Cash Luna, renowned pastor and author, presents his new book, NOT BY SIGHT, an anthology on faith, based on 2 Corinthians 5:7.
The foundation of our life of faith are the promises and teachings that our Father shares with us in his Word. He wants us to walk by faith and not by sight because our senses can deceive us. Believe in the Lord and declare your blessings in your life, because you have dreams to achieve and miracles to witness. Live by faith!
To walk by faith it takes courage and humility because we must close our eyes to the pessimism of the world and let ourselves be guided by the promises of blessing from our heavenly Father.
Living by faith, contrary to what some believe, is a matter of higher minds with criteria to speak and act according to what is really accurate, the Word of God. Let us dare to challenge our faith at all times, since it is the most powerful and effective tool when we need to believe for daily sustenance and also when we need to believe by extraordinary miracles of healing and provision.
|Publisher:||Nelson, Thomas, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)|
About the Author
Pastor Carlos Luna is affectionately called "Cash" by his family because as a small child he could not pronounce his own name. He graduated from college with cum laude honors and a degree in information systems administration from the Francisco Marroquín University in the City of Guatemala and in 2002 he earned a doctorate in pastoral ministries from California Christian University. He was a dedicated businessman until God called him into the ministry. In 1994 the Lord Jesus called him to pastor "Casa de Dios (House of God)" together with his wife Sonia. An experience of the glory of God one Sunday evening during a church service was the beginning of a powerful movement of the Holy Spirit, "Nights of Glory." Pastor Luna has held crusades of healing and miracles in several countries throughout the Americas. Today, "Casa de Dios" in Guatemala is a thriving church with more than twenty-thousand active members and organized by means of small groups.
Read an Excerpt
When a twenty-three-year-old decides to marry the woman he loves, his beautiful nineteen-year-old girlfriend, he has everything going for him: his ability to start a new company, his creativity, his ironclad will, his passion, and especially his clear desire to serve the Lord. One could say he's not missing anything and a bright and fulfilling future awaits him. Years later, that young man would say, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that his dreams had come true. He raised a beautiful family, followed the vision God gave him, and established a ministry that gives all the praise and glory to God. However, the road there wasn't easy. Despite the clarity concerning his calling and all the Lord's support, there were moments of uncertainty he had to battle, as well as heartaches in every area, from the simplest ones, such as providing for his home, to more sensitive ones like character assassination.
Just recently married and in the process of starting a new life together, the young couple rented a small house. Their wedding had been nothing short of a true miracle of provision from start to finish, blessed with many gifts. Their excitement overflowed at the sight of all those different packages. There were large boxes as well as small ones, all wrapped in white paper with beautiful designs. It was like a special Christmas and hand in hand the new couple gave thanks for so much blessing. Some presents were exceptional. For example, the parents of the bride had given them a set of cutlery made of sterling silver. Wow! Yes, I know. They couldn't imagine when they would ever use them, but they would. However, putting first things first, they needed food on the table, and that's exactly what he focused on. In fact, when he decided to get married after hearing the Lord tell him, "It's time to get engaged and start your life as a couple," a knife salesman visited his workplace and in faith he bought a set of knives for his future household. Upon receiving them, he said, "Okay, Lord, I'll obey. I'm going to get married. I've bought the first thing for our home. Could you please provide everything else."
Being a young husband, he decided to become an insurance broker, which would allow him a flexible schedule that wouldn't interrupt his service for the Lord. And indeed, he did well, convincing potential customers of his product with a special grace. In time, he became the best salesman on the team, to the point of winning awards. However, even these achievements didn't do away with a measure of doubt, or perhaps an anxiety, for wanting things to happen more quickly.
I'm not sure, however one day I left home ... that is, this young man left for work greatly distressed over his finances, wondering how he could provide his wife the home he had promised her, and how the dreams they had visualized together would become a reality. Right at that moment he heard the Father say, "If I gave you a set of sterling silver cutlery, can't I also provide the food to eat with it?" It was such a logical question and loving promise at the same time, that the young man — that is, I — lost it and started weeping uncontrollably. Of course! Perhaps I didn't understand the full extent of what God was saying, but it was a lesson in faith, just like many more that were on the way.
People often ask me how to live by faith in God. And my reply is simple and complex at the same time. I always sum it up with this phrase: "Give yourself to the Lord," because it covers many areas, from knowing His Word — where we find our identity and code of conduct — to our attitude in every situation in life, be it large or small. For example, the well-known Lord's Prayer is a complete declaration of faith. Right from the opening statement — Our Father — we understand that we are his children, his heirs, and official citizens of a kingdom that operates under different laws and standards than those of this world. That is the key!
It is along with the model prayer left by Jesus that we declare, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven." Many times, however, we fail to grasp the sheer magnitude of what this request encompasses: that we might have peace, that good might prevail over evil, that justice be established, and to be free of all worries and anxieties. In short, to live our life on Earth as we would in heaven. Right?
