Friday, March 20, 2015

Honestly, What Do You Believe?

“That’s not the way I prayed,” was a phrase I said to God when something didn’t turn out the way I thought it should.  Unfortunately, this isn't the first time I've had this conversation with the Lord.

Last week our challenge was to stay in continual rejoicing over what God has done and is doing in our lives.  When life lessons come into play though, it’s sometimes difficult to keep such a joyful attitude. 

During those situations we can be sure the world is watching what we will do to stay in faith.  They’re looking at us for strength and hope.  They’re wondering, do we really believe? 

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Don't miss out on this week's challenge (below).
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Psalms Manifested
To say that this has been a demanding week would be an understatement.  As soon as the “rejoice”challenge was put out there I knew we were about to go into battle.
My husband was faithfully singing the rejoice song every day and he was looking forward to what the Lord was going to do this week.  Then came the test. 
By now those who have been following Daily Favor know that with completely trusting God, tests and trials are a part of receiving blessings and favor from the Lord.  It’s a “no brainer” as some would put it.
On Monday the car broke down. Tuesday and Wednesday hubby had difficulty sleeping due to pain, so the house was at unrest most of those nights. (It’s part of the side effects from the medicines.)
When it came time to pick up the car on Thursday it broke down again, and again and again … ugh.  Besides the car klunking out, it also needed brakes.  The brake shoes were shot and the rotors were metal to metal.  Mr. Goodall (the mechanic) asked my husband how he could even drive the car.  He didn’t know the brakes were “that” bad. His response, “It was God keeping me safe.”
Psalm 91 was manifested once more with us resting in the shelter of the Almighty.
“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.  I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.
Because he (any believer) has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name.  He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him.  With long life will I satisfy him, and show him My salvation.” (from Psalm 91)

“God you know that I believe You will work this out, but …”  My not so subtle interrogation seemed justified in my thinking. 
I tried to talk my way out of it in confessing, “I’m not questioning You Heavenly Father, but how is this situation pleasing to You?  How does it look as a believer to have these problems keep arising?  This isn’t what I prayed would happen.”
In my conversation I thanked God that the car broke down across the street from our house and that my husband was able to get it started to take it to the mechanic. 
Proceeding in my thanks, I was grateful the bill wasn’t outrageous, and that someone gave us use of their vehicle while ours was being repaired so we didn’t need to rent one.  More thanks were given for God letting our friend be in town to drive us to the auto garage, and that the mechanic was in the car when it broke down a second time.  Are you seeing a pattern here?
When talking to God about my gratitude it became obvious that He was working things out all the time, but in a way others could see His hand on the situation.  He was blessing us while I was waiting on His favor.

Honestly, What Do You Believe?
The first thing our flesh wanted to do when the car issue came up was to panic, which would have caused us to walk in unbelief that God really does care what happens to us.  If we gave into feelings of desperation or fear we would have played right into the devil’s scheme.
However, leaning back on the promises of God it took me to this verse in Proverbs that I read last week.  I wrote it down in my journal not knowing I would need it this week, proving God is always ahead of us and knows our future.

“To do evil is like sport to a fool, but a man of understanding has wisdom.  The fear of the wicked will come upon him, and the desire of the righteous will be granted.” (Proverbs 10:23-24 NKJV)

Not believing God, is really evil thinking because it is calling God a liar. It shows lack of understanding of Who He is and how He keeps His word.  Believing God’s promise to take care of my needs (Philippians 4:19) demonstrated wisdom in operation, therefore my desires will be granted.
Along this part of the journey God put unbelievers in our path, so they could see how the Lord works in the heart of a man to show favor on His behalf.  Although the situation still isn’t completely remedied, this is what I heard God speak to my spirit, “I’m not done yet.”

“A good man obtains favor from the LORD, but a man of wicked intentions He will condemn." (Proverbs 12:2 NKJV)

He does this every single time!
What's funnier, I don't make him
get off & work around his arms!
Knowing the Lord is faithful helped us to keep singing, laughing and praising even through it looked like there was nothing to rejoice over at the moment.
We found joy in the first blossoms of spring, the rain, funny things cats do all the time, and belly laughed at some of the dumbest stuff just because we were overly tired.
To others we seem a bit strange or peculiar.  That’s OK, we like peculiar as it fulfills scripture in the life of a Christian.
We believe God is good, all the time.  He said a “good” (referring to a righteous person, not one that does good deeds) man receives, obtains favor from Him, so we will. Therefore, God will work this out for our good, wait and see.

Your Belief is Showing
Maybe you’re like millions of people who believe in God, the life of Jesus including His crucifixion and resurrection.  You even believe in Heaven and salvation. That’s not where your problem with the Bible is, but it lies in your believing what’s between the pages of the Holy Book when it applies to you personally.
It’s not enough to merely say we believe God and the Bible.  Our actions will prove to others what we really do believe. If we come unraveled at every test or opportunity when God is showing Himself to be real, our faith means nothing.
If we are continually struggling with what we believe, then we really don’t believe.  Our faith has to be greater than singing songs of praise or making simple declarations hoping things will come to pass.  We have to believe what we say we believe, without hesitation or fail in every situation.
We have to live what we believe.

This Week’s Challenge:
Forfeit the Struggle

I’ve encountered many situations this week where people have been struggling with what they really believe God will do in their lives.  

They’re about ready to throw in the towel of belief because they don’t see things working out as planned.  This is where we need to be honest about our own lives, while remaining strong in faith about what we believe.  

Our challenge - We are going to share our faith experiences with someone who is struggling with their belief, and be encouragers to help them through the trial.  Be honest about the things you battled over while waiting for God to answer your prayer.  Talk about how the Word of God brought you to the other side reinforcing what you believe.  

In sharing you will discover one of two things.  Your faith and believing God is growing stronger eliminating the struggle to believe.  Or, you’ll find out what you really didn’t believe, but said you did leaving them to wonder,
 “What do you believe?” 
 We Believe - Newsboys


Until next time, believe a good man obtains God’s favor.

Check Messages throughout the week.

“The Righteous receive My favor.”
Jesus Christ

 What’s New This Week: Click on book or link.

 by Johnnie Moore

Listen to his testimony on why he wrote this book on believing what you believe.


'Honestly: Really Living What We Say We Believe'
by Johnnie Moore


Maybe you don’t know the Living God that I know, but would like to have this kind of favor in your life also.  Click on the above tab “Tell Me” for more information on becoming a child of the Savior.

Content and Image Copyright from Favored1. Do not copy.

Scripture reference was taken from the New King James Bible Version provided by Gateway Bible
Image credit: Google Images or Dreamstime Creative Common License if not specified.
Image:  Faith in Action Hebrews 11:1  Psalm 91  Questioning God  Live What You Believe
Disclaimer Notes: Results may vary due to lack of belief.

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