Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Four Ways God Fortifies Our Faith Part II

"For a little while you have had to suffer great and all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed." 1 Peter 1:6-7

This week we are talking about faith, making our faith stronger, and four ways God fortifies our faith.

1.    By Providing for our Problems 
Nothing ever happens by accident in the life of a follower of Jesus Christ. Everything is Father-filtered.  Nothing comes into your life if you’re a child of God, without God’s permission. It couldn’t happen without God’s approval.

God’s permission brings God’s protection, provision and purpose. Romans 8:28 says And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

God may negotiate my present failure for my future success (or His success). But, the real tests of our faith are sometimes internal (doubt, depression, despair), not circumstantial. 

Sometimes God has to custom-make a problem to grow our faith.
Jonah had a custom made problem.  It just swallowed him up and got his attention.  Sometimes God creates problems that swallow you up.  You say, "There’s nothing else to look at except the Lord."
Whatever is the reason for the problems you are experiencing they shouldn’t discourage you, but rather encourage you because they show that God is not through with you yet and still wants to use you to fulfill His plan and purpose.  It isn’t uncommon for us to go through many kinds of problems or storms in our lives that test your faith.  In fact, much of the book of James was written to teach us this.  “My friends be glad, even if you have a lot of trouble. You know that you learn to endure by having your faith tested.” 3. James 1:2-3 (CEV)

Testing comes from God to help me to STAND.  Trials come from Satan to cause me to FALL.  If the problem you are experiencing is in order to test your faith, God is able to give you the victory through it. 

The secret is surrender to God’s hand when we are facing problems in our lives.  It is not a matter of trying to work it out on our own.  Instead of fighting against God and the circumstances, we need to turn our problem over to Him and learn to trust in His strength and wisdom.  When you are going through a problem you need to change matters of CARE into matters of PRAYER.  In fact, here is a basic rule to live by.  If it is big enough to WORRY about, it’s big enough to PRAY about.
God uses these kinds of things to test our faith.  If life were easy, then it wouldn’t require any faith. If you could feel God all the time, then you’d just go by your feelings.  Sometimes God removes the feeling of His presence just so you learn to trust Him in the difficulties.  We may learn something about how strong we are in the fire, but what God really desires is for us to learn about Him.

What are you learning from the problems you are experiencing in your life?  One very important lesson that we can all learn from this storm is:  More can be accomplished in one moment in God’s will than hours of intense labor outside of God’s will

Scripture to Claim:
"I have refined you though not as silver. I have tested you in the furnace of affliction."
Isaiah 48:10

Devotional Archive