To live out these ideal, supernatural conditions, we must first learn something about God's system, which obviously is totally different from this world's system. It's not simple to achieve because it implies a willingness to renew our understanding and do away with what this world has taught us, first and foremost with the total conviction in our minds and hearts that he truly does love and care for us. Having faith in God means that the wonderful truth of his Fatherhood must become the foundation of our lives to such an extent that it totally transforms how we see things around us. As his children, just like in any other family, we have both benefits and responsibilities to fulfill.
God lays out a totally different system in his Word than the one this world offers. He asks us to totally rely on him before any other option mankind can offer. He never tells us to seek a friend or a loved one when difficult circumstances arise, but rather to seek him first! Why? Because it's always in the middle of a problem that we seek out first those whom we trust the most. If we choose to live a life of faith, seeking God with humble hearts should be our first response when facing any adverse or unexpected circumstance.
Out of all I could teach you through my testimony, it would be precisely that God is the very pillar of my existence in every situation, always, in every moment. God has always been my first option! Believe me, he has never let me down. I have had to learn, think, feel, and act according to what his Word teaches, and that is how I became an ardent reader of the Bible. And my wholehearted desire is to share these simple but transformational truths that I've discovered.
If we go back to the beginning in the book of Genesis, we see that Adam and Eve were created to live in a wonderful system, the Garden of Eden, designed for them to enjoy and manage. However, they lost their focus and sinned by listening to the serpent's advice and eating the fruit of the tree of good and evil. As a result, they were forced into a system totally different from the one God had prepared for them. This world's system was designed for the Adam who was removed from paradise and took on the unredeemed, fallen nature of man. As of that moment, he had to start earning his keep with sweat and hard work, a shift that affected all of us. But then Jesus came! He offered us the possibility of partaking of His divine nature and grant us access, once again, into God's original, perfect system!
This issue of disobedience made me think. If you look at it carefully, Adam focused on the one thing he wasn't allowed to do, not appreciating every other thing he could do and enjoy in the garden. Now, was that piece of fruit worth throwing all of God's system down the drain? Of course, not! But when we focus on what we don't have or can't have, we end up wasting all the other opportunities that we do have within reach.
When people decide to give their lives to the Lord, they sometimes lament those things they obviously would need to leave behind, such as drinking, smoking, partying, and lying, totally overlooking the fact that these things are designed to harm body and spirit. Therefore, God desires for us to seek after that which is good, pleasing, and perfect unto him. Have you ever noticed how in this world's system we only find pleasure in things that are harmful? Is that ironic or what? It's precisely because of these contradictions that God asks us to let him renew every area of our lives to see things from his perspective. So, we can start enjoying what he's made readily available to us by changing our lifestyles and aligning them with his system.
Of course, every change in life is challenging; but this is precisely when we need to be strong and allow our faith in him to prevail over all the other things this world presents to us as attractive. As I've always said, true intelligence means letting yourself be led by someone smarter than you, and who better than our Creator? Another example is how the Lord asks us to be humble when someone offends us, as opposed to the world's solution of payback! So, what do we need to do if we want to live by faith?
To begin, we need to obey what God has defined as right and not let ourselves be controlled by our human nature and instinctive urges. When we truly start to live by faith, our Father begins the work of perfecting us, comforting us, and filling us with his peace. He strengthens our wills to the point that we can close our eyes and walk in trust, following his instructions alone.
The Best System
From my point of view, the first step to living by faith is to recognize that God's system is the best and to be willing to obey it. This opens the door to a life full of expectation, along with the ability to dream and imagine. It's like being born again. Born again, however, into a life in which we are direct heirs to the promises we find in his Word. If you take that step, I guarantee that he will have wonderful surprises in store for you.
Because God is our Creator, he knows exactly what to say regarding how everything works. He has the power and authority to tell us how to act and what's best for us. He loves us and desires for us to be fulfilled in every area of our lives! If you want an ally with influence, who better than God? It's like taking your vehicle in for service. Sure, you can take it to any mechanic, but nothing tops taking it directly to the dealership where they have all the original parts and systems needed to fix it. Don't try to fix your life with this world's flawed system. Follow the instructions from the manufacturer, our Creator, who knows us inside and out. He is the only one who can heal you, restore you, and prosper you. God's system and this world's system are always at odds with each other, which is why after giving your life to him, you will also need to change your manner of thinking. If you draw near to him, you'll be renewed to live by faith!
What are some of the foundational principles of his kingdom? Communicating with him and experiencing forgiveness are some of the basic ones, which is why he asks us to pray at all times, with the right attitude, putting aside all anger and bitterness, and forgiving other people's offenses.
Jesus taught his disciples much about prayer because effective communication is vital in order to switch systems. After all, you can't really love and have faith in someone whom you don't know. On one occasion Jesus taught his disciples about the need to pray without ceasing by using the parable of a persistent widow who kept asking a judge to intervene on her behalf, even to the point of tiring him until he did. The widow didn't employ this world's system, but rather Jesus' kingdom system, which teaches us to persist in faith until we get an answer.
