Have you ever wondered what the future looks like, where you will be in five, ten, or twenty years? If only we had a sneak peek of the motion picture of our lives. How much better we would be at making decisions if we knew where they all led?
Unfortunately, there are no such films, no “Back to the Future” episodes, and no crystal balls. What we do have access to, however, is a God who is the director of our futures. If we place an unabashed faith in Him, we will find He always does as He promises, and in Ephesians 3:20, He promises to do exceedingly and abundantly more than we could ever ask or think.
God wants to push us past the boundaries of ordinary into the realm of extraordinary living. Extraordinary as defined by Webster is “going beyond what is usual, regular, or customary.” I believe it is living beyond the mundane, above mediocrity, and in the center of all that God has called us to to. This can only be accomplished in a life that is built on a foundation of faith.
So what is faith? Simply, faith is complete dependence on God. People with faith have a different outlook on life. They see more than just the circumstances they are facing; they see God working through them. Oswald Chambers defines faith as “the inborn capacity to see God behind everything.” Imagine if we saw God behind everything. Suddenly mountains could be reduced to foothills, storms could be calmed, peace could drown chaos, and hope could restore desperation.
I remember learning an acronym for faith when I was a child in Sunday school— Full Assurance in the Heart. While it was a great way to describe faith, it falls just a little short in defining it. Full Assurance in the Heart about what? I believe it is Full Assurance in the Heart that God is sovereign and in control of our lives and truly has our best interests at the center of His plan for us. Does that mean we will never face a problem and everything will always be rosy? Hardly so! What it does mean is that we will never face our struggles alone and that God is our source for everything and will help us navigate the stormy seas.
It’s important to note that faith does not begin with us; it begins with God. Mark 9:17-24 tells a story of a desperate father who brought his son to Jesus. This son had been possessed by a spirit since childhood that made him unable to speak and caused him to convulse and foam at the mouth. Many times he was cast by the spirit into fire and water as it tried to destroy him. The father had tried everything to no avail. His last hope was Jesus.
As the father begged Jesus to have compassion on them and to help his son, Jesus responded by saying, “Everything is possible to the one who believes.” Immediately, the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe! Help my unbelief.” In that instant, Jesus heard the desperate father’s cry and rebuked the spirit. The spirit came out of the boy shrieking. It made him convulse violently and then dropped him like a rag doll. Many thought the boy was dead, but Jesus took him by the hand and raised him up.
This story holds the following encouraging messages for us:
- God cares for every detail of our lives.
- God will intervene when there is no other way.
- Nothing is impossible to those who believe.
- But perhaps the greatest salve for my weary soul is found in “I believe. Help my unbelief.” When we don’t have the faith we need, God will provide!
There are times in all of our lives when our faith wavers, when the waves crash over us and we can barely stay afloat, let alone courageously live out our dreams. I’ve had a few of these fragile moments lately in my own life— that is why I love this passage. I think God knew we would need to know that we can ask Him for the faith to believe when we don’t have it within ourselves. Perhaps that is why He even included this story in the Bible to let us know that when we can’t even muster the strength to find the faith that we need, God will come through and give us the faith to believe. So rather than beating ourselves up when our faith is on shaky ground, we simply need to say, “I believe. Help my unbelief.”
Lord Jesus, I’m so thankful that You are not insulted when I come needing my faith strengthened and renewed. Life is hard sometimes, Lord, and it can take a toll on my heart. Thank You for loving me anyway and giving me the faith that I need to believe. Help me to grab on to that faith and never let go, for through it You can MOVE MOUNTAINS and do the MIRACULOUS in my life!
*Most of Today’s Blog is taken from Dare to Soar, 109-112. Dare to Soar is available at Pauladunnministries.com.