Faith can seem like a strange thing. One day you can feel on top of the world. You are facing huge obstacles, yet you are trusting God and you know way down deep in that place that’s hard to describe, that you are going to come through this OK. In fact, you are quite sure that the obstacles are crumbling before you.
Then there are other days. (You know, one of “those” days). Just getting out of bed in the morning seems like a huge feat – and one that you might not be able to pull off!
So what happened? How can that be? One day you’re up; one day your’re down. One day you see yourself right up there with David …and Paul! The next day, you’re more like Demas, the loser.
Will you ever be consistent and not wavering? You begin to doubt your ability to walk with God in a reputable way. Can you truly be His person?
Yes, you can … and if you are asking the question, you are! You just have to understand the nature of faith and why it may seem elusive.
One way to grasp the right perspective would be to compare your spiritual strength to your natural strength. Life is fluid. Health is fluid. Strength is fluid. Strength of any kind is not like an object which you acquire and proudly display. It is part of your living being, and as in any part of life, there are efforts which are essential for success.
Consider an athlete – such as an NFL player. Can you imagine what would happen if he took his strength for granted? He wouldn’t be around very long. Even when he looks and acts like he has arrived at the zenith of physical perfection, he continues to work out and to practice. And, if he suffers an injury and has to sit out for awhile, his training increases to a new level upon his return. The athlete knows that his strength, endurance, and physical expertise are totally dependent on practice and training. He would never expect to maintain his desired level of achievement while in a total rest mode.
We need to take a lesson from the athletes. We need to honor the precious thing we call faith – our belief in God – our trust in His Word – and our zealous appropriation of all that He has for us. We must realize that it is a living thing. It grows or it diminishes. And a lot of the current status of this precious faith is dependent upon our current mindset.
The Bible says that “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” (Romans 10:9) The nutrition which feeds our faith is God’s Word, and if we aren’t nourishing our spirits with his rich food, our faith will be diminishing. Even if yesterday we considered ourselves spiritual giants, yesterday’s food will not keep us full of faith. It’s like the manna in the wilderness which became rancid on the next day. We need fresh food everyday.
Then in Jude 20, we see that faith is built up by praying in the spirit. So how is your daily prayer life? Do you check in with your spiritual headquarters every day, listening for direction, heeding His nudge, and listening for His voice of encouragement and affirmation? Do you speak His Word into the atmosphere around you, changing the fog of delusion into the clarity of His vision?
Remember, yesterday’s manna is rancid. Every day we start with a new need for our Father and His Word. Every day we have an opportunity to build on our strength of the past, or to allow that strength to recede. Staying the same is never an option.
My husband has led those in our church to say often, “I believe God.” You might think, well of course we do. But as you say those simple words, you will find your spirit leaping within you. A resounding, “yes!”
All of society around us needs us to truly be believers, strong in our understanding and faith. So let me encourage you. Believe God. Read His Word. Pray. Do those things which build up your faith, and those things which cause it to continue.
In other words, keep the faith!