Sometimes the working out of our faith appears to put us out on a limb. We prayerfully make decisions and sometimes those decisions don’t appear to be the logical or practical approach. Yet, we feel and believe we are compelled by the Spirit of God to turn down a certain road. That can be a scary place from a human point of view. However when we experience the peace of God, we are encouraged and determined to move on to whatever He has planned, even if we do not grasp what that plan looks like. It is often one step at a time in sheer faith.
It continues to facinate me that our faith and the building up of it is so precious to the heart of God. It is for the very building up of this faith and trust in Him that we are allowed trials and heartache. When there is a situation when we can’t imagine the good outcome and there are many “whys,” we have many opportunities to again place our trust in God. Until we reach heaven our faith is a mix of belief and unbelief. This is so powerfully illustrated in the book of Mark 9:23-24 where a father is approaching Jesus over the horrific trials in parenting his young son. This father asks for the Lord’s help.
“What do you mean, ‘If I can?'” Jesus asked. “Anything is possible if a person believes.” The father instantly cried out, “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!”
There are so many situations when we ask for the Lord’s help that we can’t help, from a human point of view, be indecisive in our faith. It may be in the working out of a relationship where the other person’s heart toward us has grown cold. We know that God can change anything but yet recognize that people have a free will and that attitude about us may never change. When prompted to pray about that relationship we may think, “Lord, if you can.”
We may be looking at a job loss, or an impossible situation at work or a road block in our educational career. There can be hundreds of such situations where we know that God can do something, but in our hearts we say, “Lord, if you can.”
Part of that indecision may well be an acceptance that God can work, but when He chooses not to, the outcome is still overseen by Him with an allowance and promise: “And we know God causes everything to work together for good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.” (Romans 8:28)
And so in our faith-building situation allowed by God for our ultimate good, we ask in belief knowing that God can make all things possible And at the same time, trusting in Him, when His plans differ from ours. Instead of Lord, if you can, help us to pray, Lord, I am praying in this direction with faith you are able to accomplish anything. But if you choose not to act in this situation, Your will be done. We may have a long time of waiting. We may experience heartache, grief and pain and a testing of our patience. But with such prayers, faith is strengthened and our ability to accept that somewhere, somehow God has good built in to our future, in ways we could never imagine.