Tag Archives: faith

Leave It With God

It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good. —1 Samuel 3:18

When young Samuel informed Eli that God was going to put an end to his family, how did Eli receive the bad news?  He said, “It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good.”

When Abishai and Joab were surrounded by enemies, Joab looked at the situation and said, “Let us play the men for our people and for the cities of our God: and the LORD do that which seemeth him good.” (2 Sam. 10:12).

These expressions reveal a willingness to leave the outcome of their situations with God, who will do what is best. Instead of dictating to God how He needs to resolve our problems, how much better to leave our difficult situations in God’s hands. After all, isn’t God “able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Eph. 3:20). When we know God as we should, we will pray, “I leave it to Thee, Lord.  Do what seemeth to Thee good.”

For example. Suppose you have a friend in some trouble.  You have a plan that will help him. However, in the meantime, he comes to you to borrow some money that will only give temporary relief. His need is not for money.  His request for money limits your ability to help.  His low thoughts cannot rise to what you are able to do for him.

Why doesn’t your friend “ask or think” more “worthy” of your ability?  Because he does not know you well enough!  He measures your willingness and ability to help by his own weak power to ask.  Thus it is when we don’t know God’s exceeding abundant power to give beyond anything we ask or think our prayers are weak and anemic.

I recently read the following prayer of a man who really knew God, and was aware of his own weaknesses:  “Lord, what wilt Thou?  Do not heed my requests if Thou seest they are not good.  Do not do, or give this, because I ask for it.  Withhold it, if Thou, who seest the end from the beginning, seest it will not be for my good.  I am so foolish and ignorant before Thee, and Thou art so wonderful, so wise, and so good. … Oh, that I may be filled with the knowledge of Thy will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding—that I may enjoy the perfect rest which that knowledge will give.”

HOW MANY OF OUR PRAYERS ARE LIKE THIS?

PATIENCE

Ye have need of patience — Hebrews 10:36
     No one is born patient.  Babies come out of the womb with no patience at all.  What they want, they want it NOW.  If they don’t get it immediately they will let you know loud and clear!
Patience does not come naturally.  If patience was natural, why does God command us to “be patient” (1 Thess. 5:14; James 5:7)?
Patience is a virtue that must be developed over time. Peter tells us that patience is something we must “add” to our faith (2 Pet. 1:5-7).    Paul tells us the trials help us to develop patience (Rom. 5:3). Patience is also part of the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23).  When you and I are impatient, it shows we are walking in the flesh and not the Spirit.
When will find ourselves in the grip of impatience, it is time to cry out to the Lord and commit our situation into His capable hands. God may, or may not, immediately resolve the source of your impatience.  It is often a process.  We cannot pray, “Lord, I want patience, and I want it NOW!”  As the words of the gospel song goes, at times He removes our mountains one stone at a time. If we will just be patient, we’ll notice our mountainous problem is getting smaller with time.
As James 1:4 says, “But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”

How Big Is Your God?

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think… —Ephesians 3:20

The size of your faith will determine the size of your God.  God operates on our behalf within the parameters of our faith.  God desires to “shew himself strong” but His might is often dwarfed by our midget faith.   Jesus “did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief” (Mt. 13:58).  Jesus said, “According to your faith be it unto you” (Mt. 9:29).

On one occasion, the Bible says, “the power of the Lord was present to heal them” (Luke 5:17).  Unfortunately, only one man was actually healed.  Why were not more healed? The problem was not in the power—It was present! The problem was an absence of faith.

God invites us “open thy mouth WIDE, and I will fill it” (Ps. 81:10).  Our problem is we ask too little and think too small.  Our mistake is in thinking God is altogether such an one as ourselves (Ps. 50:21).  We ask according as a man would ask of another man, and therefore expect nothing more than what a finite man can provide.

After 2000 years, we are still standing around asking God, “Lord, IF thou canst do anything… help us.” And He still says to us, “IF thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.”

Ditch Diggers

Thus saith the LORD, Make this valley full of ditches. For thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, that ye may drink, both ye, and your cattle, and your beasts. —2 Kings 3:16-17

The armies of Israel were in a dry and desert place without water. A battle with the Moabites loomed ahead.  They would not survive without water.  God instructed them to dig ditches and He would fill them with water. The ditches would serve a two-fold purpose: (1) Provide water for refreshment and (2) give them victory in the battle ahead.

Digging the ditches required two things: They had (1) to have faith to obey, and (2) they had to work to dig—Faith and works! The ditches would not dig themselves.  No digging—No water!  No digging—No victory.

We live in a world that is spiritually dry and desolate.  The Word of God is liken to water (Eph. 5:26).  Without the water of God’s Word we will “dry up” spiritually.  God’s Word can provide “water” in our dry situations.  But as the Israelites had to dig ditches to receive the water, we must “dig ditches” to receive God’s Word in our dry circumstance.

Your personal devotions are times when you are “digging a ditch” for God to fill.  Like digging ditches, Bible study, prayer, and ministry can be hard work.  As you dig, the ditch looks empty.  By faith, keep digging trusting God to send the water.  Eventually God will fill your ditch with the water you need in the desert of your circumstance.

Are you in a crisis that has left you spiritually dry and thirsty? Are you facing a spiritual battle?  Then get DIGGING!  God will send the water of His Word if you will dig.  Don’t just scratch the surface. The water you need is there if you dig deep enough.

The Israelites were to fill the valley with ditches. The more ditches they dug (the more obedience), the greater the blessing!  As Matthew Henry says, “They that expect God’s blessings must prepare room for them.”

Faith Versus Worry

…this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. —1 John 5:4

At our church we sometimes sing the little chorus, “Why Worry When You Can Pray?” A great truth in that chorus.  But the opposite is equally true: “Why Pray When You Can Worry?”  That is, you cannot pray and worry at the same time—They are incompatible. If you pray, don’t worry. If you worry, don’t bother praying.

Worry is akin to fear and it has a paralyzing effect.  Worry never solves anything. It is a waste of time. It drains you emotionally.

Worry is sin, because it is a manifestation of unbelief. “Whatsoever is not of faith is sin” (Rom. 14:23). Worry is opposite of trusting God. Worry magnifies your problem above God, thereby turning your problem into an idol.

When you worry, you are focused on self and not the Lord. Instead of “Looking unto Jesus” (Heb. 12:2), we are looking away from Jesus to our problem(s).  I read where someone said, “Ego means ‘Edging God out.’” Amen! That is what worry does.

Worry makes you the victim, but faith gives you the victory.  How do you overcome worry?  By trusting God that He is working all things for good (Rom. 8:28).

So, what are you going to do? Trust God and pray? Or, fret and worry? Take your pick. You cannot do both.