…you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—…may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him…
That is what happens, right? I’m floating along on this cloud of “yippee Jesus” and the spiritual life is good – so good – and then BLAM! Not floating anymore. No reason really – but I’ve apparently crash landed. The cloud is embarrassingly flat – and it all seems stupid and completely out of place for real life.
The mind games begin:
“Ok, let me think and reason this out. I know I can make sense of this; then I will know how this piece fits into the new theology You are working in me.”
But the reasoning doesn’t work – instead I feel lost – and then I feel despair. “Despair” is not a good sign for me. Despair is a chest wound that bleeds hope. Faith is dying. From some distant place I faintly hear: “Medic!”
It’s a couple of days before the bleeding stops. Then a visitor reminds me – you were on the battlefield.
When I’m in over my head, when I’m caught up in the fray And my strength is failing. In the presence of my foes, You anoint my head with oil Till my cup’s overflowing. You grace my heart to believe again. – On the Battlefield by Kathryn Scott –
It’s a mystery to me. ..can’t begin to explain it. Don’t even know why the Enemy would waste the ammo shooting at me –
— unless God was using it to test the genuineness of my faith. If that’s the case then it was a gift.
This is what I’m learning. Faith is a gift of grace. It is not a feeling nor is it a comprehending of facts – it is a wonder. My faith is only mine because it is a heavenly implant. The testing is for me. So I can learn something about its substance and its guarantee – uh, lifetime warranty. And in this process it will result in praise, glory and honor to Him.
I don’t know how sound this exegesis might be but I do feel confident about the message to me.
About the World?
Needed: Faith, Hope, Love