Tuesday, June 1, 2010

To Believe

A few years ago we had a missionary to Peru come tell us about the work she did. This was a person who grew up in the community in which we lived and she was back giving an update to all the churches which supported her work. When she finished speaking she asked if anyone in the congregation had any questions. Someone asked: "Have you ever witnessed a healing?" She said she had. She shared a story of how she was about to leave the country. Just before it was time for her to board the plane a woman came up to her. She had a small child with her who was deformed from birth. This child had one deformed arm and the feet were not developed. This mother wanted the missionary to pray for her child. She wanted prayer for the child's healing. The missionary began to pray and by the time she had finished, the child was completely normal. She said it was "so neat" to see the little hand form from a new arm. Little toes formed from a foot that had no toes. The woman was beside herself with joy exclaiming: "I knew it! I knew He would do it if you prayed!"

And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit; And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not. He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me. And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming. And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child. And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us. Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him. And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead. But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose. (Mark 9:17-27)

It is my belief this child the missionary prayed for was healed because of the faith the mother had. Perhaps it was the faith of the missionary. I am sure she prayed with faith too. God honors your faith. In the passage above, the father of this child was struggling with doubt. I know I can identify with him. We have something that just weighs us down and before long we don't feel as if our prayers go through the ceiling. We have allowed ourselves to become discouraged. Notice I said "we have allowed"...it is a choice. Sometimes we tend to limit God don't we? Touch this part of my life and don't touch that. We struggle with surrender on certain issues and it costs us. It costs us much more than we gain when we don't take God at His word. You will never know true freedom as a Christian until you give those things which keep you bound to Christ. That's a fact! I didn't say you wouldn't be a Christian. I am just saying you will struggle much more with peace and joy.

When I talk to someone about the Bible being the Word of God, I get some pretty nasty looks. You see, I am someone who is termed a "literalist." I believe the Bible literally. From the creation of the world to where Moses saw the sea parted...I believe. From where Gideon took a small army and defeated the Midianites to where David killed Goliath...I believe. From the point Noah entered the ark to where Elijah called the fire down from Heaven...I believe. From where Jesus raised Lazarus to where He died on a Roman cross for my sins...I believe. I don't need to go on do I? Now I know there is some symbolism in the prophetic messages in the Bible but when you read accounts of the men and women of God...you can take that to the bank! This actually happened.

This post has one true message:  Believe God for He is faithful and give yourself to Him. Whether it be in prayer for healing or help in everyday life...God is able. The more of yourself you give to Him the more you will free Him to do wonderful things for you. He does do some pretty wonderful things too. I believe that.

Father God, I thank you for all you have done for me. I praise you because you are who you are and you do what you said you would do. You are faithful Lord. When I struggle with things in my life: "Help thou mine unbelief." Grant me that which I need to make sound decisions and not doubt in my heart. I continue to pray for Debbie who needs your touch. I lift up those who read Lord. I ask you would help them with any trace of doubt they may have. You are a reliable God and only you are able. May your blessings abound on them Lord. Bless them and keep them I pray. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

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