Monday, April 14, 2014

An Attitude of Faith

     According to James MacDonald, "Faith is believing the Word of God and acting upon it, no matter how I feel, because God promises a good result." (pp. 147) The no matter how I feel part of this definition is huge for me. I live in a state were my emotions can't be trusted. My feelings are very unpredictable. A perfect example of this happened last night. Joshua took us to Roadhouse for dinner. I was fine and happy one minute. Then for whatever reason, I realized it had been three months since we lost the baby, and I was holding back tears. There are a lot of days that I don't feel like getting out of bed let alone feel like putting forth the effort it takes to trust God. But I do make that choice because I know it is what's best. I know He has, He is, and He will bring about good from this pain.

     The Bible is full of examples of people who have trusted God. These great heroes of the faith were ordinary people. It was their faith in the one true, living God that set them apart. Doubting is easy. It takes no effort to doubt. Faith requires deliberate and persistent choices over time. We are fortunate that we have these examples of faith to lean on when doubting seems so much easier. We can open up our Bibles and read about God's faithfulness in the past. And because He is the same yesterday, today, and forever, we can trust Him with our present and future. We can trust that He will do what He says He will do. God's faithfulness in the past serves as a reminder that He can be trusted to be faithful today and tomorrow as well. The more time we spend in God's Word; the more our faith grows. When I'm really struggling with doubting God in some area of my life, I pull out Scripture verses that have spoken to me and read them and meditate on them. My faith grows as I focus on the truth of His Word.

     James MacDonald points out that often times difficult circumstances are God's way of drawing you to Himself and growing your faith. I definitely see that through our miscarriage. Losing this baby has been one of the biggest tests of my faith. I decided the moment it was confirmed our baby no longer had a heart beat that I was going to trust God and rely on Him. It hasn't been easy. It has been the hardest thing I have walked through in my life thus far, but I'm thankful that by the grace of God I have realized I can't do this without Him. I can't do this in my own strength. As hard as it is sometimes to walk by faith; I know it's harder still to try to do this on my own. The loss of my baby has a purpose, and I want to walk in faith so that I can honor the purpose God has in all of this. I know that God will complete His good work in me. This pain is part of the process. I know He is working to bring good out of this and to make me more like Jesus.

     Power is not found in having faith. Power is found in God and His Word. It's not the faith itself, but the Person the faith is in. Faith grows stronger by spending time in God's Word and applying it to our lives. Confessing our faith also strengthens it. I love the Newsboys song We Believe. Every time I hear that song it brings me to tears. There is so much power in speaking out loud what we believe. Every time I sing that chorus I'm overwhelmed by the greatness of God, the immensity of His sacrifice for us, and the blessings beyond compare that He gives us when we put our faith in Him. Praying builds our faith as well. Every time I have prayed for the faith to trust God and His promises, He answers that prayer. Every time. He wants to grow our faith; we just have to ask.

"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for,
the convictions of things not seen."
Hebrews 11:1 (ESV)

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