Been there. Done that. Bought the T-shirt.
Those that have fairly strong opinions about what faith is or isn’t will chime into the subject with their own (“scripturally proven and supported” (sound of throat clearing) positions.
However, my suggestion for your consideration is not that more faith is needed, but more wisdom. Here is what a rich stew of God, His Word, time, people and their experiences, and me and my experiences have taught me. Well…at least a fraction of it. The total would fill at least a book or two.
The Mustard Seed
Luke 17:6, “The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”
Because this is a verse in the Word of God, this one illustration has many rich lessons. One of them is that the amount of faith is not at issue in experiencing spectacular results.
Sometimes I’ve waited till I “sensed” I had enough faith before I would put what I had into action. Of course “sensing” enough faith is flawed reasoning to begin with because the very search for sensing something often takes a person the opposite direction of faith. Although emotions are God created qualities of the soul, how we use them, in the decision making process, is often more like walking by a kind of sight than it is by faith.
Add to that: I’ve found that many faith steps challenge what I’m feeling. It doesn’t support what I’m feeling. More often than not, what I’m feeling is based on my comfort zone and circumstances.
Another decision for waiting longer before taking action is often based on the flawed reasoning that great results have to have great starts. That’s. Just. Not. True.
G.K. Chesterton (a great success in his own fields of endeavor) said, “If anything is worth doing, it’s worth doing badly.” He was not lobbying for mediocrity. He was stating the obvious. We won’t go anywhere or develop anything if we don’t s.t.a.r.t. somewhere. Act on what you have. However…
Here’s The Turn In The Road
A man of faith that I highly admired, Dr. Claire Hutchins, spoke at my church back in the day. Since we were considered a Word of Faith church, I asked him questions about his faith. You see Dr. Claire Hutchins had done many mighty works with God throughout his ministry and I wanted to glean from his experiences.
He said something that, at the time, surprised me. He said, “I’ve discovered that I need less faith now and more wisdom.” He added that wisdom had directed him in what faith steps to take and how to take them.
Faith Without Works Is Dead. Faith Without Wisdom Gives God A Bad Name.
I’m not referring to what the Bible calls, worldly wisdom. I’m speaking of seeking God for His wisdom as much as you are His faith. And pleeeeeeeeease pleeeeeeeeease. Do not interject, “Brother Gary, read your bible. Those are the words of wisdom right there in front of your face. If it says it in black and white, speak it and act on it.”
I’ve watched too many folks take – what they called – faith steps – that did not produce faith results. I’ve been there. I’ve done that. I’ve bought a whole bunch of the t-shirts. What (we’ve) too often actually done is had a huge idea that would take God to pull off, and launched forward in faith because ask whatever you will…right? Nothin. Nothin happened. Or, the opposite happened that we were acting in faith for.
Then We Say…
- Faith doesn’t always see results
- The devil hindered
When God’s Truth Was…
He didn’t give you the marching orders you acted on. He didn’t order the sandwich you made for Him.
Thank God For His Mercy
He bales us out of our errors. Remember, we do need to start somewhere. But…we also need to be humbly teachable and learn instead of defending ourselves and doing the same dumb thing over and over and over and over and over again…..and….call it acting in faith in God’s Word.
There Is More Than One Way “To Skin A Cat”
My Dad used to say that. And, it’s true. In life and in a life of faith. Jesus said that He only did what He saw His Father doing and said only what He heard His Father saying.
There are many facets on the faith diamond. God’s wisdom shows us what facet He knows needs to be applied to each and every faith situation.
How Do I Get The Wisdom
- Ask God for it. James says, “If any man lack wisdom, let Him ask of God.”
- Then, don’t ignore the nudges of what I call, “Sanctified common sense.”
In other words, a six foot hole should be dug six feet deep unless God specifically, and clearly confirms the fact that you should only dig it 4 feet deep. If it should take 3 months to do justice to a project, don’t attempt it in 10 days unless you have a very clear, confirmed word from God. I know people who I think God has given a mercy ministry of bailing people out of foolish decisions. How do I figure any decision is foolish? When it doesn’t work as advertised.
Luke 14:8 advises us to count the cost of building a tower lest we start and aren’t able to finish. Counting the cost is far more than “great big ideas,” “faith confessions,” and people manipulations.
The mustard seed of faith contains many elements in it’s dna. Elements such as wisdom, patience, and love.
May your walk of faith be filled with wisdom, patience, and love. May you see many more God results than ever.
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