This January marks Terrie’s and my thirty-third New Year at Lancaster Baptist Church. A few weeks ago, we were able to have over several families from our church who were here when we came or who we were able to lead to the Lord in those first couple years. Their faithfulness over the decades is such an encouragement to us.
In this season of the year, when many of us are focused on our newly-set goals and investing our energy in developing new habits, it’s easy to overlook the obvious—that there is great value in consistency and faithfulness over time.
We all know that God blesses faithfulness, but sometimes we forget how significant those blessings are. Here are five blessings that come through faithfulness:
1. Faithfulness develops faith.
When you think back to what challenged your faith in the earliest days of your walk with the Lord compared to what challenges it now, usually you can see growth.
This is because faithfulness is an exercise of faith. And faith is a muscle that grows over time. Do you want more faith? Keep being faithful.
As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.—Colossians 2:6–7
2. Faithfulness proves the reality of God.
When a Christian continues forward despite opposition and setbacks, it sends a powerful message to others that God is trustworthy and able to sustain those who follow Him.
Think of Paul and Silas and the Philippian jailer. The jailer didn’t ask, “What must I do to be saved?” in Paul’s first days of ministry at Philippi. It was after the jailer watched Paul and Silas’ response to persecution and their steadfastness through it that he asked them for spiritual help.
Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?—Acts 16:29–30
3. Faithfulness builds families and relationships.
What a blessing it has been over the years to see families in our church who have remained faithful to the Lord and stayed in the church where God was working in their lives. I’ve watched God strengthen marriages and develop the spiritual roots of young people through parents who have remained faithful.
Faithfulness also build relationships within the church. As you serve the Lord with the same people year after year, the depth of friendship and fellowship in that relationship grows.
Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.—Hebrews 10:25
4. Faithfulness gives a clear conscience.
When you are faithful even if your service for the Lord doesn’t have the visible results you desired, even if circumstances go differently than you hoped, you can have a clear conscience. And you can know God is working in ways you cannot see.
And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house,—Acts 20:20
5. Faithfulness produces fruit.
No farmer quits in disappointment at not seeing crops the day after he plants his fields. He knows it takes time. Similarly, fruit in the Christian life—both the fruit of the Spirit and the fruit of souls—takes time to multiply. And those who are faithful reap the benefit of seeing it developed.
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.—Galatians 6:9