When faced with a challenge, do you respond with faith or fear?
Week 32 – Celebrating 100 Years of Oswald Chambers
VERSE: “Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?” Matthew 8:26
OSWALD: “When we are in fear we can do nothing less than pray to God, but Our Lord has a right to expect that those who name His Name should have an understanding confidence in Him. God expects His children to be so confident in Him that in any crisis they are the reliable ones. [Unfortunately] our trust is in God up to a certain point, then we go back to the elementary panic prayers of those who do not know God.” – (My Utmost for His Highest, August 12th)
Read the entire post:
How It Spoke to Me…
It seems like every year I read My Utmost for His Highest, this entry hits me hard.
Life can be challenging and it’s so easy to give into fear. This year is no different.
- I’ve said yes to a ministry position that I’ve never done before, with a huge event coming up soon (September 21-22, 2018 in Great Falls – in case you’d like to come!)
- I’m in the process of signing a new book contract with a new publisher (Revell, a division of Baker Publishing – I’m so excited!)
- Our renter just moved out, and we’re doing extensive remodeling to our house in Whitefish
Plus, I’ve got brand new grand-babies that I want to spend time with! (Check out these beauties!)
God’s grace has been more than sufficient this summer, but it’s a lot of plates to spin and I worry I won’t be able to keep them all in the air. (However, I’m inspired by this guy!)
Though my heart is overflowing with gratitude, at times I battle a bit of my usual M.O. (modus operandi – or as I like to call it, “Massive Overwhelm”).
Unfortunately, whenever I give into overwhelm or feel inadequate for the task, I tend to waffle and waver, dancing with my doubt rather than standing against it.
Why do I do that, I wonder?
After all, I believe God set the moon and stars in place, that He does miracles today and turns impossibilities into possibilities…why do I struggle to believe He might want to accomplish something difficult in me and through me?
“O ye of little faith!” That’s the diagnosis Jesus gave His disciples that stormy day in Matthew 8:26. After an unusually strong storm frightened the men so badly they awakened Jesus, insisting He do something, Jesus rebuked them.
Because the problem wasn’t the storm. It was the disciples lack of faith in Jesus’ ability to take care of them.
“What a pang must have shot through the disciples,” Oswald writes in My Utmost for His Highest.
They had missed a chance at faith yet again. “And what a pang will go through us,” Oswald continues, “when we suddenly realize that we might have produced downright joy in the heart of Jesus by remaining absolutely confident in Him, no matter what was ahead.”
How I want to learn this “absolute confidence” in God. When I read this entry during one of my waffly-wavery, freak-out-rather-than-faith-up days, I responded in my journal:
Oh Lord, I want to be one of your “reliable” ones – a woman who isn’t fickle-hearted and fainty, whiney and ungrateful when faced with something challenging – but one who rises to the task with faith in her heart and Your name on her lips.
It remains my continual prayer, for I want to produce joy in Jesus’ heart every day.
And today, like most days, offers an opportunity to do just that. But it comes down to a really important question: Will I choose faith or will I choose fear?
Will I believe what God has promised BEFORE I give way to my emotions?
BEFORE I fixate on the difficult challenge I’m facing?
BEFORE I rush to fix it on my own rather than invite God into the situation?
That’s what the “reliable” ones do. They include God in the equation before they react. Because of that they are able to stand confidently, bravely, victoriously. Even in the midst of unusually strong storms.
Though I fail to exercise my faith as regularly as I’d like, the good news is this…tomorrow will give me another chance to overcome. After all, that’s just the way life is.
I’m asking the Lord to help me answer whatever comes with the confident faith of a woman who knows Him intimately rather than the “elementary panic prayers of those who don’t know God.”
Spinning all the plates He’s given me to spin, for He holds each one – as well as me – in the palm of His more than capable hands.
<< Read WEEK 31 – “Learning to Overcome | Guest Hannah Keeley”
Read WEEK 33 – “Receiving a Hard Word from Jesus” >>
I’d love to hear from you… what helps you to respond to challenges with faith instead of fear?