In Episode 6 of Season 3, Desireé uses a fun party game to describe what faithfulness can sometimes feel like. In this episode she unpacks how confidence, trust and relationships all relate to faithfulness. She offers biblical examples of faith in action and how even Jesus’ disciples sometimes wavered in their walk. In the end, we can imagine Jesus talking directly to us on our own walk.
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Ciao and welcome to Life Out Loud. I am your host Desireeé Melfi Bozzo. We are going to use this space to share experiences and help you find lasting unshakable unwavering unmessable with joy and gratitude. We're going to be throwing around encouragement, a little bit like confetti and giving you support to live your very best life. Ciao Friends! Welcome to Episode 6 of Season 3 of the Life Out Loud podcast. I am a creator of this podcast and your host, Desireé Melfi Bozzo. Thank you for being here with me in this space. I am so glad you're here. And I hope you're pretty glad too! This season as you may know, we are making our way through the Fruits of the Spirit found in Galatians 5 in the Bible, the fruits and how much of them we are bearing are a really good barometer for our lives. Now if you aren't familiar with them, and you're like, is this a cooking show? I'm sorry, what fruit? Are we talking about cooking here? No, we are not. Head back to the first episode of the season. Take a quick listen, get a stellar foundation, and then meet back up with us. If you have been hanging around this space for season 3, you know that Galatians 5 tells us the fruits of the Spirit are love joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control, which I lack when it comes to ice cream. Also sushi. I digress. Today we are nearing the end of this list talking about faithfulness. Now, before we can begin to bear the amazing fruit of faithfulness, we have to understand what it is. So the fruit of the fruit of faithfulness. Just hang with me on this one. Okay. It used to remind me of that party game where you put your hand in a mystery box, but you have no idea what's in there. You have to feel around in the dark to guess and sometimes it's a bowl of jello and sometimes it's uncooked rice and sometimes it's a hamster. Yeah, I just Yep. I said hamster. Friends. I don't know about you. But I very strongly dislike that game entirely. I didn't like it when I was five. And I didn't like it when I was 15. And I definitely didn't like it at 25. My hand isn't going anywhere near that box if I don't know what's going to meet me in there. Even if I know what's in there, it's still not going near it because bait and switch is a real thing. You peek in there you see a pile of sugar cube start to feel okay about it. And then bam, put your hand in and it's a bowl of mashed potatoes, bait and switch every time. When I when I first really started diving into my walk with Jesus faithfulness, felt a lot like that game. Right? I told you this was going somewhere. It was terrifying because the unknown can be terrifying. I don't know if you're one of those people that's like cool with the unknown, but I'm not, okay. I don't want to play that game at a party and I definitely don't want to play it with my life. Over time, my understanding about all things Jesus has grown and faithfulness no longer resembles the Mystery Box party game. But I also know that's not true for everyone. For some, it's still the scary thing and you don't entirely know what you're going to end up with. And so it's better to just keep your hands safe and sound. I understand. Trust me. The more I studied faithfulness, the more I realized something really specific about it. The heart of faithfulness is trust. Specifically trust in the truth of Scripture. In Hebrews 11:1, it says “Now faith is the competence in what we hope for and the assurance about what we do not see.” When we are confident about something our minds can't be changed about it, or beliefs can't be altered. We are unwavering, unshakable and unmessable with, right? Right! If we want to bear the fruit of faithfulness, we have to believe we can trust Jesus. Now, here's why I have to pause and talk about trust for a moment. Faithfulness can be a very hard trait to bear because its power is contingent on trust. If we don't have trust for God, we have a really, really hard time having faith in him. Some commentary on this says – oh gosh, it's so eloquent – When we don't trust in the Lord with knowledge and understanding that He will provide for his beloved, our faith is what lacks. When we don't believe or trust what Jesus says in his teaching, our faith is what is deficient. I told you, it was eloquent. It's beautiful. Friends, I want you to think about some of the closest most important relationships in your life. Relationships where you have the ultimate trust in the person. Why do you trust them? We have this level of trust, because we know them. The more we know them, the higher our level of trust is with them. So this brings me to Jesus. How do we trust Jesus so we can ultimately bear the fruit of faithfulness? My dear ones, we get to know Him. How do we get to know Him? We read