Forward Today: Fearless faith

Rooted and Growing Evangelism workshop at the Fearless Faith Revival. (Photo: The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California on Facebook)

Dear friends in Christ,

Last weekend, I visited the Diocese of Northern California to speak about evangelism at their revival, Fearless Faith. The name of the revival got me thinking.

Fearless faith could suggest that we practice our faith without fear. It’s tempting to find ourselves limiting how we practice our faith, as individuals or congregations, out of fear. We might worry about money, or what people will think of us, or whether some new ministry will succeed or fail.

What if we practiced our faith boldly? There’s no reason not to invite people to our churches. There’s often more money available than we think. Even if some new ministry doesn’t take off, we will learn something—so there’s rarely a total failure. Fearless faith is closer to the adventure that the Gospels suggest when we choose to follow Jesus.

But there’s another way to read that title, Fearless Faith. As we just heard last Sunday in the epistle, perfect love casts out fear. Our culture is bombarded by messages peddling fear. “Be afraid of those people.” “Be afraid of that place.” “Be afraid that you might not have enough money.” “Be afraid that your appearance is not sufficiently beautiful.” It’s nonsense, and it’s antithetical to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

In faith, we will realize we don’t need to be afraid of anyone or any place. We will realize there is enough. We will realize that we don’t need to “look more beautiful” because we are all made in the image and likeness of God, and nothing could be more beautiful than that!

So if we fill our hearts in faith with the love of Jesus Christ, we will immunize ourselves against the bombardment of fear.

I am always working on practicing and believing a fearless faith. I hope you are, too. Be not afraid!

Yours faithfully,

Scott Gunn's signature

Scott Gunn
Executive Director

More from our ministry:

Fearless evangelism in your congregation: Signs of Life

Practical guidance for ministry: Vestry Resource Guide

Revive your faith with daily prayer: Forward Day by Day

Read through the Gospels one passage at a time: The Bible Challenge series