by Brandy Webb
Believing in God the Father and Jesus is easy for me to do. I grew up believing in their existence, but having complete faith and not worrying about things is not as easy, especially when my children are the ones suffering. I can’t stand it when my children suffer, and I’m sure I’m not the only parent that feels that way. In fact, it makes me feel so helpless. It also isn’t easy when prayers don’t get the response that I had hoped for. These situations are what really try my faith. I can empathize with the father in Mark 9:24 that proclaims to Jesus “‘I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”’
Believing God the Father and Jesus is real is a beginning step to faith, but believing in their existence will only get us so far. We have to have faith. Faith trusts them with our lives. Faith lets them be in control instead of trying to force life to flow in the direction that we want. Faith follows them where they lead. Faith believes in them even when things don’t go the way we want them to.
I sometimes have trust issues, or maybe I should just admit I have control issues. I don’t do well when I have to realize there is nothing I can do to “fix” the problem. Which, let’s be honest, do we ever really have the ability to truly “fix” the problem? Also, I have patience issues, and wanting to be in control and being impatient aren’t two good qualities to have if I’m wanting to increase the fruit of faith. The truth is, faith requires patience and trust that God is in control. In fact, He probably does not need my assistance most of the time. I may not like trials, and I definitely don’t like waiting for answered prayers. However, I don’t want to be full of anxiety and stress, and in order to have “peace that goes beyond understanding” (Phil 4:7), I need to have real faith.
I want to have the faith that still trusts even if life isn’t going well. I want the faith that Stephen had when he asked God to forgive his attackers; the faith Paul had even though he had been imprisoned, flogged, ship wrecked, etc.; the faith Moses had when he denied the pleasures of Egypt and willingly chose “to share ill treatment with God’s people than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a time, considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt” (Heb 11:25-26).
Faith is what helps us to keep moving forward in life. It is what motivates us to willingly suffer for Christ’s sake. Faith helps us to not fear death, torture, poverty, etc., right now, because the Promise is more valuable than whatever happens to us now. True faith means to not seek this world’s treasures, but to seek God’s treasures no matter what pain we may suffer now. For pain now is only temporary; the Glory to come is eternal.
So, as I get closer to the spring Holy Days, and start self-analyzing in preparation for de-leavening myself and my house, I am going to try my best to draw closer to God in order to increase my belief to unmoving faith. And, I will trust that He will help me along the way.