Scripture, we must know the Bible. We must know what it says about the ways we live this life. We must read the stories and the history and see the real things God did for his people. Through this we can build trust. If we keep going and Hebrews 11 We see faith in action pointing us back to Genesis, we see faith changing the game. Verse three says By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, and it continues to describe faith through the verses that follow. By faith Noah built the ark. By faith Abraham obeyed. By faith Sara conceived a child though she was well past childbearing years. By faith Isaac blessed his sons. By faith, Jacob blessed Joseph sons. By faith Moses’ parents hid him so that he would live. By faith God's chosen people pass through the Red Sea. By faith, the walls of Jericho tumbled down. And there are so many more instances that by faith, God's people received God's best! From Rahab to Gideon and Samson and David and on and on and on, throughout history. Hebrews 12 picks up with “Therefore since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance. The race marked before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.” It then tells us to consider Jesus so that we will not grow weary and lose heart. Our dear old testament friends only got to see part of the promise. Friends were the lucky ones, we get to see the promise fully. I look at the Old Testament stories, and I think if they can trust in God, and they only saw part of the story, surely we can trust in Him when we get to see it fully. I look to our Old Testament friends, and I borrow their confidence some days, I promise you that. The days when trusting and faithfulness seems hard when I can't see the inside of that mystery box, but I know I have to put my hand in anyway. We only need the faith of a mustard seed. Just a moment, a moment of courage to take the first step and God's got the rest. There's another story that I think about when I think about bearing the fruit of faithfulness in Matthew 8:23 we find Jesus and he's getting into a boat with the disciples and a storm comes out of nowhere the waves are crashing over the boat and Jesus is like fast asleep like sawing logs totally asleep. The disciples are terrified they go to wake Jesus up and verse 26 happens and it literally, like every time, like just gets me right in the heart. Here are the disciples they're literally telling him like save us we're gonna drown they're like, Dude, you have to wake up I mean, they probably didn't call Jesus dude but I I might have I've probably called Jesus dude a time or two but they're like, we're gonna drown like, literally, this is it. We're gonna go down and Jesus drops the mic with his reply and says, “You have little faith. Why are you so afraid?” Jesus then got up and he calmed the storm completely. He had total and absolute control in the middle of a storm yet how easy it was for his disciples to forget and freak out. How many times has this happened to us? Our situation seems hopeless. And instead of standing firm in faith, we waver and we freak out thinking surely this thing we're going through is going to capsize our life and let's be honest, sometimes terrible things happen. And they actually do capsize our life, taking our lives, flipping them upside down, leaving them absolutely unrecognizable. In these really hard moments, I imagine our Sweet Jesus taking our face in his hands. And so lovingly saying, “My child, you of little faith. Why are you so afraid?” What did we get so afraid of friends? With Jesus in our boat, we don't have to be afraid anymore. Our faith in Him changes everything. Friends, the amount of our faith is in direct correlation to who God is for us and what he can do in our lives. What are we believing about the mightiness of our God? We can grow the fruit of faithfulness when we spend time in Scripture, knowing what God says to be true. Life is going to come at us either way. And if we don't know the truth of what God says, we aren't going to be able to trust that he's going to do what he said he was going to do. Knowing his scripture and His Word and His truth is foundational to bearing the fruit of faithfulness. My sweet listeners, life doesn't have to be a mystery party box. We don't have to go through this world afraid. We have to choose faithfulness, again and again and again. Friends I hope you enjoyed episode six of season three. I hope that you begin to feel and see and taste the incredible fruit of faithfulness in your life. Come back next time let's throw more encouragement around like confetti. But be careful, if you get too close, you just might get some on you. And remember there is always always always something to be thankful for. Ciao! Thank you for joining me, Desireé Melfi Bozzo, for this episode of Life Out Loud. I would love to hear from you. Leave me a comment. Tell me what topics you want to talk about and how you take your coffee. If you enjoyed what you heard, text a friend the link share it on social media. Or if you're interested in becoming a supporter, be-bop over to my webpage life out loud.me and sponsor a cup of coffee that keeps this podcast fueled. Until next time sweet listeners!