April 19, 2022

“How Long” Faith

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And it is impossible to please God without faith.  Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him. Hebrews 11:6

Do you ever have a hard time reconciling the reality of God on His throne, with the reality of life on the streets?

A life of faith is often a life of tension.  There’s a tension to faith, not because God’s goodness or His power is unreliable, but because faith often struggles with the timing of God. Even God’s own prophets in the Bible cried out, “How long, Lord, must I call for help?” (Habakkuk 1:2).  Yes, “How long will you forget me?” David, writer of the Psalms cried out, “How long will you look the other way…how long must I struggle with anguish?” (Psalm 13:1-2).

A life of faith is inevitably a life of waiting. John Beeman calls this faith we are called to How Long Faith. How Long Faith has several characteristics:  it lives between how things are and how things will be.  How Long Faith doesn’t interpret silence as absence, and it is certain of God’s ultimate triumph over evil.  Finally, this faith rests in quiet confidence in the sovereignty of God.[1]

How do we cultivate this type of faith? The Bible book of Hebrews 11 is sometimes called the “Faith Hall of Fame.”  There you’ll find ordinary men and women who determined to believe God, despite the difficult life circumstances God allowed in their lives.  They knew, and you and I can also know, that God is still the “blessed controller of all things” (1 Timothy 6:13-16 Phillips).  Nothing will ever change that, or His love for you.

 

Resource reading: 1 Timothy 6:13-16

[1] Beeman, John. “Tough Faith in Hard Times: ‘How Long Faith.'”  Stonecreek Christian Church, March 13, 2022.  Rancho Santa Margarita, CA.  Sermon.