Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Concerning Faith...

Boy, when God decides to download, He really downloads! Yesterday morning during my reading and devotion time He was revealing to me regarding level of faith, and the action on His part that comes accordingly. Last night, He struck an entirely different and yet completely related chord concerning faith, and what the surrender involved really involves. {does that make any sense? I hope so!}

The Bible is filled with stories and testimony in regards to this subject. I'd like to focus on just a few. Because what I feel like God showed me, and very "loudly" reminded me of is this:

Truly walking in faith means surrendering not only the circumstance you're in...but the outcome as well. It's not just trusting God right now, it's trusting God then, too.

Abraham comes to mind when being challenged in the area of faith, and total surrender. In Genesis we are given the account of when God instructed him to prove his faithfulness to Him and take his only son, his beloved son, the promised son he had waited 100 years to have - and sacrifice him on an altar. Um, WOW. I can't even imagine. Whether or not Abraham had those thoughts we'll never know, but what we do know is that he obeyed, and took his son up the mountain, built the altar, reassuring his son, "God will provide the lamb," and was willing to obey to the point of ultimate sacrifice. He put his TOTAL trust in the Lord, even if that meant the outcome was the heartbreaking sacrifice of his son. {thankfully, it didn't!}

Hebrews 11 explains this act a bit. Verse 19 says in the NLT "Abraham reasoned that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again."

Abraham's faith wasn't in God to meet him in one circumstance or another, it was in God. Period, end of story, that's it. God had promised Abraham a nation through Isaac, and that settled it. He not only surrendered the now, he surrendered the future.

I think sometimes when praying, we can get to that point where we truly believe that God can bring us through something, but we often spend time scripting what that outcome looks like in our minds. Not because we're trying to pretend we're God, but because we're emotional, fleshly driven control freaks. {Or at least I am!} And this, my friends, is an incorrect way of thinking, and as a result,  of praying. 

This isn't a correction or criticism, but rather an exhortation and reminder to continue to press on and pray on, standing in faith when storms come, and remember that we're surrendering not just the storm, but the aftermath to God, trusting in Him to 'provide the lamb' when all else seems hopeless. Remember, when Jesus commanded Peter to walk on water, and Peter believed that through Him he could, he did. It was only when he quit trusting that he started to drown. Take the step of faith, even if you're only shown the next few feet ahead, and trust that God is there to meet you at the end, whatever that may be.

I'll be doing the same.
And until then, I'll be laughing.


Monday, April 22, 2013

According to...

Something I've discovered I love about reading through the entire Bible every year is the fresh revelation brought out in passages I must have seen a hundred times before. This morning it was a simple sentence, read in Matthew 9:29 "Then He touched their eyes and said, "Because of your faith, it will happen."" (NLT)

Did the light of heaven shine down with a heavenly chorus just then? For me, it did. I honestly don't even want to guess how many times I've read "your faith has made you well" in my life, because I know it's a lot, but also because it's kind of embarrassing to admit that my life does not reflect the knowledge and fruit that it should if this is truly written on my heart.

How many times do you feel God has promised something - whether it be a miracle of healing or provision, or a calling you feel He's placed on your life that you're waiting for the door to open to - and yet it's just not happening? You feel almost as if you're in some sort of limbo, unsure of where to go, what to do or say, balancing precariously on the line of the seen and the unseen. If you're at this spot of waiting, please allow me to ask a simple, yet difficult question. Where is your faith at in regards to this? Not faith in God, or in Jesus as savior, so to speak, but in the power of God regardless of the circumstance. The New Testament is filled with miracles, and lots of them are tagged with phrases that indicate that the parties in need got out of the way so Jesus could take care of business - according to their faith, because of their faith...

God meets us at our points of need, and His power is able to work in our lives according to the level of faith we have in Him. We don't serve a somewhat powerful God, we serve THE ALL POWERFUL GOD. There is literally nothing He cannot do, if we're willing to truly walk in faith - fully surrender ourselves and our situations {and that means the results too!} - and trust that He will move on our behalf!

We have to get out of the way, and we need to get our unbelief out of the way, so our God can move, work, and above all look at us and say, "Because of YOUR faith, it WILL happen."

And I truly believe that it will. I myself am standing on a promise that I believe with my whole heart God has spoken. But it's not my job to solve it, fix it, or say exactly what God's will for the situation is. It is simply my job to trust Him, and to turn up my level of faith so that it meets the level of action needed, and to get out of the way and let God be God. Because at the end of the day, that is the one thing that never changes.

Until next time, I'll still be laughing,