitfalls when we know in our hearts that we are truly acting in faith and not merely wanting things to be different. We can’t allow presumption to rob us of our focus and block the fulfillment of our God-given dreams.