When Will Christians Start Believing God?

 We believe in God.
That’s nice.
But it ain’t the whole sha-bang.
The apostle James says,
“Big deal. You believe in God. So what? So do the demons.” (my paraphrase)
James is essentially challenging us not just to believe IN God
but to believe God.
I believe in God but there are times when I really have to stretch to believe Him.
Like, when He says that the meek will inherit the earth, it’s like someone telling me they just saw Bigfoot.
Or, when He tells me not to worry about tomorrow, what I’ll eat or drink or wear, it’s like someone is describing alien bodies at Roswell.
These words of His require me to exercise faith because they make no sense to my mind
and I’m surrounded by people telling me that meekness is the way of the weak
and convincing me that worrying about tomorrow is logical, practical, and necessary.
But, recently, God used the world to illustrate for me the proof of another of His truths I find challenging:
the value of perseverance.
I hate perseverance and God’s love of it just annoys me.
Perseverance is boring and tastes like dust, gravel, and sweat. Perseverance smells like wet wool. It’s the color of fog in the morning. It feels like sandpaper and chalk.
There’s no cool way to market perseverance because it’s just a tough sell.
If perseverance showed up for a brand marketing meeting, the marketing team members would shake their heads, stare at the table, and suggest he alter himself into something consumers will actually buy like instant gratification and fleeting joy.
But, not God. Nope. God puts His big old arm around perseverance and says, “You are one of my favorite character traits. Human beings should all pursue you, man. You are what it takes.”
And God puts these words into His faith in boring, old perseverance:
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. ” James 1:2-4
“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge;  and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness;  and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.” 2 Peter 1:5-7
Still, I resist
you know, because I’m stupid.
But on May 2nd, Rhode Island became the tenth state to allow gay marriage. On the radio the next day, I heard an announcer who vehemently opposes gay marriage credit one thing with its approval:
the perseverance of gay rights activists.
“They just kept coming,” he said. “Most of us believe it’s immoral and wrong but the other side just wouldn’t give up, they persevered, they never went away, they just wore us down by refusing to give up.”
I almost pulled over to the side of the road in awe of the power of perseverance.
And I was humbled that the world schooled me in the truth my Father has been inviting me to embrace.
When, I wonder, will Christians start believing God?
I know when I did.  On May 3rd.


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3 Comments

    The Conversation

  1. Anonymous says:

    That radio personality was right on target. Perserverance took prayer out of schools, won Roe VS Wade, took the banner out of the school in Cranston, the Ten Commandments out of the courthouse, etc. etc. I know by experience that we Christians find our perserverance limited by the clock–into church at 11:00; out by 12:00. Any longer than that and we can’t focus. We read that Christ prayed until He shed drops of blood. We don’t even build up a sweat. Two minutes before we fall asleep and we’ve said all we want to say to a Holy God. If the strength of our faith were to be measured by our perservance and we would be found sadly lacking. Once again you’ve touched on a timely topic and given me something to look at in myself. You go, Girl. MOMMA

  2. Tina Seward says:

    Maybe I fall into that category as well. Delaware has now approved gay marriage. I feel like we are slowly being ground down until we can no longer do any good. And I despair when I hear of news such as another state approving gay marriage.

  3. Wow. Yes. Piercing my heart, girlfriend.

    When will I value what God values? Believe that He’s right when He says something is valuable?

    Absolutely delightful word pictures — perseverance showing up to a marketing meeting!!! You put a smile on my face. So very much looking forward to meeting you, spending time with you — even if we have to wait until the afterlife to do it. You light up my life.