Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Asking and Believing

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.  But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.  That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.  –James 1:5-8 

From the time I was a small boy on through my twenties, I could ride just about any ride found at amusement parks.  Roller coasters, tilt-a-whirls, Ferris wheels, or the scrambler, I could ride them all with little to no ill effects.  All that changed, however, as I approached the age of thirty.  Somewhere along the line those rides I had dared all the years began to have a most unpleasant affect on me.  I started getting nauseated and I knew my days of amusement park rides were over.  Eventually I got to the place where I could barely look at them without feeling queasy.  Truly it was the end of an era.   

Life can be like those amusement park rides in that we sometimes get shaken, spun around in circles, and flipped upside down.  We begin to wonder if it’s ever going to stop.  We walk away from painful experiences feeling that there is no way we can even face those problems and challenges again.  When life leaves us feeling queasy and defeated, we can find renewed hope and strength in Jesus Christ.  He will empower us to stand up and face whatever trials and crises come our way, and we will not simply survive them, but we will overcome them through faith in the Lord.    

Being able to stand firm and live in victory is available to all who will by faith trust the Lord and ask for His help and strength.  Failure to ask, or asking and then doubting, makes us like that wave tossed about on the sea; unstable and double-minded.  Ask God in firm and unquestioning faith and we can expect great results.  However, if we doubt and fail to take Christ at His word, then let’s not be surprised if we remain where we are; unstable, doubting, unfulfilled, and tossed around like the tilt-a-whirl.
Jesus Christ specializes in the impossible, and bringing us through the trials of life is what He does best.  Whatever you lack today; wisdom, faith, peace, joy, or spiritual strength, ask the Lord to bring these attributes into your life, and then claim the promise of Christ that when we ask we will receive (Matthew 7:7).  Don’t settle for instability and spiritual defeat.  Move instead toward vibrant and victorious faith.

Victory is ours in Jesus Christ.

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