And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him. Hebrews 11:6
To me, faith is the result of eliminating doubts by simply reflecting on what God has done for you and others.
In other words, faith shows itself when you are able to confront your doubts with a counter narrative based on God’s promises.
I can recall exercising this type of faith when I broke my leg in 3 places back in December 2014. The break was so severe that it was questionable whether I would regain complete movement in my leg/ankle. The drugs were so strong that I could not manage my law firm. And since I could not work, I had no income for a year.
In this broken state, I was confronted daily with negative thoughts that if left unchecked would impede my ability to heal and thrive.
Thanks be to God that my parents are strong prayer warriors. And they (along with my family, and my church) prayed for me. They asked God for healing and He answered them saying, He would heal me and He would restore all that I had lost. Once I received this message, it was up to me to activate my faith even when it did not really make sense to do so.
How? I wrote down a series of responses that I would recite whenever a doubt invaded my consciousness.
If I began to think: “you will never be able to wear your Barbie pink satin Oscar platforms” I would respond with, THAT IS NOT TRUE, God said
“Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
If I began to think: your disability insurance provider will never approve your request for an insurance payout and you will have no income - where will you live, what will you wear?, I would retort, God said,
25Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air: They do not sow or reap or gather into barns— and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26
This act of reliance on God Power is TRUST. And you can only rely on God Power if you have faith.
We are told to ask God for whatever we want. Then wait on Him for the victory.
You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:14
It is a promise, darling.
If you can read the thoughts of the FATHER, then you know HIM.
My God is complex, magnificent, demanding, loving, kind, powerful and baffling.
What baffles me the most is His timing.
In my heart and in my mind, I know that God can work miracles and that He will answer prayer. But oh, the wait can be excruciating. Bear in mind that I am impatience personified. I am the one who would rather walk 30 minutes than wait for a bus that comes every 15 minutes. The wait makes me want to run in every direction without shoes.
Yet, God constantly asks that when we ask Him to engage, we wait for the answer. It is only when we are given our marching orders that we are commanded to GO!
How can we blame God for our fatigue level when we RUN ahead of him without waiting for his aids?
"13 Still I am certain to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. 14Wait patiently for the LORD; be strong and courageous. Wait patiently for the LORD."
Wait on the Lord, darling. He will give you the plan and the strength to see it through. It is a promise.
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When I am feeling OVERWHELMED with all that I am unable to do, I start to panic. And when I start to panic, I cannot think clearly. And when I cannot think, I cannot pray. And when I cannot pray, I lack restraint and I begin to make mistakes. I begin to act irrationally. I cry when my steak is overcooked. I yell at the Suburban that has been steadily creeping into my lane. I take 2 hours to complete a 30 minute task. I use “all caps” in my emails. Goodbye Butterfly. Hello Bully.
This transformation from a butterfly into a bully can happen in an unguarded instant. If I do nothing to stop the chain of negative events, I may do serious harm to a wonderful relationship, job opportunity, or newly perfected routine.
God has set very high standards for His people. But He has also set up a very unique judicial system. If you commit to doing things His way, God will always provide a ram in the bush to help you reach your goal. When confronted with a problem, ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS ASK FOR HELP IN REAL TIME. God wants us to rely solely on Him for the answers to our problems. And once we engage Him to intervene, we have done our part and we can RELAX AND BE HAPPY in the face of all.
Life is fraught with so many obstacles. There are days, weeks, months when it appears like the hits just won’t stop. Yet, we are admonished to do everything in our power to avoid a contentious spirit. Every ruffling of the Holy Spirit within opens the door to dark spiritual energy that if unchecked can render a bad situation much worse. When I reflect on the many missed opportunities of my life, I note that bad decisions were exacerbated when I opted to take matters into my own hands instead of relying on God to sort it out.
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phiippians 4:4-7
We must be vigilant and unruffled in the face of the vicissitudes of life. When they start their wind up, we must acknowledge them for what they are…distractions. We must then PAUSE, WITHDRAW and pray until our calm returns. Then, we must leave our prayer corner armed with the knowledge that we are servants of the most High. Our God is AWESOME and can slay any dragon that is thwarting our progress. PAUSE. PRAY. RESET. & RE-ENGAGE WITH JOY.
God is here. It is a promise, darling.