My friend Brian Peart wrote a great devotional last month that he sends to people in his business community that speaks VOLUMES to the current circumstances many people face in these uncertain times. Read it, enjoy it, APPLY it! God is trustworthy. You can reach Brian at nexusfinance @ mindspring.com
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1
I looked up the word “evidence” in my concordance and it only appears one time in the New Testament-right here in this verse. The word ‘faith’ however, appears hundreds of times. Seems to me, God is more concerned with our faith than in proving himself with petty evidences. Sure, we asked Jesus into our hearts and we TRULY believe in Him for salvation-but do we have faith enough to trust God with our every day walk? Over the last few months it has become clear to me that very few people actually live out their faith when faced with bad circumstances. We are a culture obsessed with immediate gratification and when we don’t get it, we immediately assume something is wrong.
When faced with tough financial times, for example, the first thing many Christians do is assume something is wrong. Either they think that God is trying to tell them to do something else, or worse, they start judging God’s character based on their circumstances. Something like this, “I tithe, I am good guy, why are you doing this to me God?” I know I felt that after the hurricane destroyed my West Palm office. As if God is in Heaven with some voodoo doll of us sticking pins in us just to spite us. Ridiculous. Listen, we are human. When things don’t go our way it is easy in the moment to think these thoughts. But what matters is the next moment. Do you dwell on the woe is me thought or do you go back to the Word and cling to Romans 8:28 knowing deep down that He will work good from it. Faith is clinging to the truth of God’s Word DESPITE the circumstances. When Paul got thrown in prison for preaching the word-did he sulk and start questioning God’s Will for his life? Did he decide to change his career? No, he rejoiced that God allowed him to suffer for Jesus. Wow.
God says in Romans 8:37 that we are “more than conquerors through Christ Jesus”-but maybe you don’t feel like a conqueror today. What do you do in that situation? Do you sulk, question and doubt or do you put your faith in the Word and move boldly forward as a conqueror trusting in Jesus to be true. Faith is trusting in the Word DESPITE the circumstances. So often we make rash decisions, change our careers, spouse, where we live, based solely on the fact that things are not going the way we think they should and so we assume something must be wrong. We did not get immediate gratification, the circumstances do not mesh with the Word, so something is wrong. NO! The Word will ALWAYS come true-but God is not in a hurry. It does sometimes take time. I am accused of being an eternal optimist. I have had visions of a life that I believe God is moving me towards and through all the highs and all the lows of my life, I never wavered in my trust that “God was going to work all things for good” for me as He said in His Scripture. It rarely works out like I think it will and people closest to me take many things I say with a grain of salt because for so many years, things did not work out as good as I expected. Only in hindsight can I see that God was working the whole time molding and making me ready for those big visions to play out. He was there the whole time even in the darkest hour.
Despite your circumstances, God is faithful. He can be trusted. Faith is believing the high call of Christ despite circumstances, not waffling, not hedging, fully engaged and if things are not going your way-you don’t doubt, you hold fast to the Word and eventually, when you do, God does work it out. He IS faithful. You CAN trust His Word and just because things are not going your way and you don’t understand things does not mean anything is wrong. You just aren’t ready yet for the vision to become reality. Oh, what if we could rise up and cling to the powerful words of Christ and truly live out our faith in the face of a world full of doubt. That is my hope for you and for me… that is what the world needs now, warriors for Christ boldly professing Scripture in the face of an uncertain world!