One of my favorite pictures from the gospels is that of the father of the demon-possessed son. He was brought to Jesus and told Him the problem and said, "If you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us." To which Jesus answered, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." My favorite part is the father's tearfully honest answer, "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief."
The more we know God, the more we can truly believe Him and His ability to act on our behalf. But just because God can, that doesn't mean He always will. Genuine faith walks steadfastly with God for the pleasure of His company, not for His results.
Here are a couple more thoughts that I gleaned from Beth's study this week:
- Why did God put His Holy Spirit in us? God expressed His faithfulness to us in Christ, and Christ expressed His faithfulness to us in the Holy Spirit. And only through His Spirit can we, in turn, express our faithfulness to Him.
- Revelation 4:11 proclaims (in the old King James) "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for Thou hast created all things and for Thy pleasure they are and were created." Our calling is to please Him, and without faith it is impossible to please God.
- Our entire lives are lent to change. But who He is will never change. (see Heb. 13:8) As He reveals Himself to you, His heart remains the same. His faithfulness flows from who He is. To please Him, our faithfulness must do the same.
This whole study has been such a blessing. One thing I have grasped from it is that all nine of these qualities must flow through me from the Holy Spirit. I no longer have to work at being loving or kind or faithful. It's not up to me. I am just an earthen vessel, indwelt by God's treasure (the Holy Spirit) so that the "excellence of the power" may be of God and not me. (2 Cor. 4:7) Praise Him!
(Living Beyond Yourself, Beth Moore)