Tag Archives: belief

Money Matters

Guess what!?! Another blog about money.

I can understand why God said what He said about serving two masters–God and money. They really do compete with each other.

Allow me to explain. I’m currently in the fundraising stage for my trip to the Dominican Republic. I’ve received one check thus far. Although I am thankful for that, I also realize I’ve got a long way to go.

I used to live in Nebraska. Now I live in Tennessee. Many of my support letters were sent to folks in Nebraska. I understand the United States Postal Service takes awhile. Things take a week to get where they’re going rather than a few days. So I understand there is a delay due to the mail and the distance. I’m trying to roll with that.

My roommate, who is also going on this trip, has lived in Tennessee all her life. Just last week, she went to her old church and her brothers’ church to fundraise. She came home with about $700. I am thrilled for her that her fundraising trip went well! However, meanwhile, I am battling thoughts of comparison. I keep thinking to myself, “I wish I could go back to the church I went to as a kid and ask for money. I bet I’d get a lot. And all in one day. I wouldn’t have to wait for letters to come in either.”

One of my greatest mental battles is comparison. If I’m not careful, I constantly compare myself to others. I size them up. Put them down. Lift them up. Over and over and over again. Though that’s a normal thing to do for most people, it is not a biblical thing to do.

In the Bible, God says that we need to compare ourselves to His standard and not compare ourselves to other people. So I should not compare my fundraising results with those of my roommate. But wow! I am oh-s0-tempted to do that all the time. I’m am currently enduring a mental barrage from Satan with that particular issue.

I am also enduring a mental attack of fear and worry. Fear that I won’t receive the money I need to go. Fear that I’ll miss fundraising deadlines. Fear that I didn’t put enough effort in to my fundraising. 

God says that perfect love casts out fear. He also says that worrying does not add even an hour to my life, so I don’t need to worry. Yet that is what I’m dealing with now. Last night, for example, I was attacked by the enemy in that area. My sleep was interrupted and delayed because of thoughts of worry.

James chapter 1 says that we need to be doers of the Word and not just hearers. So though I know I’m not supposed to worry and fear, that’s not enough. I also need to stop doing those things. It’s not enough to just realize that fear and worry are bad. I, instead, need to be a person of faith and peace.

Last week, I heard a sermon on unbelief. That’s a big issue under hot contention within my mind right now. 

Unbelief is thinking I won’t receive all the funds. Unbelief is worrying. Unbelief is spending my days in fear.

Belief is knowing that God will provide. Belief is living full of faith. Belief is enjoying days and nights in peace.

Unbelief is a passive destruction of faith.

Belief is an active war for faith. 

It’s annoying how alluring and easy unbelief is. It’s so easy to hide in a dark corner of our mind in an effort of self preservation. We think it’s not harmful to be full of doubt and be surprised when something works out for us. That right there is deceptive thinking.

Here’s the truth. The God that created the world out of nothing–FROM NOTHING–lives inside of me. The Holy Spirit was present when the world was created. And now the Holy Spirit is inside of me. It’s at work inside of me. The same God that raised Jesus from the dead…that Holy Spirit is inside of me. And, it’s not just a portion of the Holy Spirit. God is infinite. Infinity cannot be reduced. The infinite God and His power lives inside of me.

And yet, I have the worried fear to doubt Him and His ability?!? Does that even make sense? It does not. Yet it seems safer to doubt Him.

If God can create the world out of nothing (and He can; He did), then He can provide me $1400. He can spur His people to send me a check. He can protect me. He can give me sleep-filled, peaceful nights. 

It is not safe to live in unbelief. God disciplines people who live in unbelief. God rewards people who believe. Although I’m glad God disciplines His children, I don’t want to enter into a time of discipline because of my unbelief.

So here I am writing this blog. As an active measure of faith. To say, “Yes, God. I believe you will provide. Help my unbelief.”

Time Doesn’t Diffuse Promises

I don’t think this blog will be as well put together as most of my other blogs. It usually takes me anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to edit, proofread, delete, add, change, think, redo, etc., etc. my blogs.

However, this time, I just need to release my thoughts and writerize (the writing form of verbalize) what’s going on in my head.

