Thoughtful faith dares to ask questions, probing into implications and applications not immediately obvious. When we pause to consider what common spiritual slogans might look like in daily living, we practice thoughtful faith. For example, we wonder what it really means to “glorify God,” or “offer a sacrifice of praise.” (I hope to reflect on these and other phrases in future blogs). Thoughtful faith wrestles with cognitive tensions found frequently in Scripture. How can God be sovereign and yet hold people responsible for their choices? Why pray when God determines the future?
Thoughtful faith also tries to apply Biblical truths to all areas of life. In other words, it’s one thing to see the fullness of the spirit in our lives when engaging in things like prayer, witnessing, loving our neighbor, or resisting temptation. But what does it mean to be filled with the spirit while studying for an exam, writing a paper, making a presentation, doing research, or working at any occupation?
Again, I hope to explore these issues through future blogs.
“Faithful thinking” allows the truths of scripture and the reality of God’s presence to fly as a banner above all intellectual activity. We study, think, discuss, write, etc., all under the transcendent principle that God is the revealer of all truth.
And this should yield humble diligence. We are humbled by the limits of our own minds compared to God’s omniscience and wisdom. We are diligent to inquire because God has given us the minds to do so.
Together, thoughtful faith and faithful thinking stand in sharp contrast to alternatives vying for attention today. We eschew the arrogance of the modernists who exalt reason above revelation. We resist the despair of postmodernists who punt all hope of ever knowing anything with certainty.
Christian discipleship of the mind is a crying need in our world today. May God raise up many who can bring renewal to his church through thoughtful faith and faithful thinking.