Seeing can be harder than believing

"Seeing is believing."  This is a saying that has been around for a long time.  But what does it really mean?  Are we to call into question anything that we cannot or have not truly experienced?  If that is the case, our belief systems are confined to the small spaces that contain our personal world.  In other words, we wouldn't believe much because there is so much we have not seen.

 The philosopher Kierkegaard is commonly credited with the phrase "leap of faith," which can be defined as jumping from one quality of belief into another, even if there is not substantial evidence for doing so.  For instance, Christians are often accused of talking leaps of faith to believe in Christ, one whom they have not physically seen and who lived a life that transcended metaphysical possibilities culminating in a bodily resurrection from the grave.  Yet if we are going to throw this accusation against Christians then can't we say the same of those who hold to science or the power of the self as having the meaning of life?  There is so much out there (and within us) that we don't understand and have not seen that it's just as much of a leap to place our trust in these kinds of things as it is to place our faith in Christ.

But sometimes seeing with our own eyes can be harder to accept than believing in something purely by faith.

Imbedded within the Christian faith is the reality that God does indeed answer prayers and He also shows Himself faithful in ways that often blow our minds.  A unexpected check arrives in the mail for a financially desperate family.  Illness disappears when all hope seems lost.  A situation that once seemed impossible is suddenly resolved.  Relationships are healed that were all but abandoned as irreconcilable.  We believe that God can do all of these things, but there are times when our hope exceeds what we truly believe that He can do.

And then God shows Himself faithful and we almost can't believe our eyes.

You may dream of doing great things for God and trust that He will open the right doors of opportunity, yet when He does so you struggle to believe that this could actually be happening.  Are we surprised or caught off guard when He does answer our prayers?  But we rationalize with ourselves, believing that we need more "signs" from God or that we may be seeing only what we want to see and that God really isn't pointing us in a direction.  There seems to be such a fine line between distinguishing what we want to do and what God wills for our lives.  How are we to know the difference?

We pray.  Seek God's face and look for what He is doing in our lives, not what other people are trying to project into them.  When God beings to move it can be hard for us to believe because, truth be told, we weren't sure that He would actually do it.  Having others around to give you godly counsel is critical in this process, but nothing can replace discerning what God Himself is doing.  And this is not easy.  Believing that God will move is the first step.  Having the faith and courage to follow when He does takes it to a whole other level.
 

No comments:

Open hands and letting go

Several weeks ago I ran across an article that described the kind of person that I am to the letter. The writer described a group of people...