What does it mean to have faith? God values faith in ways we least expect.
I never used to be afraid.
I was all faith.
Or so I thought.
I had enough faith for everyone around me and seconds to go around too.
Everything would always work out fine because I was with Jesus. And Jesus was with me.
I loved people. Prayed, studied my Bible, and recycled regularly.
But, as time passed by and the number of things that went wrong started adding up, I unconsciously started keeping a tally.
I would’ve never admitted that I was keeping such a list. Not even to myself, much less God.
But, I did.
Deep in my heart, where I did not dare to go, I had a running list of questions about where God was leading me. And why it was taking so long.
Of course, I knew that He is all good, all knowing, and all powerful. So, I didn’t allow myself to doubt God’s plan for me.
Or so I thought.
I masked my insecurities with God by doubting myself.
What I feared most was being forgotten. I was afraid to live an insignificant life.
After writing pages and pages of unanswerable dilemmas, God gently and lovingly brought two pictures to my mind.
* In the beginning, there was nothing.
It was in nothing, the Holy Spirit hovered, where God created something.
* Mary’s empty womb. How can this be? she asked.
It was in nothing, the Holy Spirit hovered again, where Jesus became flesh.
The place inside me where faith was near death became alive.
Nothingness. That’s me!
I had never been so happy to discover I had become the perfect place for Jesus to rest in.
That song I sang as a gullible teenager long ago suddenly took on a completely different meaning —
Lord prepare me, to be a sanctuary,
pure and holy, tried and true
and with thanksgiving,
I’ll be a living, sanctuary, oh for you.
It was as if a bolt of lightning struck my heart and resuscitated my story.
It irrevocably changed my direction. I decided to stop setting my sights on where I was going or what I would end up doing in the future.
I set my sights on who I was walking with — Jesus.
I surrendered my ideas of what life ought to look like, so I could have the courage to make choices facing me today.
In the everyday. That is where I will find Him.
In the everyday. This is where He would lead me.
I realized the best life — the most significant life I can live — is the one I grow in my faith.
In the Old Testament, the patriarchs of faith recognized God’s blessings by taking possession of a physical Promised Land. God’s presence was symbolized by physical blessings of harvest and goods.
This all changed after Jesus arrived in the New Testament. The author of Hebrews tells God prepared a spiritual blessing — something better.
“And all these [patriarches of faith listed earlier],
having gained approval through their faith,
did not receive what was promised,
because God had provided something better for us…
fixing our eyes on Jesus,
the author and perfecter of faith”
Our something better isn’t a plan. Our something better is a Person.
Our spiritual Promised Land is life with Jesus.
Next Time You Think
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the areas in life that appear dark and formless — or empty and barren — remember Jesus is faithful —
to create something beautiful in you.
bring life to others through you.
to carry you to safety.
to make a way you cannot see.
to put you back together again.
to return laughter where you taste sorrow.
to give you courage to start over (again and again).
to use every loss and every triumph for His glory.
Next time you think nothing is happening in your life — or you find yourself asking “How can this be?” — remember things aren’t as they appear.
Jesus sees you.
And He will never forget why He put you here.
How is God encouraging you in your faith?
Pull up a chair. Click to share a comment.
* Who can you share today’s encouragement with?
For more words of encouragement and soul rest, order a copy of my book Finding Spiritual Whitespace.
Beloved Brews Spotlights
Every week, I’ll spotlight a tagged #SpiritualWhitespace image from Instagram (like the beautiful one to the right) or blogger in our Beloved Brews Community. To be considered as a spotlight blogger, please kindly be sure to use the Beloved Brew badge or link back to Faith Barista in your post. Kindreds, I can’t wait to see your photos & read the stories you live. Thank you for sharing your voice.
Trudy, from Freed to Fly, shares:
“I just couldn’t get myself to post last week as I feel so blocked and confused. Yet it feels like God tells me to write anyway. Every single incident in our lives is written there, and He feels our hurt as He writes our stories.
As I look out my office window, I see and hear the birds at the feeders and in a nest close to my window. And God quietly whispers, ‘I take care of these birds. Not one of them is forgotten. Neither will I forget you, My child. I will never leave you or forsake you.'”
Beloved Brews Link Up
Whole-hearted Writing. You & Jesus.
Welcome to our Beloved Brews weekly link-up! Pour out a little love with your words every Thursday (publish any day. link-up on Thursdays). Simply write a blog post about what God’s sharing with your heart this week and then share it here. Don’t have a blog? Just share a comment. Visit thebonniegray.com to read the comments & share your voice too.
Next week’s 7/16 writing prompt: (what is God sharing with your heart?)
Please use the Beloved Brews button in your blog post so we’ll know you’re in our community & others can join (use this html code here). When you link up your post, read & leave an encouraging comment on the post linked up just before yours. Thanks, kindreds!
Share photos that touch your heart with God’s beauty and rest using #spiritualwhitespace on Instagram. It’ll be fun to see your pics!
May the writing prompt bring you to a quiet place in your soul as you share your voice. Click here for details.