Wednesday, July 17, 2019


And Jesus answered saying to them, "Have faith in God. Truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be taken up and cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says is going to happen, it will be granted him. Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.” Mark 11:22-24
Faith is something that grows as our relationship with God grows.  We start out as babies in our faith.  Through different situations God strengthens our faith.  Four ways God strengthens our faith are:
By Testing Our Obedience– God sometimes asks us to do things that are seemingly impossible or illogical to our way of thinking. Faith is often a risk. When it’s a risk it means we can’t understand it all in advance. We may begin to doubt or question when we think God should or should not have done something or question the way He should do it. We cling to what we’ve got, because we are fearful of losing it. God wants us to let go so He can bless us.  He desires to take us to a new place with a greater blessing.
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 permission.   God’s permission brings God’s protection, provision and purpose. In those times when we see God so obviously answer our prayers and provide for us, it is comforting and overwhelming.  He takes care of us in every way and in every situation.  During times of waiting, when we feel like He isn’t hearing, remembering times He has provided in the past can help us to trust Him to provide again.  However, He doesn’t always answer or provide for our problems in the way we think He will. It is important to be open and surrender fully to Him.   
By Using Our Resources– For many people finances are the greatest test of all.  There is a direct relationship between how we handle money and the spiritual depth of our lives. In fact Jesus says if I’m not faithful in handling material wealth He will not trust me with spiritual wealth. Waiting for the money to come in that we need to pay our bills or fund a mission project is very hard and sometimes we try to take things into our own hands. But God wants us to trust Him and not try to fix it on our own.  
By Making Us Wait- If every prayer were immediately answered, you wouldn’t need faith and your faith wouldn’t need to be increased. But it is not that way. We have to wait on things. 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. We definitely seek God more when we are scared, desperate, or in pain.  God is more interested in growing our faith than anything else.  It is human nature that we hate to wait. We hate waiting in lines. We hate traffic, doctor’s offices, or being put on hold on the phone forever. A large percent of our lives is spent waiting. If we can’t learn how God wants to stretch and grow our faith during times of waiting we miss out on much of the faith lessons that God wants to teach in our lives.  But the times He really grows us are during through waiting. Waiting for something you never wanted to wait for. While we are waiting God is with us. He does not leave us alone. God does use difficulties, demands and dollars, but He also uses delays to build our faith.  
God’s encouragement to us again and again in the Bible is, Don’t give up. Look up to God and realize that He is with you. As we wait on Him He not only increases our faith but He works out His perfect plan for our lives.  

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