Peace in the Christian Life Hinges on One Thing...
Welcome back to the last installment of a two-part series on Faith. Last week we talked about overcoming doubting faith. If you missed it, you can read about it here.
This week we will discover all that God has already provided to bolster a strong faith.
And Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, O Lord who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your kindred, that I may do you good,’ I am not worthy of the least of all the deeds of steadfast love and all the faithfulness that you have shown to your servant, for with only my staff I crossed this Jordan, and now I have become two camps. Please deliver me from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau, for I fear him, that he may come and attack me, the mothers with the children. But you said, ‘I will surely do you good, and make your offspring as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.’”
"But you said..."
As parents of small children, we all know how careful we must be in making promises to our kids. This special care is needed when we are in a situation where the children are becoming impatient, on the verge of a meltdown, and we are trying to think of something, anything that will neutralize the situation. That's when the condition with a promise spills forth.
"Well Sally, if you sit here like a quiet little angel for Mommy while we wait on this long line, I promise we will go get some ice cream."
It's not that we didn't have intentions to fulfill our promise, but circumstances may arise, like the line took way longer than we thought and we have other activities scheduled, that there won't be time to get ice cream.
And then our sweet little angel says, "But you said we could..." This statement may be accompanied by a tantrum or sad tears. Either way, we've created a situation by not fulfilling our promise, a promise made to placate the child rather than to speak to their heart.
Thanks be to God, we have a Heavenly Father whose promises are sure. They were not made to placate us, but to speak to our hearts and encourage our faith in a promise-keeping God.
According to BibleInfo.com, one person counted 3573 promises in the Bible! Let that sink in!
THREE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED SEVENTY THREE PROMISES
We have a Heavenly Father who not only wrote His children a love-letter, the Bible, so that we could get to know Him and have a relationship with Him, but He made 3573 specific and loving promises to us throughout!
There it is! God has provided all that we need to have great faith! All WE have to do is BELIEVE that what God says, He will do!!
In order to believe that God will do what He says He will, we must KNOW His promises. Reading God's Word is the best way to memorize and understand His promises in the full context of the Bible.
As a new believer and still today, I've also found helpful a handy pocket-sized book called God's Promises for Every Day, written by Jack Countryman, which you can purchase here at Amazon. In it you will find most every circumstance you will face in this life and God's coinciding encouraging promise to strengthen your faith.
Once we begin to hide God's promises in our hearts, like Jacob in the Scripture verses above, we will be ready to pray back God's promises to Him, for every circumstance, believing that all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. 2 Corinthians 1:20
How many of us say "In Jesus Name, Amen" at the end of a prayer, but are truly believing what amen means?! I confess, that while I was writing this post, I realized that I rarely, if ever, think of the true meaning of the word amen, "SO BE IT", after saying a prayer.
When we pray God's promises back to Him, we can say with confidence, "Amen - SO BE IT!". And not only His promises, but every Word that comes from the mouth of God can be prayed back to Him with a resounding "SO BE IT".
Let us remember that no earthly circumstances can hinder the fulfillment of His Word
if we look steadfastly at the immutability of that Word and not at the uncertainty of this
ever-changing world. God would have us believe His Word without other confirmation,
and then He is ready to give us "according to our faith."
When once His Word is past,
When He hath said , 'I will,' (Heb. 13:5)
The thing shall come at last;
God keeps His promise still. (2 Cor. 1:20)
The prayer of the Pentecostal age was like a cheque to be paid in coin over the counter.
--Sir R. Anderson
"And God said… and it was so." (Gen. 1:9.)
Streams in the Desert, March 21st
Miss Havergal has said: "Every year, I might almost say every day, that I live,
I seem to see more clearly how all the rest and gladness and power of our Christian life hinges
on one thing; and that is, taking God at His word, believing that He really means exactly what
He says, and accepting the very words in which He reveals His goodness and grace, without substituting others or altering the precise modes and tenses which He has seen fit to use."
Bring Christ's Word--Christ's promise, and Christ's sacrifice--His blood, with thee,
and not one of Heaven's blessings can be denied thee.
Streams in the Desert, March 24
It would seem that everything that vexes us in life, and most especially major trials, ultimately fall into the category of worry and anxiety.
I don't know about you, but I am tired of worrying and being anxious. I want the peace of Christ to rule in my heart. I want to take God at His word, in the seen and especially in the unseen. And most of all, I want to fully love, honor and respect my Lord and Savior, never doubting Him, ALWAYS believing Him, and ever expecting good from Him.
May we all hear Jesus say, "Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone..."
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