A Planting of Faith Seeds for the/ Glory of the LORD
Faith, Trust, Jesus, and Us…
“Some people brought to him a paralyzed man on a mat. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “Be encouraged, my child! Your sins are forgiven…” …Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!” And the man jumped up and went home!” (Matthew 9:2, 6–7, NLT)
Undaunted by their inability to present their friend to Jesus so he could be healed 4 men climbed on a roof removed enough roofing material then lowered him in front of Jesus where he was healed. I am sure you’ve heard and/or read the story before and because there are a number of parts of it that have a familiar ring to you I am pretty sure you’ve experienced the story as well. After all who among us has not been paralyzed by something that has frightened us at some point in our lives. Fear whether it is real or imagined is one of the most powerful forces confronting us on a daily basis.
The way Jesus reacted to the paralyzed man isn’t the way one would expect him to react. “Be encouraged your sins are forgiven,” are not the words I would have chosen yet Jesus in his infinite wisdom looked deeper not only into that man but us as well than any of us could reassured him and us that God was taking care of him and us as well.
In my own struggles with fear Jesus’ promise of the Holy Spirit provides me with the encouragement and strength to step out in trust that whatever the outcome may be I will find peace. “But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:26–27, NLT)
In the church I attend is an elderly lady I’ve known all my life who is paralyzed by the fear of surgery in spite of her faith that Jesus would be with her throughout the entire experience. Whenever I see her I always reflect on my own surgical experiences and I can see that being afraid of something does not come necessarily from a loss of faith but from fear’s ability to overpower trust. While on the surface it may seem that faith and trust are interchangeable in reality they are not interchangeable.
While I am not an expert on anyone else’s life I am an expert on my own life and I have come to some conclusions about faith and trust you may or may not agree with me. Trust itself can be very scary. Trust is faith in action. Trust is putting faith to the test. Trust is stepping into the unknown based on past experiences where faith has proven itself to be dependable. Faith is the accumulation of experiences where Jesus has proven to be faithful. Faith and trust must be based not on a specific outcome but instead must be based on our relationship with God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.
Believe it! Experience it!
Grace and PEACE!
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And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from His glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 NLT)
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“Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.”