When I was little our family would pile into the car every summer, drive to Minnesota and spend a week at the lake. This was before the day of the internet. We didn’t make reservations, we just drove until we found something that looked interesting.
We never doubted that we would spend a week at the lake. The minute my sisters and I got into the car with our suitcases we were already there.
It was as good as done. We weren’t sure about the journey, but the destination was guaranteed.
We understood that we might have to stop two or three times before we had success, but we had faith in our Dad’s ability to find what he had promised.
After driving two or three hours our Dad would stop at a small resort and walk to the office while the rest of us held our breath.
Sometimes the resort was full.
Sometimes it was too much money.
Sometimes our Dad didn’t care for the look of the place once he was closer.
We could tell by how he was walking whether he had success or not. If his head was down and he was walking with a determined gait we knew it was a no. If he was grinning, almost running back to the car we knew he had found the spot.
A couple weeks ago I was reading in Hebrews 11, the faith chapter. I turned there specifically because I was struggling. Struggling with weariness, questions, confusion; struggling to believe God had a good plan that He was working out; struggling ____________( You can fill in your own blank).
I know God is faithful, but I needed to be reminded just how faithful.
The first verse got me headed in the right direction.
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1 NASB)
William MacDonald has this to say about that verse.
“…it is a definition of what faith does for us. It makes things hoped for as real as if we already had them, and it provides unshakable evidence that the unseen, spiritual blessings of Christianity are absolutely certain and real…Faith is confidence in the trustworthiness of God. It is the conviction that what God says is true and that what He promises will come to pass.”
I would encourage you to read the rest of Hebrews 11. Think long and hard about the men and women listed there. Their faith was not in their ability to overcome obstacles, but in God’s ability to walk them through extreme difficulties. Sometimes the results were glorious, other times the immediate results were trouble and even death. Both are examples of faith in a good God.
As a child I had utter faith in my Dad. I never doubted that he would bring about what he promised.
As a child of God I need to have utter faith in the one who made me for His good purpose. He has been faithful in the past. He will be faithful in the future. Although the journey isn’t always easy, I can trust that my destination is sure.
For further study:
“While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen, for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” II Corinthians 4:18 (NASB)
“…it is impossible for God to lie, we may have strong encouragement, we who have fled for refuge in laying hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast…” Hebrews 6:18-19 (NASB)
“In this confidence let us hold on to the hope that we profess without the slightest hesitation – for he is utterly dependable.” Hebrews 10:23 (Phillips)
“Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him, the help of my countenance, and my God.” Psalm 41:11 (NASB)
This is a great reminder of the One we place our hope in! He truly is faithful.
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I agree, Lauri.
I’ve had reason to read this twice. Thank you, Karen, for this and all your posts about faith. Some smart person once said: faith must be exercised or it becomes weak when we need it most. The challenges, perhaps more than the happy events, provide exercise for our faith.
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I agree, Cynthia. The difficulties are what turn us to God. I sometimes wonder what I would be like without the difficulties God has carefully given me. I don’t wish for them, but I see their good purpose. I will pray that your difficulties wouldn’t overwhelm you.
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