Faith for Change

In the Gospel according to Mark, Jesus utters four words that are incredibly powerful.  He says, “Have faith in God” (11:22).  He proceeds to talk to them about having faith to move mountains and about the disciple’s prayer life.  In the previous blog post, we ended with a prayer to receive a burden and in today’s post, we will pray for God to help us.

How sad would it be if we pray for a burden but not the ability to do something about the burden? The burden may be outside of our normal capabilities, but God’s grace enables us to do all things.  If God calls us to the task, he will perform the work.

Where do we put our faith?

In Nehemiah chapter 2, we see Nehemiah make his approach to the king of Persia to ask for help.  At this point, who does Nehemiah believe will come to his aid?  Will it be King Artaxerxes, the King of Persia, or will it be Yahweh, the One True God?  Verse four gives us the answer.  When Nehemiah can speak to the king, he first prays “to the God of Heaven.”  The way it reads, this was a short, under the breath, type of prayer because in the next verse, he is making his burden known to the king.  Thanks be to God, for listening to our quick prayers when we are out of time (cf. Matthew 14:29-31).

Faith is believing in the promises of God (including His existence) and living as those promises are true (cf. Hebrews 11:1).  Many people “believe in” God but do not “trust in” Him.  So, they turn to personal ability, others, or fear and worry.  God does not fail.  The same God, who performed miracles in the Bible, is still on the throne today.  He will take care of today, as well as yesterday and tomorrow.  Again, if he calls us to do something, He will enable us.

Faith in God’s plan.

Nehemiah had trust in God’s plan.  Look at some more scripture that testifies to this.

“Moreover I said unto the king, If it please the king, let letters be given me to the governors beyond the river, that they may convey me over till I come into Judah. And a letter unto Asaph the keeper of the king’s forest, that he may give me timber to make beams for the gates of the palace which appertained to the house, and for the wall of the city, and for the house that I shall enter into. And the king granted me, according to the good hand of my God upon me.” Neh. 2:7-8

“Then I told them of the hand of my God which was good upon me; as also the king’s words that he had spoken unto me. And they said, Let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for this good work.” -vs. 18

“Then answered I them, and said unto them, The God of heaven, he will prosper us; therefore we his servants will arise and build: but ye have no portion, nor right, nor memorial, in Jerusalem.” -Vs. 20

If a burden is the ability to see things the way they are, then faith is the capacity to see things the way God wants them.  There is our reality, and then there is God’s reality.  If we are going to have a positive change in our communities, churches, and homes, we have to begin to see what God can do in them.

This is now our prayer.  “Father, help us to have a burden and see things the way they really are but also help us to see things the way You want them.  Show us what we need to do, what to say, and how to think.  Strengthen us for your work. To Your Name be the glory.  Amen.”