Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Thoughts on Faith

I have a plaque in my office that reads “Faith is not believing God can, it is knowing that God will.” It has got me thinking a little bit. What do we KNOW God WILL do? Is that not presumptuous? I think it’s fine if the statement is portraying truths that we know about God from the scripture….He will deliver us, protect us, see us through & have what is best for us, etc. But I’m afraid it can be read in a way that promotes false and romanticized ideas about who God is. Not that I understand Him myself, but I don’t believe we can ask for anything we want or even things we feel we need, pray about it, believe enough that God will do it and have it automatically accomplished for us. This idea puts too much power in our hands and completely takes away the sovereignty of God. 

Even Jesus asked for the cup to be removed from him when faced with the cross. Unjustly sentenced to one of the most excruciating and humiliating forms of death, if there was a way out of it in God’s will he wanted to take it and he of all people deserved God's taking it away, but Jesus did not expect that God would certainly take it away. He knew if God's will was different than his own he would follow it, even to the cross. I think the plaque would be better worded “Faith is knowing that God can, but trusting Him when He doesn’t.” 

There are too many tragedies that God could fix that He chooses not to and too many paths that seem good that He says no to. I would hate to cause a weakening of faith in someone who reads it and portrays it in the wrong light. So, even though it’s cute and matches the color theme of my office and can be read the right way, I think I will take it down. Praise be to God Almighty, the author and perfector of our faith!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Proverbs for Life

I have realized there are things I have been praying for that I may not see changed the way I have been praying for them to. I have really sought God on this and have found that my heart can be at peace even so. He has lead me to Proverbs and allowed so many of those verses to penetrate my soul I wanted to share some of what I have embraced in His Word. I have to trust in God's sovereignty, I have to know He sees and knows and I have to trust Him with my heart and not harden it. I must not lean on my own understanding but acknowledge Him in everything. I won't give up or loose hope, but I will not continue to stay in the same spot and not grow because circumstances have not changed the way I expected. I'm submitting to God, in Him I will be strong, and I will stay faithful to Him even if He doesn't answer my prayers the way I think He should, the way I thought was best.

I have realized a Christian's need to sometimes pray for ourself to change doesn't always mean we are having to change because we are in the wrong. Sometimes we have to change in order to move forward.

The Lord watches our ways. He is our protector, not just over our physical bodies, but over our hearts and emotions and our whole lives. He will be our shield and He will watch over every aspect of our life.

Pray for wisdom and discernment, it is a healing balm to a hurting soul. It provides direction, encouragement, grace and purpose.

prov 2:7 He holds success in store for the upright,
   he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless,
8 for he guards the course of the just
   and protects the way of his faithful ones.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

I'm doing Beth Moore's Believing God study right now and todays scripture was Psalm 139:1-5, 13-18. It discusses how God knows us intimately, He examines our thoughts and motives, and He knows our hearts. He made us in the womb and has all our days planned ahead of time. He knows everything about us. We are fearfully and wonderfully made!

As I read this I thought about the difference it would make if we would view people as God's wonderful creation and always be aware that He has a plan for them too. Initially thinking of my kids and husband, how I want my kids to see and realize how precious they are to God and how He has a wonderful plan and purpose for their life. How I want my husband to realize that too and lead our family down the path God has for us. I truly want to encourage them in that way.

Think of all the people in our life who would be affected if we viewed them and treated them with respect, regardless of the circumstance, due to the significance they really have in Christ. I'm not exactly sure how to do that, but I think a start would be to take seriously the plans and thoughts of our Christian friends when they feel God is leading them a certain way, to lift up and encourage those who may feel a lack of purpose or direction, and have a little patience with others because we know they are so special to God, even the lady who has 40 items in the 10 item checkout line!

Also, be sure of your own significance. God loves you, He has plans for you. He knows where you go and what you do. He knows your thoughts and what's in your heart and He cares about you! Everything about you! Sometimes I need to remember that too. When we are sure of our own significance, we will be happy to help others realize theirs!