The only absolute in life is there are no absolutes. Ever heard that phrase before? Most likely you have. But, there is one absolute; and that is, at some time, everyone’s life, as we know it on earth, ceases to exist. Did you catch that I said life on earth? I happen to be one who has a strong belief in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I believe in an eternity… that there is life after death.
No, this isn’t going to be a message on eternity; it is more about faith and trust. I have been hearing a lot lately about “joy in the journey.” That it is not about the destination or our arrival that matters as much as how we spend the time getting there (there being eternity). It is hard to look at life as a journey – we are a very goal-oriented society. Have you ever been in a situation where your whole heart’s desire, your goal in a particularly difficult situation, was to bring God glory? You wanted to respond in a way that honored God, yet you found yourself responding in ways that seemed counterproductive to that goal.
Take for instance my injury of a few months ago, where I found myself only able to get around via a wheelchair. Now, I was fairly confident that at some time I would walk again (it was more a matter of how and when, and with what limitations, if any); but even so, for those first couple of weeks, it was a little uncertain. I wanted my actions and my prayers to reflect my faith and trust in God, but even that came with some difficulty. If I pray asking God for healing then am I doubting – translation, not trusting that God will work things out. If I pray to accept whatever the outcome, then do I not have enough faith that God could choose to heal me?
The faith vs. trust issue is in everyday life. For example, when we are fired from our job; do we pray for God to help us find another trusting that He will provide? Or, do we ask others for leads and contacts, frantically searching the newspaper, calling every friend we have asking for help? When we are diagnosed with a terminal or a permanent life-changing illness or injury, do we pray for healing? Or, do we pray to accept the disease or outcome? When our adult children come home and tell us they getting a divorce, do we pray asking for healing of their marriage or pray that we are able to accept the outcome?
Life is full of all kinds of these little twists and turns. We can agonize over them or we can find the joy in the journey. Not joy in a “happy” sense-but joy in knowing that God is in control. Joy in knowing that nothing is happening in our lives that God is not aware. Joy in knowing that as long as we rely on Him… the outcome will be as it should. It is too easy to get hung up in the faith vs. trust issue. When we focus on the either or question, we lose sight of the bigger picture. As soon as we ask the question, “Am I honoring God with my faith or dishonoring Him with my lack of trust,” we have taken the focus from God and placed it on us.
While all of the examples above appeared to be either or situations, they really were not. We can pray for healing at the same time that we pray to accept the circumstances. It’s not about one or the other. Faith and trust go hand-in-hand. The important thing is that we are taking our concerns and heart to the One who can do something about our need. When we go to God in genuine heartfelt prayer, we are exhibiting and growing in faith and trust!
It is little discoveries like finding out that faith and trust do not have to be an either or that gives this gal joy in her journey.
Until next time,