I believe that God created the universe and the earth and gave life to everything;
I believe that He is eternal, existing through all time;
I believe that He is sovereign over everything;
I believe that my God is faithful, loyal, dependable, good, holy, just, wise;
I believe my God has limitless strength & knows all things;
I believe that my God is righteous in all His ways and loving toward all that He has made; and
I believe that the Bible is “God-breathed” and true
So why do I still struggle with unbelief?
It’s not that I don’t believe IN Him – of course I do – I made that decision 8 years ago. But do I BELIEVE Him and all that He promises for ME? Do I really believe He can do what He says He can do? Do I really believe I am who He says I am? So often I whisper to myself how unworthy I am, how fearful I can be, how weak I am in certain situations, how self-serving I can be, how discouraged I can be. But if I am a true follower of Jesus Christ, all those whispers are lies that are waged against me to veer me off course from the plan God intended for me. Oh, how easy it is for me to get distracted.
There’s a story in the Bible (Mark 9:14-24) which recounts Jesus healing a boy with an unclean spirit since childhood. When the father presented the boy to Jesus asking for healing, he asked Jesus IF he could do anything for them. Jesus responded “If you can! All things are possible for one who believes” (Mark 9: 23), to which the father cried out “I believe; help my unbelief!” And that is where I’m left pondering. Am I struggling with unbelief? Quite possibly unbelief is a stronghold that is preventing me from living that abundant life that God promises to us if we choose to believe HIM.
He just asks us to believe Him – He will do the rest. This is the phrase that resounded in my head and heart this week as I travelled to Texas to be at the bedside of my precious Father-in-law as he deals with end-stage cancer. Seeing this disease rob my Father-in-law of so much of his independence, health and joy has been painfully hard. At times I’ve prayed for complete healing and restoration, knowing that my God is capable of miracles. And at other times I’ve prayed for a swift end to it all, knowing that my God is capable of that too. But right there in my prayers I hear him whisper to me “My will be done, not yours”. I have to step away from the circumstance and just trust God. I can’t just believe IN Him and then fall to pieces when the going gets tough. I either believe or I don’t. At the end of the day I have to choose simply to believe. I have to choose to strip away my unbelief when circumstances are overwhelming.