Aug 30, 2008
Believing God -- Weeks 4 & 5
I was going to go ahead and skip week 4 since I didn't post it during the proper week, but I just can't seem to get over the fact that my post list would have weeks 1, 2, 3, and 5. I just can't do it.
So I have just a few thoughts from weeks 4 and 5 that I'll share, and then next week (I believe, and Lord willin') we'll be on week 6. All of us. Will be on the same week. Won't that be nice? :-)
For those who haven't been here before or didn't know about the "Believing God" study we're doing: we take turns posting our comments on either 2nd cup of coffee or on Meyers on the Hood. Many of us also post on our own blog, too, just to keep our weeks straight. eh hem.
Week 4 took us through the Hall of Faith found in Hebrews 11. We read the faith-filled stories of Enoch, who walked with and pleased God; Noah, who feared and obeyed God; Abraham, who trusted and followed God; and Isaac, who blessed and believed God.
It was a remarkable journey, to say the least. Probably the most profound thing I was reminded of from this week was found in the story of Abraham. Beth said, "One of Abraham's monumental tests painstakingly challenges us: time. Between 'go' and 'receive' is more often than not the faith test of time." She affectionately renames this condition the "Later Syndrome." *grin*
I have seen, over and over again, situations where God gives a Word, a promise, or a calling, and then says no more for a time. Sometimes a loooooong time. During that time is when we have the opportunity to trust Him and obey. We must depend on His promise and Word and literally live by that trust until we see it come to fruition.
I have been there, done that, and I've watched many people struggle during this time. During most of these circumstances, things appear to get worse before they get better! Beth poignantly points out that sometimes that's just part of the test. It's not until later that things start to come together and make sense.
Well, Amen to that. And again, I say Amen!
I've seen one who was promised that a loved one would be saved. It finally came some years later. How much prayer was spent on that person's salvation? One could never measure it, but you can believe that God was glorified when that person was justified!
I've seen marriages suffer immense pain and heartache. One marriage partner was promised healing if they stuck it out. Over a decade and a half later, the healing process finally begins.
I've seen job circumstances waver, hang in the balance, only to come crashing down. And then more waiting. How long can a family wait to receive an income? In this day and time, not long before panic can set in.
I've seen a calling given on the heart of a believer, and it not come to fulfillment for years.
Why? Why must we go through this period of waiting, wanting, and wondering? What good can come from it?
Change within the heart of the believer. God is preparing us for something that we cannot understand fully in this lifetime, but one Day we will smile in the realization that He really does know what He's doing. And He knows the time frames we're in...and can bust them wide open if He chooses to.
Week 5 continued on the same journey through the Hall of Fame. Beth used the stories of Jacob, Joseph, Moses, the falling walls of Jericho, and the Prostitute Rahab to share with us that we can do all things through Christ.
It's an incredible week of study, but I'd like to close with just this one quote from week 5:
"Our tendency is to think that if He loves us all the same and has a corporate plan as important as the individual, He must be spread pretty thin. God's love is measureless. His plans are infinite. He loves each of us and plans for us with limitless extravagance."
I think that statement sums up the two weeks for me. Everything we wait for, and everything we long to do or be for Him, has been thoughtfully planned out and provided for in His infinite wisdom. So that even if we don't get the exact answer we thought we wanted, we will be astonished at how He works everything for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)