Nothing really. Like, I probably shouldn’t even be here trying to write about faith.
Because when I’m super honest, I’ve sometimes considered being done with God and faith. Why? Well, When Life is Interrupted by Struggle, faith seems to come apart at the seams. And then, I find myself admitting that It’s More About What God Hasn’t Done than what He has done for me.
Faith Is Not What I Expected
I used to think that to have faith that you had to only have Mountain-Top Moments, that you could never doubt, that you were a superhero of faith (check Hebrews 11). Well, guess what. I haven’t had a Mountain-Top Moment in what feels like over three years. In fact, I think I’ve been wandering the desert. And, ohhhh, how I’ve doubted.
Living out faith in a routine life is harder than anything I’ve ever done. When I read about all these people in the Bible with their messed up lives and faith in God, I compare. I compare my try-hard life to their lives. Is there room in the Extended Version of the Faith Hall of Fame for people like me who have messed up a lot and struggled with faith in God?
Faith Doesn’t Have to Be Loud
Have you ever bumped into somebody that you didn’t know who just perfumed the air with faithfulness? I’ve had conversations with strangers, and I’ve been able to recognize Christ in them, even without them mentioning his name, their church, or their faith. It is bizarre.
As a person who tries to place my faith in Jesus, my faith (even on the bad days) orients everything that I do. Faith does not just show up in my devotion time, but it should be a part of my aerial silks pastime, my reading, my thinking, my life planning. Even when I wasn’t sure if Christianity was something I wanted a part of my life anymore, even then my faith in God anchored my considerations.
Faith and God are inseparable
I’m far from faithful, and I sometimes lean too close to flighty when things get confusing or tough. But, God is faithful. I don’t trust him to be faithful sometimes because I’m not faithful. And from my perspective, I judge everyone against myself, even God–especially God. Yes, I know, such a small view of the world, but I’m me, and I see the world through my eyes.
Sometimes I just don’t see the point in working out my body (or my faith), but choosing to work out anyway, even when I don’t feel like it, offers amazing results over time. Honestly, isn’t that the case with any project? At one time, giving your bedroom seemed like an inspired idea but then you discovered cracked plaster under the wallpaper, which means extra work. You kept at it anyway, and your faithful work resulted in a renovated, dream bedroom.
Faith Requires the Turtle
Turtles move slowly but continue to their destination until they get there, or at least that’s what we think. Who knows if it’s actually true, but it works here. For me, faith often means plodding along in the disciplines of reading my Bible, praying, and fellowshipping with Christians even when I don’t feel like it.
Final Thoughts on Faith
I don’t know if any of these faith thoughts resonated with you, but for me, writing these out was an interesting exercise. I had to ask myself what I’d learned about faith. And I really don’t know that much. Faith can’t be a feeling about 99% of the time. I like when it is a feeling because then it is easy to be faithful.
Hebrew 11:38-40, The Message
“…making their way as best they could on the cruel edges of the world. Not one of these people, even though their lives of faith were exemplary, got their hands on what was promised. God had a better plan for us: that their faith and our faith would come together to make one completed whole, their lives of faith not complete apart from ours.”
That last line there fills me with hope because my life of faith might not include any of the outward torture that so many Christians have experienced for believing something that the world doesn’t understand, but God’s made a way that all of our faith lives matter.
So I’m curious. What Have You Learned About Faith?