Fumbles, Flops, And Faith Overflowing

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I love how the Bible doesn’t give us heroes of the faith all monochromatic, with Photoshop touch-ups and filters applied—looking all shiny and perfect.

Instead, the Bible gives us heroes portrayed in full color, with every blemish, crack, and stain left in plain sight. These heroes are known as much for their fumbles and flops as they are for their overflowing faith.

They have patina—that green tarnish that forms naturally because of exposure to the elements.

Hebrews chapter 11 lists some of the great champions of the faith…

Heroes like Noah—who trusted God, built an ark, saved his family, and was used by God to start things over. He’s a champion of the faith.

And Noah had a drinking problem—not way back in the day, but actually, this is one of the last things the Bible tells us about Noah. Fumbles, flops, and faith overflowing.

Heroes like Abraham who followed God’s call to pick-up and launch into unknown territory. He went—he trusted God. He’s a champion of the faith.

He also lied to save his bacon. Twice. And this wasn’t years before he trusted God and stepped out in faith—it was deep in the middle of it. Fumbles, flops, and faith overflowing.

This list of flawed heroes goes on: Sarah, Jacob, Moses, Rahab the prostitute, Samson, David…

Their portraits aren’t shiny and perfect. Instead, they are displayed as they are: imperfect and marked by patina. Fumbles, flops, and faith overflowing.

So, what about us?

Are we shiny and perfect?

I won’t speak for you, but I’ll be quick to identify my own patina. I don’t just have fumbles and flops from days long-ago—I have them now, consistently, predictably, repeatedly. I’m a piece of work, and I’m a man of faith. How ya like that?

The book of James encourages us…

Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly that no rain would fall, none fell for three and a half years! Then, when he prayed again, the sky sent down rain and the earth began to yield its crops. —James 5.17, 18 NLT

I hope you caught those first few words of that verse.

Elijah was as human as we are.

Covered with patina.

Fumbles, flops, and faith overflowing.

This so encourages me. God’s not looking for shiny, perfect people.

Instead, He uses the ordinary, the flawed, the scarred, and the stained. He uses people…

People like us.


imagine life overflowing 2013 work no 2

I am a husband, father, pastor, leader & reader. I love God, love people & love life.

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