July 10, 2008

"I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief."

Thanks for all the comments on "Do you believe God is always good?" I talked about my season of darkness last summer, where my faith and belief had grown weak. One scripture the Lord gave me in my reading, you know when you are reading the bible and a scripture almost jumps off the page, you continue reading, but it is like a blue light special is happening all around that scripture, the words are pulsating, saying "come back and read me again, grab your highlighter." That is when I know the Lord is calling me to park there a while. I mediate on those words. I will say, "What do you want me to learn from this God, open my eyes, open my heart, let me be in the center of your will." The scripture that God had me park on last summer was:

From the book of Mark 9:23,24
'If you can'?" said Jesus. "Everything is possible for him who believes."

Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!"

I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief. Those words hit me right where I was, I did believe "in" God, but did I believe God?
Did I believe that He would work EVERYTHING out for good?
Did I believe His words that I shouldn't worry?
Did I believe His words that he was LOVE?

When things were dark and gloomy for me when Jack's face became paralyzed last summer, did I really believe these things, or did I just believe that there was a God in heaven?

I did a bible study the year before Jack's initial diagnosis. I know God was using this study to bring me to a new place with Him to walk the journey with Jack. It was called "Believing God." The study was written by Beth Moore. Of all the studies I have ever done by Beth Moore, none challeneged me like this. I didn't even want to finish it, because I felt so overwhelmed to actually believe the words in scripture as they applied to me personally. The rules were easy for me to apply, it was the promises and faithfulness that I had trouble with. As I was leading the bible study I couldn't quit, I finished it and felt like I didn't really get it. But over the next year I continued to question if I was just reading the bible like it was a story book of good ideas, a guidebook to life, or if I would allow it to challenge some of the soft places I had chosen to sit, places that were easy to be.

Take worrying for instance. Matthew 6:34
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

I had read that verse in the past and thought to myself, to not worry, was a good idea and all, but not really possible, I really hadn't thought that out loud, more like I just disregarded the scripture as more as an old wives tale.
Last summer this scripture became one of those blue light special lights, shining out at me whenever I saw it. So I sat there and thought, "God is this really possible?" and then the scripture, "I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief." would come to my mind. O.k. God I am praying for you to overcome my unbelief. And in His most awesome Glory He did.

I had prayed through the scripture on worry over and over for 3 years previous to this last summer, but I never prayed for God to increase my belief (which also means faith) in Him. I was asking Him to fight the fires rather than to just fix my heart, and grow it for Him. The difference between my prayers were huge, and the response from God was amazing.

Beware, if you pray this prayer, and God starts increasing your belief, if you don't have Christian friends that are comfortable with their Christianity and their place with God (which I am blessed that for the most part I do), your Christian friends might think you have gone a bit too far out for Jesus. Many Christians like it in their safe and soft places, I know, I still do, but I want what God wants for me more. The scripture below convicts me of how important it is for me to be in God's will and not where I think I should be.

Matthew 7.
21"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' 23Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'

If you are bored with your Christianity.
If you are afraid.
If you are angry.
If you are desperate.
If you are overwhelmed.

Pray for God to increase your belief, anticipate it, be in His word, pray again, wait on God. This is one of those things that we can confidently ask for, it is in God's will, He wants us to love and trust Him more, He will answer this prayer if you seek Him with all of your heart. Which brings to mind another favorite scripture of mine.
"Consecrate yourself, for tomorrow God will do amazing things through you."


Anna said...

Another great post. Thank you for taking the time to write...it always hits home for me!

Joanne Kennedy said...

What a wonderful post. God is good! There is no doubt about that. I know what you mean by some Christians not being comfortable when your faith becomes stronger. I think it often reminds them that their faith is lacking.

There is no such thing as going to far out for God. At least not in my eyes.

Sometimes when we have bad times in our life it is hard to believe that God is using that for something good but it's always true in the long run.

Pain in our life often brings us closer to our friends and family. That alone is a blessing. God knows what He is doing. Even at the times we think He may be wrong.

My faith is what gets me through the hard times. Without God, I don't see the point in living.


Anonymous said...

My wife was diagnosed almost 5 yrs ago w/ breast cancer. Thank God we have come through it. Yet, for the past 5 years our entire life has been pure hell. I have lost 3 jobs, (not thru my fault), made a stupid investment that is sucking money away and our faith. I have for about 1.5 weeks now been praying Mark 9. What a powerful thing to pray, yet my faith has been crushed. I somehow have become so beaten that I do not really believe that God cares any more. I have even told God that I am sorry for my disbelief. Please pray for what God has placed in my heart about my job, family, etc.... I know that it is HIS will and desires for me and my family. I am just so spiritually, emotionally, and, physically drained. I want to see my good Father again.

socalsrfr26@verizon.net said...

Thanky you very much for your post. I have always struggled with truly trusting God to work in my life and for the good of it. Your insight is spot on and recently God has chalenged me to trust in him with everything. May God bless you and continue growing your spiritual wisdom.