Monday, March 3, 2008

Looking Beyond the Wave

• How is it that Christian people have continued to believe and obey the words of Scripture written so long ago?

• Why is it that Christian people don't simply fall apart when circumstances in their lives are so painful they feel like they're being suffocated under the weight of them?

• How is it possible to be homesick for Heaven, when we have never even been there?
Those were just a few of the things I've had on my mind over the last few days. It occured to me that the more I thought about them, the more obvious it became that the answer to all three is one simple word...

FAITH

Not a mythlogical faith that we somehow muster up from within a spiritually dead heart, but a genuine faith that is given to us to so that we can live with hope when everything seems so hopeless, optimism when circumstances are so bleak that it doesn't appear there is anything to be optimistic about, encouragement when all we really want to do is fall apart and perseverance to keep pushing through it all because there's something better waiting for us.

Over the last week I've had the opportunity to pray for several people who are dealing with some seriously heavy things. Three different parents with teenager daughters in spiritual confusion and/or with serious medical problems. A single lady who's fighting off utter despondency about her life, a young woman who's mother was recently diagnosed with cancer, a man who's under attack for standing up for his faith, a young woman who is the victim of malicious gossip and slander, and several other very serious spiritual circumstances in the lives of believers.

I could be mistaken, but it seems like these things tend to come in waves. Sometimes, it seems like the assault from the enemy is coming from every direction and affecting the lives in huge ways, of just about everyone I know. Those are the tsunami attacks. Then at other times it seems like all is quiet and friends and aquaintances are being left alone for a time, to refocus and have a bit of a breather before the next wave.

As I thought about all of this, the reality of faith came back to mind. The gift of faith is what brings us to our knees and at the same time it's why we keep going. It truly is incredible when you think about what God has given us, to get through this life, and deal with the things that affect us and our families in this world. Without it, we'd be completely defenseless and would do the very same thing the unsaved do, to try and comfort and soothe ourselves during the difficult times. We'd turn to the world's "medications" and the world's philosophies and the world's "wise" men for our answers, and our numbing solutions.

Christians don't have to do any of that. All we have to do is be still, and know He is God.