Faith as Fuel

Faith as Fuel

Let’s say you are working in a job that you can’t stand, or have duties/responsibilities that feel more like drudgery than blessing. Some of us have sick elderly parents to tend, or needy friends who constantly take and never give. You don’t feel that the paycheck of your 9-5 job is worth the stress you take home at the end of every shift. What do you do? To which thing or person do you go? What do you tell yourself? For me, it’s Netflix.

First, we should call it what it is. Ok so it’s not turning to the bottle or the needle. I’m not a traditional addict, but instead have chosen a much more “acceptable” way of dealing. I binge watch TV shows. It just wastes time and takes me into another world where problems are solved in 30 minutes. It’s not that bad right? Except that it is just another way of numbing the pain of an underwhelmed soul. There’s no public shame associated with distracting yourself from something you wish would change. Therefore it remains an untouched subject in my heart.

Second, remember that God blesses us in unexpected ways, places, and opportunities. Like I mentioned in my last post, I was enormously depressed because my first job out of college was “beneath my dignity” as a new graduate. Even so, I received many comforts and assurances from God that summer, through my coworkers and managers. (Not to mention a paycheck that got the job done) Then a few months later my favorite aunt invited me to live with her in Maui and work for her company. A job. In Hawaii. With a boss who is invested in my wellbeing. And all the people said AMEN.

What if I had gone straight into a brand new job after college and missed this opportunity? To be sure there are plenty of what-ifs, but this is a big one for me. God’s will for me in this season was the protection and love of family at this time. What might be just around the bend for you?

Third, consult the Lord. He has a plan and a future for you. Can I say it again? He’s on your side. If there’s a chance to make a change, jump for it. Some seasons are inescapable though, no matter how much you pray and try to change it. When we are hurting in this way the last thing we want to hear is an ignorant but well meant “It’s a blessing in disguise”. Let’s skip over those clichés and go straight to the truth.

  1. Pray for strengthened faith

“So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless. Now someone may argue, ‘Some people have faith; others have good deeds.’ But I say, ‘How can you show me your faith if you don’t have good deeds? I will show you my faith by my good deeds.’” (James 2:17-18 NLT)

We believe in God’s sovereignty and that his purposes get worked out in his time and specific ways. So consider this trial an opportunity to tending our garden in a special way. (James 1:2-4) When we keep working in the face of trials, our faith is proven and strengthened. Faith is the trust that God will do what he promised. Use your faith as fuel to keep on going and god will direct your path.

  1. Pray for patience

“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).

Read this verse over a few times. Do you notice anything interesting? It says that the Lord is patient toward you, not the other way around. He’s not up on his heavenly throne chatting with the Seraphim going, “Yeah, Molly is really getting impatient with this new plan I’m working on for her. I better finish up quickly so she can get on with it!” Ha! On the contrary, who am I to believe my plans and timing as better than the Lord’s? Let’s not forget either – our ultimate purpose is to love God and love each other. THAT is the calling with multiple expressions. So in this season, if I am stuck with no way out, I can still fulfill my purpose while I wait for something better.

Now all that truth sounds really good and all, but let’s be honest. It’s easier said than done. Just because I believe in God’s sovereignty doesn’t mean I like it all the time. The hard part for me is sucking it up and accepting the fact that I am not the master of my own life. Galatians 2:20 says “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me”. This is something that each person who follows Jesus must work on accepting but thankfully we don’t have to do it alone.

What do you think? Journal your thoughts as the spirit leads on the verses mentioned above:

  • James 1:2-4
  • James 2:17-18
  • 2 Peter 3:9
  • Galatians 2:20

Thanks for reading this month’s series on Work and Purpose, I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Please feel free to share how the Spirit moved you on the Tea & Testimony facebook page . As a thank you I have created free printables. Print and hang these words of truth where you will see them the most.

Seeking God: Reaching out

Seeking God: Reaching out

Reading: Psalm 9:9-20, Isaiah 53:5-6

Christ: You are valuable to Me in My kingdom. I was pierced through for the transgressions of all so that there may be no road block for you to come to me in faith and live with Me in Heaven forever.

