Foundational … or Conditional?

I’ve been working through Kelly Hall’s excellent study guide, “Courageous Faith.” Today I’m pondering this question: “Is my faith FOUNDATIONAL or CONDITIONAL?” Kelly writes, “Foundational faith believes God’s character remains unchanged regardless of our changing circumstances.”

Today I choose to put my faith in God even when it’s hard, when the days are long and my prayers are not answered immediately. I believe that God is real, that He exists and that He knows me. I believe that He will never leave me or forsake me. I believe that He is able to do more than I can ask or imagine.

How about you? How can I pray for you? Are you struggling today to believe that God sees you, hears you and knows your every innermost need? How can you choose today to make your faith foundational, rather than conditional?
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#foundationalfaith #courageousfaith #faith #evangelicalatheisttoevangelicalchristian

Isaiah 40:12-13 – of measuring

“Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with a span, enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance?

Who has measured the Spirit of the LORD, or what man shows him his counsel?” – Isaiah 40:12-13 ESV

I am 20 pages into, “None like Him,” by Jen Wilkin. It is reminiscent of “Knowledge of the Holy,” by A.W. Tozer, an all-time favorite of mine.

I haven’t been able to stop thinking about Wilkin’s words, “Who has measured everything? God has. Who has measured God? No one.” Let that sink into your heart and mind.

I must accept that, like all of God’s creations, I have limits, and boundaries, places I cannot reach. I cannot be two places at once. I cannot hear a thousand distinct voices at once. I cannot accomplish a multitude of different tasks at once.

But, God can. And He does.

God is without limit, infinite, immeasurable.

And, yet, He loves us. And, yet, He loves ME. He enters into time and space to show His love and goodness to His finite creation.

And all that I can do in response is praise Him.

Would you praise Him with me?

TWIG

The strength of meekness

In case you’re hungering for more, after my last post’s look into the verse, Matthew 5:5, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”   That adjective for meek (or gentle or humble), the Greek word praÿs, is found in three other places in the Bible.

  • Matthew 11:29 “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
  • Matthew 21:5, “Say to the daughter of Zion, “Behold, your king is coming to you, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.”
  • 1 Peter 3:4, “but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”

Jesus Himself was gentle and humble.  And God wants our hearts to be filled with gentleness and quietness.

This brought to my mind, Galatians 5:22-23 which lists the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  So, yep, I looked that up, and in fact, that word gentleness has the same Greek root as “meek” in Matthew 5:5.   (It is the noun form of the adjective.)  This Greek word for meekness/gentleness is found in:

  •  Ephesians 4:1-2, “walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love…”
  • Colossians 3:12-13, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness and patience, bearing with one another and if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”

God wants us to be compassionate and kind, humble and meek and patient, and forgiving – and He is all of these things toward us.  He is not asking us to do anything that He didn’t do first.  He modeled it for us.  He loved us first, while we were sinners – and now He’s telling us to go and do likewise.

  • James 1:21, “Put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word which is able to save your souls,”
  • James 3:13, “Who is wise and understanding among you?  By his good conduct, let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom.”

James is pointing out (1) that we should receive God’s Word with meekness and (2) the meekness that wisdom gives us.

In our modern American society, meekness is too often seen as weakness, rather than strength.  Yet, I have learned from the struggles of my daily life what strength it takes to be meek and gentle, that it is actually weakness that causes me to give way to all of those Colossians 3:8 deeds of the flesh (anger, wrath, malice, slander and obscene talk).

Would you join me in praying that God would strengthen us as women, wives and mothers, to have the strength to be meek, and the power to be gentle?

TWIG