Thursday, October 20, 2016

Faith: Believing God

Chuckle: A preacher asked for a discount at a store saying, "You know I'm a poor preacher." "I know," said the storekeeper. "I heard you last night!"
Good Quote: "The thing you really believe in always happens ... and the belief in a thing makes it happen." --Frank Lloyd Wright
"When you ask, you must believe (have faith) and not doubt" (James 1:6 NIV). Jesus said, ". . . whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (have faith) that you have received it and it will be yours" (Mark 11:24 NIV).
Think with me back to yesterday. From the time you awoke until you went to bed last night, how many times did you face issues in your life, when you felt totally inadequate and lacking in wisdom sufficient to deal with a situation you were facing? If, after reflecting on this question, you answer, none, then you probably went through the day depending entirely upon your own strength and wisdom. You see, even if we think we know the best answer to a problem, or the best way to handle a situation, we may be settling for second best wisdom -- our own.
From our passages above, we see that believing (having faith) is essential for God to answer our prayers and grant our requests. Faith is believing God and acting on that belief. "If God says it, I believe it, and I will ask him about it!" When you pray, do you do so with expectation and confidence that God will answer, or is prayer just one more possibility among other things you depend upon for wisdom and strength in your daily life? Maybe you pray something like this: "OK, Lord, I'm asking, but deep down I don't really believe you will answer my prayer." What kind of faith is that??
A doubting Christian is one who says, he trusts God, but really doesn't. He says he has faith but he really doesn't. He is divided inside. God's Word says he or she is "double-minded." "That person (without faith) should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded person, unstable in all he does" (James 1:7-8 NIV).
A double-minded Christian is one who knows Christ as Savior and is going to heaven, but on a daily basis does not have the faith to trust God to grant his or her request for wisdom to guide his or her life. We can pray all night to no avail unless we believe and have faith. As we mature in our Christian life, our faith should grow as well. What is it in your life that holds you back from believing God and exercising your faith in Him?
"At a circus a huge elephant was tied to an eighteen-inch stake. Could he not easily have pulled it out of the ground and been free? Sure! But he had tried it when he was a baby and was unsuccessful. The elephant had concluded that he could never pull it out of the ground. So there he stood, a massive creature capable of lifting whole trees, yet held captive by a puny stake. What small stake could faith release you from?"
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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