The world says, "Use my system, find someone with influence or someone you can bribe to get things done." On the other hand, God says, "Use my system, I know what I'm saying. Show me your faith, call on me day and night, ask and act correctly." No one has as much power to help you as the Lord, the Judge par excellence, who grants you direct access to his throne of grace for help in time of need. His Word says that he will not delay in answering, but above all he needs to see your faith. If you don't get what you desire, it's because you are taking too long in asking him for it! Remember that with God nothing is impossible, which means that everything is possible if you believe and ask him!
Our God is clear when he says that we'll receive everything we ask of him. Of course, that does not include anything in the area of sin. If you're connected to him, you will know that you can't ask him for something that will bring you harm or that will separate you from him. But everything else is acceptable. So, what are you waiting for? Start asking! And if you want to, try asking him for something that's "not so good." You'll see, he will answer, but in this case it's obviously going to be a great big no! But there's no harm in trying.
Who cares what others might say. Let them pray their own way, but if you ask in faith it will be done. This is what our Father teaches us. I am convinced that it is true because I've asked him in faith and he has come through every time, especially when he knows that we will give him the glory and the praise. Jesus teaches us to ask for everything in his name. He has chosen us and wants us to bear fruit in which the Father is glorified, and that occurs when your requests are answered, and every yoke of sickness, poverty, pride, separation, and disappointment is destroyed.
When you operate in Adam's system, you look for natural solutions. When faced with a sickness, the first thing you do is see if the medical insurance will cover the treatment. But if you operate in God's system, nothing will disturb or trouble you because you know that Jesus' sacrifice has made you whole. When it comes to your finances, no matter how many business deals might fall through, he has promised to provide for you supernaturally. You'll receive calls from people who will want to bless you with work and opportunities for your provision. Pray for those open doors, and in the meantime, tell the Father, "I know that everything's going to work out, because I'm trusting in your system."
We must be guileless as children before the Lord, relying entirely on his power, grace, and lovingkindness. I have experienced this in my ministry. When I have been obedient, he takes control of things, provides the resources and prepares the way for every undertaking to benefit many in which he receives the glory and honor. Begin to access his kingdom system that operates supernaturally through faith and do not rely on this world's system.
Seek to walk righteously before him and there will be no obstacle to hold you back from your prayers. It's not about being perfect, but about having a heart according to what he asks. Choose to live by faith today! Dive in deep into his kingdom!
King George V, the father of shy and stuttering Prince Albert Frederick Arthur George, without even knowing it highlighted certain traits in his son that made it even more difficult for him to communicate. I can just imagine how relieved the king must have felt thinking to himself, "I'm so glad it's my firstborn Edward who'll succeed me on the throne and not George." He never imagined the possibility, but less than a year later Edward would in fact relinquish that privilege. Many blame his commoner girlfriend for the decision, but the path Edward embraced in life demonstrates that the relationship was perhaps merely an excuse, because he was not ready for the responsibility of kingship, nor did he want it.
Indeed, Prince George wasn't the ideal candidate for that position. In fact, his mood swings and speech impediments were some of the worst defects any leader could have. Despite that, he was humble and the way was paved for others to help him in his weakness. Against all odds, he achieved a level of success that granted him worldwide fame and a place in history.
We need to accept our human nature and recognize our flaws with humility. Humility is a vital element in our Father's kingdom. For example, God urges us to confess our faults and to pray for one another. An attitude devoid of arrogance is ideal to prepare us with willing hearts to draw near to him for effective conversations. The Bible says that the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
Excerpted from "Not by Sight"
Copyright © 2018 Cash Luna.
Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
I The King's Speech 1
Chapter 1 Supernatural 5
Chapter 2 Imperfect 14
Chapter 3 Heirs 21
II Star Wars 31
Chapter 4 More than Conquerors 35
Chapter 5 The Best Weapon 44
Chapter 6 All Power 50
Chapter 7 Don't Overlook Your Path 56
III Stroke of Genius 67
Chapter 8 Powerful Words 70
Chapter 9 The Martha School 78
Chapter 10 A Mustard Seed 87
Chapter 11 Ask and Declare 93
IV Temple 107
Chapter 12 Levels of Faith 111
Chapter 13 Changing Your Level 122
Chapter 14 Faith with Authority 134
V The Eagle 145
Chapter 15 Logical and Illogical 149
Chapter 16 In the Process 160
Chapter 17 Moments…and More Moments 169
VI The Perfect Game 177
Chapter 18 Too Easy to Be True 181
Chapter 19 Follow Their Faith 190
Chapter 20 How Shall This Be? 199
VII The Hundred-Foot Journey 213
Chapter 21 The Best Seasoning 217
Chapter 22 A New Season 229
Chapter 23 Corporate Faith 243
VIII Hook 249
Chapter 24 It's All Worth it 253
Chapter 25 From Anxiety to Victory 264
Chapter 26 Fearless 277
IX The Greatest Game 291
Chapter 27 Write Your Own Psalm 295
Chapter 28 Gifts 306
X The Blind Side 317
Chapter 29 The Main Ingredient 321
Chapter 30 The Vehicle 329