“Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1).
Faith is the one thing that we need to please God as it states in Hebrews 11:6, “And without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
In my experience faith is closely related to obedience and trust. I have been walking with the Lord for about five years. And I think the biggest thing that I have learned is the idea that faith and obedience are a must in walking out our salvation with God. It is funny that it seems so simple, but when push comes to shove, sometimes our own comfort and lack of trust seems like a way better choice than whatever God asks us to do because we can’t see what is on the other side of what He is asking of us.
I am going to get pretty vulnerable. My name is Devon Alexa. When I was 19, I was trafficked from Southern California to Las Vegas. Five years ago, I was introduced to the Jesus and for me, it took an encounter with His presence that convinced me of His realness. After that moment, I knew that I was going to give my life fully to the Lord, no looking back. And frankly at that point in my life, there wasn’t much to lose – I was just living to survive.
Meeting Jesus was the best thing that had ever happened to me.
Throughout my journey with God, I have had the best times in my life and some of the hardest. But through the ups and the downs I have chosen to never give up on Jesus – even in the times I haven’t been able to see the light. For example, the first two years of my walk with God were amazing: full of blessings and freedom. I was the happiest I had ever been in my entire life. I had amazing friends was doing ministry and loving life. About two years into my walk with God, I decided to pursue my first dating relationship with a Christian man. He was such an awesome guy and was intentional about pursuing my heart. I remember when he asked me to be his girlfriend although my response was “I’m scared,” I was overjoyed at the same time. I couldn’t believe that someone like him could like me.
As the relationship progressed my heart for him and a vision for our relationship grew. Then one day before we were going to go on a date I heard the audible voice of God for the first time. In that moment I knew God was telling me that the guy I was dating was not my husband. Most people would have gone to their bedroom repented and broke it off. Right? Well, unfortunately, I doubted that I heard God’s voice and continued to date him. In my mind he was the best – I had never experienced someone treating me with the honor and respect that he did. As I made the decision to stay in the relationship I was bombarded with confusion and lies, like: It’s because of my past I could never be with someone like that, or it’s the enemy because we have a mighty call together. As I continued to doubt the voice of God and fight for the relationship, things got worse. I began to become jealous and spiraled into my first experience with depression. During this time I would pray and beg God that if He wasn’t the one to have him to break up with me. God whispered, “You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.” He was calling me to be courageous.
Eventually, I realized that things were not working and I finally obeyed. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life – and I have been through some difficult things. It’s easy to walk around and say, “I trust God and He is the Lord over my life, etc.” But what happens when he asks you to surrender something that looks good to you?
Through this experience, I was confronted with my beliefs of God and who He was to me. If I truly, in my heart, believed that God had the best for me and that he was GOOD ALL OF THE TIME, then I would have obeyed immediately and saved myself and the other person involved a lot of pain.
Although hard, I am grateful for that season, because it prepared my heart to receive the healing that it so desperately needed and launched me into a deeper relationship with God.
As I have grown in my relationship with God I have learned to listen and obey quicker because as I have stepped out in faith God has always been faithful. It is scary at times but always worth it. I have never regretted listening to God. It’s funny because usually, the things He wants for me are the things that I truly want in my heart but are unaware of at the time. He knows our desires more than we do.
Six things I have learned from this experience.
1. Obey immediately (Even if you think you hear God step out in FAITH. God will reward you with a greater measure of peace and it’s an invitation for an upgrade in trust).
2. Know your values.
3. Believe God has your best intentions in mind (He knows you better than you know yourself).
4. Trust that God is good all of the time (He only knows how to be good, he is good all of the time, rain or shine, no matter what you think or how you feel He is good).
5. Abide in the God who says, “My peace is priceless.”
6. Become whole before dating (learn to love yourself and love what God loves – YOU).
My favorite verse is Philippians 3:13: “Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”. Not that I am perfect, but one thing I do is forget the things of the past and press forward to the prize of the upward call of Jesus Christ.
No matter what you are facing never give up. Remember that there is always something good on the other side of trusting God. He is faithful!
My name is Devon Alexa, I am 26 and am passionate about people walking in freedom and life and finding the greatness that is placed inside of them. I believe that there is hope for everyone. I was trafficked when I was 19 and through Jesus, I have been set free. I love coffee, spicy food, and I love long car rides and plane rides. If the only thing I learn in this life is love then this life has been a success.