Faith always seems so easy until we’re called to live it out.
We’ve most likely all been there.
You know, that awkward and uncomfy place of having our faith stretched. (Which in my estimation is akin to taking your bottom lip and trying to stretch it over your head…)
And honestly, we could go back pretty far in the Bible to see examples of folks who had their faith stretched too.
My purpose in writing this post is to help us all remember — myself included — that our often-foggy faith journey requires moving ahead, even when it makes absolutely no human sense.
Faith Followers in the Bible
Noah’s faith journey involved building a colossal boat in the face of a promised cataclysmic flood.
I’m sure this made no sense to Noah, especially since there’s a very good chance that at that point in history he’d never experienced rain.
Then add to that the fact that it took him 100 years to build the ark.
Three words for you.
No. Power. Tools.
But he plowed ahead in obedience to God’s faith call.
Good thing he did. He and his family were the only survivors.
For many years Abraham waited for the God-given promise to come true.
He and Sarah had even gotten a little ahead of themselves at one point when their faith flagged and faltered.
Then after years of waiting for the son of their old age – for the son whose name meant “laughter” — the promise came true.
Then after a few short years, God asked Abraham to do the unthinkable.
I’ve always been awestruck at how Abraham didn’t question. Didn’t do anything except be completely obedient.
I guess his years of faith-following had stretched his faith in the God who would provide.
“You want me to do WHAT?!?”
Okay, I’m embellishing the story a bit here. (Sorry, my writer’s imagination is sometimes a bit flighty…) 😉
I can imagine Ananias’ reaction when God told him to go to Damascus and find Saul.
Saul! The one who had launched a vendetta against followers of The Way. Had held Stephen’s robe and consented to his death while the young man of God was stoned at the hands of the religious leaders of the day.
Surely Ananias must have questioned the sense of following God’s command.
But he followed anyway. And Saul went on to become Paul, one of the first missionaries and the author of a large chunk of the New Testament.
The Young Nation of Israel
One more quick example and then I’ll move on. Promise. (Sorry, but this whole faith thing fascinates me!)
Through mighty signs and wonders, God delivered the young nation of Israel from slavery to Egypt. As a pillar of cloud by day, and a pillar of fire at night, God traveled with His people.
But have you ever stopped to consider that God didn’t lead them in the most direct route to the Promised Land?
Instead, He led them to the Red Sea. And they couldn’t possibly move as fast as Pharaoh and his chariot-wheeling army.
Sure enough, they got pinned between the sea and the Egyptians.
Why would God do that???
The Point of Faith-Stretching
All of these examples and so many more that I didn’t have room to list — Joseph, David, Jacob, Job, Jeremiah, Nehemiah, the disciples, and oh, so many more — teach us the truth about those foggy-faith moments that leave us scratching our head and saying, “Huh?”
They all point to how big God really is.
He’s big enough to:
- enable Noah to build a boat and save his family.
- break forth the fountains of the deep to destroy evil.
- fulfill a promise made years before, even to two “past-child-bearing-age” octogenarians-plus.
- miraculously provide a sacrifice as a substitute — not just for Isaac and Abraham, but for us!
- protect Ananias and show grace and mercy to Paul.
- deliver His people in a way that revealed His great love, power, and glory.
My First Big Faith “Aha” Moment
The truth of what faith-walking is all about hit me shortly before I wrote A PATH LESS TRAVELED (Book 2 in the Miller’s Creek series).
As is usually the case, that spiritual theme of following when faith doesn’t make a lick of sense has played out in my life time and time again. (Guess I need stretching more than most…)
Like Trish in the story, I’ve had to learn to let go and plow ahead in obedience, even if I can’t see the way.
I have to trust that the God I follow is big enough to stretch my faith, provide for and protect me and mine, but especially reveal Himself to me in ways I would never have experienced otherwise.
Thank You, LORD, for leading us into full faith in You — even when, at the time, it doesn’t make sense.
A recently-widowed young mother is tired of being rescued.
Though surrounded by friends and family, Trish is determined to blaze a path for herself and her daddy-starved little boy without outside help. Unfortunately, her attempts to run a small town business just doesn’t pay the piles of bills.
Though the new attorney in town seems interested in both her and little Bo, the timing is all wrong. At heart, she’s a small town girl, but will her current life circumstances mean leaving Miller’s Creek?
Or can she see past her limited human understanding to take a path less traveled?
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- What I Do To Impact Lives Through Story (Sneak Peek at Miller’s Creek #8 – no spoilers!)
- TOUGH QUESTIONS BLOG SERIES: Does God Condone Violence and War?
- The 1 Thing Every Human Heart Wants
- Miller’s Creek Family Tree (to keep all those relationships straight! Free Download of the “family tree.”)
- Searching for Peace? You’ll find it here.