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Monday, May 25, 2015

Inspired by . . . thoughts on faith Vol. IV
God knows I’m a slow learner. I’m so very thankful for His patience. His mercy. His grace.
Ever since my dad passed away, I’ve been having a crisis of faith. Not a crisis of belief, mind you, but a crisis of faith. My faith.
As I shared in a previous post, my dad’s passing has caused me to question how strong my faith in God truly is.  Part of the questioning has been why. Why am I even questioning my faith to begin with? I’ve been through tough, life-changing circumstances before. They never made me question my faith. Why now?


As I’ve wrestled with this, I’ve realized some things. Grief is a complex emotion. It’s a journey, as I’ve shared before, and it has layers . . . it, we change, as we move through the layers. And grief often has a target. Something {or someone} to blame. To release it’s emotions upon. For me, that target has been my faith.
I don’t know if any of this is making sense to anyone, but if it’s making sense to you, even a little bit, then maybe what God is teaching me will help you, too.
Since my crisis began I’ve been reading everything I can find about faith. Starting with the scriptures. {You must always start with the scriptures so that you have a solid basis for hearing Truth from other sources, should God choose to use them to speak to you.} As you might imagine, the bible has a lot to say about faith. Over 229 verses in the New Testament alone speak about faith. About how Jesus saw the faith in people and healed them. About how Jesus rebuked His disciples for their lack of faith. About how, without faith, it is impossible to please God. About the great faith of Abraham.
The more I read, the more I despaired. Because, right now, my faith is not great. It is weak, broken and hurting.
And then I read this:
“Some people think that I have a great faith, but that is not true. I do not have a great faith - I have faith in a great God! Jesus said that if we have faith no bigger than a mustard seed, it is sufficient to remove mountains. We understand that to mean that not quantity, but quality is important. The joy is that the Holy Spirit is willing to bring faith into our hearts. His faith in us has power, just as a mustard seed is small but has power to bring forth fruit.” ~Corrie ten Boom, Each New Day

Having read The Hiding Place last year, I had great context for this statement. I remembered that Miss Corrie wrote honestly about her lack of faith, especially in contrast to her sister’s seemingly giant, and unwavering faith. I suddenly realized that I had been reading the scriptures on faith from the wrong perspective. I had been focused on the greatness, the quantity of faith, and I was entirely missing the point. Jesus didn’t say we need a mountain of faith for Him to answer prayer. As shown in the gospels, Jesus always came through for those who gave what faith they had to Him.1
It’s okay that my faith is weak, broken and hurting right now. It’s what I do with my faith that matters, not how much of it I possess.

I see now that what I must do is offer my faith, such as it is, to Him. It’s a sacrifice really, because I’ve always used my faith as a shield of sorts. It’s time to peel the rest of it away and offer it up.
And like everything we give to God, He will return it back to us . . .
Greater than it was before.

Going deeper,

1While I’m Waiting, Laura Hodges Poole
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Holly Barrett

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If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June