“You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” – Excerpt Acts 20:35 (NLT)
I feel like that man who said to Jesus, “I do believe; forgive my unbelief.”
Now, I’m giving myself a tough time over this. I’m doing my own head in! You see, I have always thought that you either believe or you don’t believe. It’s one or the other. There’s no middle ground, no in-between, no half-way; you’re either in or your out. There is no sitting on the fence, which would be extremely painful anyway. It’s like picking a pen up off the desk. You either pick it up … or you don’t. There’s no such thing as “try.” When we say to people, “I’ll try to do something or other;” at the end of the day, you have either done it or you haven’t.
So, when it comes to matters of faith, there is no such thing as “try.” You either believe … or you don’t. At least, maybe, perhaps, but what if … you “kind of” believe. You believe, but you doubt. Isn’t that saying that you don’t believe? Hmm. You can see where I’m coming from and what I’m getting at. My mind is doing somersaults and getting all twisted up and mixed up and so confused. Do I believe? Or not?
You see, when I went on my last mission trip to Poland, delivering supplies to a church there which was helping with the situation in Ukraine, I had no doubt whatsoever that it was the right thing to do, that it was the leading of the Holy Spirit who spoke to myself and my spouse, giving us both a vision of what we should do. And so we did. But then, whilst on mission, having heard of their desperate need for a minibus, I felt again the stirring of the Holy Spirit saying, “You can get one for them.” And it wouldn’t leave me, until I uttered the words, “We can try to get you a minibus,” to them.
Now there was an interesting turn of phrase, “We can try …” Oh, but there is no such thing as try! And as much as possible in my day to day decision-making and deliberating, I try to avoid using the phrase, “I will try!” And there it is again, “I try to avoid ...!” You see, Jesus said:
“Just say a simple, ‘Yes, I will,’ or ‘No, I won’t.’ Anything beyond this is from the evil one.”
Jesus says, “Just say yes or no.” OK, I get that, seems clear enough. But then: “anything beyond this is from the evil one.” Oh, my goodness! That’s pretty stark! That’s pretty serious!
Anyone else been in that same boat, where you believed in something, believed for something, and then it just didn’t happen or seem to be happening very quickly? If you’re anything like me, we start to doubt, don’t we? Did I hear from God? Was it the Holy Spirit? Really? I do believe, but please forgive me my unbelief.
You see, we’re just over half-way there. We’re raising funds to buy a minibus, fill it with goods and supplies, and deliver it to the church in Poland to help with their relief effort in Ukraine. And we’re just over half-way towards raising the necessary funds. And … we’re stuck. And to be fair, I’m stuck! I’m stuck in the middle doubting my belief, exploring my unbelief, trying (there it is again, trying) to give my head a wobble, to declare amidst my doubting that, I BELIEVE! Because anything else is from the devil, and I don’t want him in my head!
Our enemy, the devil, is very clever at whispering in our ears, “Did God really say ..?” It’s how he tempted Eve in the garden, and it’s how he tried (well, he had to try, didn’t he) to tempt Jesus. And it’s how he is tempting us today. It’s how he tempts us to flounder in our faith, whispering, “Did God really say ..?” And we can all fill in the rest of the sentence: provide a minibus, you are worthy, you are loved, you are cared for, you’re never alone, I’m always with you, even when you can’t see, hear or feel me, I’m always working in the background, I’m working things out for good. Did God really say those things (and all those things you can end your own sentence with)? YES, He did!
So, we rejoice that we’re over half-way there to raising the funds we need for the minibus appeal. We trust that God will provide, through His provision and His people, and in His time. All we must do is keep stepping out in faith, believing.
May we pray: Thank You, heavenly Father that You never leave us or forsake us, You have and always will love us, and You have a plan and a future for us, and it’s good. Thank You for providing for us every day, and we thank You for completing this minibus mission, in the name of our Saviour, Christ Jesus, and for Your glory; Amen.
If you’re struggling with unbelief right now, we would like to pray for you – please get in touch. Don’t feel as though you have to battle alone. You can also join us on the PrayerMate app and get in touch to join a prayer group. May God Bless You.
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