So let’s get to it…

God’s promises don’t change. God isn’t like people. Humans promise things and often fail to deliver. “I promise you, I’ll love you forever.” Years later, a tragic divorce.

“There’s no way I’ll miss your game, son.” Caught up in the busyness of his day, a father fails to show up to his young son’s soccer game.

“Your secret’s safe with me. Don’t worry. I won’t tell anyone.” The next day, gossip encircles a young female as she realizes her trusted friend betrayed her confidence.

God doesn’t do that. When He says He’ll do something, He will do something.

I am trying to pound this point into my head. I cannot compare God to man. I cannot gauge my trust level of God based on my human experiences.

God promised me a job on the MTSU campus. He confirmed it through His Word, the Bible. He’s confirmed it in the Spirit. He’s affirmed and confirmed it through other people in my life. He speaks to me specifically about the job when I go to pray on campus.

Yet, I still find myself doubting what He said. I still feel me slipping into times of pensive consideration of, “Well, what if He doesn’t? What if I don’t get a job there? What if I’m not hearing Him? What if I’m left disappointed?”

God isn’t an “if” God. God is a “truth” God.

The truth is that God doesn’t lie. The truth is that God doesn’t deny Himself. The truth is that time doesn’t diffuse God’s promises. Waiting doesn’t weaken the promises of God. In the words of Joyce Meyer, we want “microwave miracles” from God. We want it zapped to us right now.

The situation I’m in requires a crock pot miracle. It requires a slow brew of basting, tenderizing, flavorizing, slow-cooked goodness of perfect maturity.

A gap in time between promise and promise fulfilled doesn’t negate the promise. God spoke to me about this job a long time ago. His promise of a job is still true, though I still see no evidence of a job there. Though I have not been called for an interview. Though I’m still without job.

Here are a few segments of passages from the Bible that have really challenged me and convicted me on this particular subject:

Excerpts from Psalm 31:

In you, O LORD, I have taken refuge;
let me never be put to shame;
deliver me in your righteousness.

Turn your ear to me,
come quickly to my rescue;
be my rock of refuge,
a strong fortress to save me.

Since you are my rock and my fortress,
for the sake of your name lead and guide me.

I will be glad and rejoice in your love,
for you saw my affliction
and knew the anguish of my soul.

My times are in your hands….

Let your face shine on your servant;
save me in your unfailing love.

Let me not be put to shame, O LORD,
for I have cried out to you….

How great is your goodness,
which you have stored up for those who fear you,
which you bestow in the sight of men
on those who take refuge in you.

Love the LORD, all his saints!
The LORD preserves the faithful

Be strong and take heart,
all you who hope in the LORD.

Psalm 34:

I sought the LORD, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.

Those who look to him are radiant;
their faces are never covered with shame.

The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,
and he delivers them.

Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.

Fear the LORD, you his saints,
for those who fear him lack nothing.

The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous
and his ears are attentive to their cry;

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

A righteous man may have many troubles,
but the LORD delivers him from them all;
he protects all his bones,
not one of them will be broken.

The LORD redeems his servants;
no one will be condemned who takes refuge in him.

Romans 4:

What does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”

Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed….

Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.” The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.

Scripture regarding my unbelief:

1 John 1:9-10:

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

The way I see it, the only way that God is a liar and not telling the truth, is if I do not confess my sins. If I don’t continually confess my unbelief and doubt in this situation, then God is a liar.

Regarding the other passages, you’ll notice that I will not be ashamed, because His Word says so. I am looking to Him and pursuing the leading He’s given me. I will not be disappointed.

The only failure in all of this is unbelief. If I waver in faith, this is not credited to me as righteousness.

There is no punishment for believing God. But there is punishment for unbelief. The Word proves that I will not be disappointed. I will not be shamed. God is not a liar, so what He told me is true. He will deliver. He is my refuge.

In some twisted way, it seems more normal to be doubtful. Doubt defines the culture around me. Doubt feels safer. But, I am counter-culture. I am a woman of faith. I have seen the evidence and fulfillment of God’s promises in my life and in the life of others.

So, really, all things considered, believing is actually the safe thing here. Unbelief brings disappointment and discipline. Wavering brings spinning in a downward spiral of lost progress. Doubt brings in deception.

Belief brings truth. Belief brings fulfillment. Belief leads to promises fulfilled.