Sometimes the idea of “faith” can feel a little mysterious and hard to grasp. After all, what is it? And how do you get it — or get more of it? Well, just like science can explain so many of the mysterious and hard-to-grasp things in the world around us, there are answers for many of the mysterious and hard-to-grasp things about faith, too.
You’ll learn in science class that “catalysts” are interactions that create big changes and transformations. In the same way, Scripture shows us certain change-making “catalysts” are necessary for the transformation of our faith and the faith of others.
In this four-week series from Hebrews, we’ll discover that Jesus is the catalyst for a new relationship with God, faith is a catalyst for action, the faith of others can be a catalyst on our journey, we can be a catalyst for change.
JESUS IS THE CATALYST FOR A NEW RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD
Some transformations are pretty immediate and explosive, you know like when you drop Mentos into Diet Coke. You’ve seen the video, right?
That transformation is both immediate and e x p l o s i v e ! Well that’s the kind of change a lot of us expect to see when we start following Jesus. And sometimes it happens just like that, but sometimes it’s slower and takes more time to see the change that comes with following Jesus.
We must trust, however, that that change is indeed taking place, even if we don’t see it. Because of Jesus, our relationship with God is so much more personal and close, and we have immediate access to God’s love and grace. If you ever doubt God’s ability to change things, remember what Jesus has already changed. Because of him, your relationship with God has changed and there’s more to come because: Jesus is the catalyst for a new relationship with God.
Week 1: 11/2 & 11/6 – Allie Redmond
Scripture: Hebrews 4:14-16 | Matthew 27:51 | John 3:16-17
FAITH IS A CATALYST FOR ACTION
So we’ll talk about the word catalyst and even the science behind it, but don’t worry, we won’t be doing science experiments. Instead we will talk about how a catalyst is something that creates change, or speeds up a changes that’s already happening. And in our faith we often wish we could speed things up.
Well, in the Bible, the book of Hebrews has something to say about this. It gives us this really long list of people who “lived by faith” – heroes of the faith like Abraham, Sarah, Noah, Joseph and more. All of these people confidently put their faith in God, even when they weren’t sure of the future. But they didn’t just have faith in God, they demonstrated their faith with their obedience and their lives. And that’s the point. Faith isn’t just what we believe, it’s what we do. Faith is a catalyst for action.
Week 2: 11/9 & 11/13 – Daniel “stallion” Stevanus and Chad Myers
Scripture: Hebrews 11:1-22 | James 1:22 | 2 Corinthians 5:7
THE FAITH OF OTHERS CAN BE A CATALYST ON OUR JOURNEY
We’ve all been there, when we try to change because of someone we like or someone we admire has influenced us. Maybe it was finally watching that show your friend wouldn’t stop talking about, or trying a weird new fashion trend after someone at school tried it first. If you have ever been influenced by people around us, then congrats, you have experienced a catalyst.
These kinds of catalyst exist when it comes to faith as well. And in the book of Hebrews we get a long list of people -heroes of the faith! People who went before us and showed us what faith can look like. These heroes are in Scripture, but they are also the people in our lives today, if we know what to look for. And we can grow knowing that the faith of others can be a catalyst on our journey.
Week 3: 11/16 & 11/20 – Allie Redmond
Scripture: Exodus 3:10-12 | Hebrews 10:24; 11:29-40; 12:1-2
WE CAN BE A CATALYST FOR CHANGE
We’ve talked a lot about catalysts that change us. We’ve talked about others who have changed us, our circumstances, our lives or even our faith. But what about you? Do you think you’ve ever been a catalyst in someone else’s life or faith? Do you think you could be?
The author of Hebrews sure thinks you could. In ch 10, in fact, he says that because Jesus has totally transformed our relationship with God, our next step is to share his love with the people around us. Both with our words, as well as with our actions.
Hebrews tells us to help each other grow, spend time together, encourage each other, take care of the people everyone else seems to have forgotten or overlooked and protect people who are hurting and being taken advantage of. And when we love others like that, we can be a catalyst for change.
Week 4: 11/30 & 12/4 – Daniel “stallion” Stevanus
Scripture: Hebrews 10:19-25; 12:1; 13:1-3 | James 2:26