Smeagol is Free!
A hermitudinal view of...stuff...


Thoughts on God: Faith

I often struggle in my faith. Who doesn't, right? What's difficult is learning to be honest about it.

At some point in the summer, I kept coming back to Paul's prayer in Ephesians 3. I was stuck on it, and I couldn't get it out of my head. I kept asking, "If God's grace to us is to be strengthened with power in the Spirit according to the riches of His glory, the goal being Christ dwelling in our hearts through faith, why is it that faith often takes on such a fickle and frail countenance?"

I often feel like I'm the only one who struggles with such debilitating weaknesses. Some days, I feel like my sins drain all the strength from me, and I think I'm never going to see the day when I sin no more. Other days, I don't care how much they eat away at me; I almost feel too numb to care. The isolating nature of sin can be horrendous, causing us to believe the lies that we've already been redeemed from, making us feel like we're the only ones who are fighting the good fight of faith with such weakness.

On the surface, Paul's prayer bothers me. It makes me feel like a big fat loser. It bothered me for a while this summer, and I couldn't get it out of my head. It wasn't until I really stepped back and thought about what faith looked like that I felt any comfort. I thought about some of the biblical characters I relate to: Moses, who wussed out and made excuses; David, who sinned and tried to cover it up; Jonah, who ran from God, then was bitter; and Peter, who denied Jesus. Why do I relate to them? They screwed up. Big time. All of them were world-class choke artists, losers whose sin has been plastered across redemptive history for all believers to see and identify with. Yet, all were known for their faith, for the ways that God used their feeble lives to work His Kingdom purposes.

What is it like, then, to have Christ dwell in our hearts through faith? It is to have sin highlighted by the light of Christ's love, to struggle with our weakness, and to repent continually. God's power is felt most sweetly when He picks us up from the pits of our despair, when we feel as the bruised reed does, and are comforted with the knowledge that Christ will not break us. It is felt most powerfully when we cry out in need, knowing that we have been emptied of ourselves, desiring only to have Christ dwell in our hearts, filling us with His love. And how do we cry out? In faith.

posted by Bolo | 10:34 PM
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