Wednesday, July 10, 2013

American Faith?

I have a confession to make. In general, when I pray and talk to God about circumstances in my life or the life of my family I generally see God answer in a favorable way. It isn't always the answer we are looking for but it is still usually something that we can live with. There are very few times in my life when I have wrestled with a prayer and felt like it was falling on deaf ears... until recently. Even as I type this part of me feels guilty because I have seen God move in some amazing ways in the last few weeks and months but there are two prayers that I continue to pray without a hint that an answer is in sight.

The first is for a little girl I will call "S". I have been praying for S for over a year now. The short story is she is a small child that is "owned" by someone in another country. She is mistreated consistently and in the near future she will be forced into prostitution. I have to be honest - I am appalled that God hasn't intervened. Here sits an innocent child in need of His saving power which He is fully capable of doing and yet in all appearances He is doing nothing. Now, I do not really believe He is doing nothing. I believe with every fiber of my heart that He is orchestrating something (I pray a rescue). But what if He doesn't? What if she isn't rescued, like the millions of other trafficked and enslaved people in the world? What impact does that have on my faith?

Is my faith based on me believing/being good/doing right enough? Is my faith based on my own eyes and experiences and understanding? Is my faith based on my own timeline? If it is then it is worthless. If it is then it isn't faith in God, it is faith in me and I'm pretty sure that's called idolatry.

Instead I have to choose to have a faith that believes what the scripture says, but not the pick-and-choose-and-take out-of-context kind of way. I have to take it all together. When I do that, when I read the scriptures in whole and not piecemeal, I see that Jesus is full of compassion. I see that in this world we will have trouble but that He has overcome it. I see that I am to die to myself and take up the worst form of torture I can think of and follow Him. I see that I am never promised creature comforts or lots of money or health or an easy life. Those things are not in the scriptures.

What I am promised is that IF I am about His business and sharing the good news of Jesus with others that He will be with me. I am promised that if I acknowledge Jesus with my mouth and my life that He will stand before me in Heaven and cover me from the wrath of God that my sin would bring upon me. I am promised that if I seek Him, I will find Him, if I seek with all of my heart.

So, back to the original issue at hand. Does my faith only fit as long as the American dream is neatly wrapped inside of it? Does my faith have the firm foundation of scripture or is it pieced together from misquoted verses and ear tickling sermons?

I pray that it is based fully on the Words of my Lord alone. I believe and choose to believe even when there is no evidence that God is moving. I still choose God.

Please join me in praying for S. Please also join me in praying for Selah. Almost a year ago she had a near drowning that has left her with a severe brain injury and although her mother has been working hard seeking out ever medical advantage she has had little change. However, God is the God of miracles. This story grabbed a hold of my heart because sweet Selah had just been adopted and was finally with a family that loved her. I believe she still knows how much they do but it's so hard to hear that she was in such a sad place then given an amazing gift and now she is unable to enjoy it. Please join me in praying or her as well. You can check out her moms blog at http://myreallifebyyvonne.blogspot.com.

Thank you for joining me in praying for these special cases.