 

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Think: It’s important for us to meditate not only on the comforting and Godly power of Jesus, but also on his crucified human form as well. Realize that from the cross He has already forgiven every transgression anyone has ever and will ever make. Nothing that I have done may ever prevent me from saying Yes to Him.

Pray: Dear Lord, help me to stay aware of my sin and conscientiously seek to take control of my urges and habits. Jesus reaches out His pierced hand to us, offering forgiveness of sins and everlasting life. Now let me also reach out and take hold of it to be led each day by Him.

Love Notes Series: Inseparable

Love Notes Series: Inseparable
Our acceptance of Jesus invites the acceptance of our broken selves to God.  Once covered in the righteousness of Jesus, we are inseparable from God’s protection from that moment forward.
“Who will bring a charge against God’s elect?” -Romans 8:33.
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Thank you for reading! Please feel free to leave a comment below or send us feedback at purediscipleblog [at] gmail.com. We love to hear from you!

~The PD Team

A Trembling Courage

I had a dream that I was being pursued by a group of thieves and murderers who wanted to kill me. I wanted to share it here because I’ve been working hard at my vocation in the past weeks and I just thought it was really cool.

 I was standing on sort of a hill and I could see the tops of their heads coming at me, the were wearing black masks so I could not see their faces. Instead of turning on my heel to run, I knew that I had a duty to stand there and deliver a speech of scripture to them. My voice was shaking tremulously and I had a very surreal moment where I couldn’t believe that it was me who was standing there. My thoughts were on the Apostle Paul who did the same thing, and who did much more than just read scripture, in much more dangerous and unknown territories.

Yeah for standing up for the Lord! Even though it was only a dream, perhaps it will come true. 🙂

 Psalm 25[aOf David.

In you, Lord my God,
I put my trust.

I trust in you;
do not let me be put to shame,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one who hopes in you
will ever be put to shame,
but shame will come on those
who are treacherous without cause.

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When is God good?

Is God good when I get what I want? Is He still good when I don’t get what I want?

At first glance, I want to say  “All the time”. But wait, is that true for me? Do I actually live my life like God is good, or do I stomp my feet and cry like a petulant child when I don’t get my way? This is a question that takes some soul-searching.

In this season of my life I just can’t seem to get over the very logical fact that I do not have the same life path as others. I have plans for myself that very obviously are not the same God has in mind for me. I know this because if they were, they would have happened already.

I’m struggling to accept it and work on myself and keep up the faith in the mean time, but my selfish childish voice inside can’t understand it. My being is absolutely divided-I want but cannot have.

Habakkuk 2:1-3

2 I will stand at my watch
and station myself on the ramparts;
I will look to see what he will say to me,
and what answer I am to give to this complaint.[a]

The Lord’s Answer

Then the Lord replied:

“Write down the revelation
and make it plain on tablets
so that a herald[b] may run with it.
For the revelation awaits an appointed time;
it speaks of the end
and will not prove false.
Though it linger, wait for it;
it[c] will certainly come
and will not delay.

The only way

I read this blog post from Lysa TerKeurst this morning, and it totally spoke to me:

No matter how many times I whispered over and over, “there’s no way,” this nagging sense of possibility wouldn’t leave me. It wove its way through every fiber of my being until I stood up and shifted everything I thought my family would be with one weakly whispered, “Yes.”

Aren’t there so many times in our lives when, presented with a seemingly crazy choice, we say “There’s no way…” It’s the choice between stability and uncertainty. Would I quit my job and become a missionary? Quit school to write for God? Sometimes the idea is so far away from what we imagine for ourselves that it gets immediately rejected before it has a chance to take hold. It’s probably true that “there’s no way” in my power, but Lysa reminds us of Jesus’ promise that He is the way.

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6)

If God is calling on you to do something for Him, there is a way — His way. I will trust in the Lord and lean not on my own understanding.