Friday, November 19, 2010

Pride and Unbelief

This month finds me hanging out in the Old Testament book of Second Kings.  Pride in the lives of the people of God is evidenced over and over.  Forgetting one's past and who God is and what he has done begins the downward trek to the illusion of self-sufficiency; the attitude that my way is better.
In the case of the people of the northern kingdom the end result was to be removed from the Presence of God.  I cannot image anything worse!!

Good thing I'm not prideful!  Yeah - Right!!

What is it when....
I try to shoulder my burdens myself?
I get angry at those companies, etc. that are not cooperating with me?
I try to be superwoman?

When I was a very young girl I had this one fantasy that most nights I used to put myself to sleep.  I had super powers and I would rescue people.  Then everyone would love me.  I was valued in those fantasies.

Now I know that I am valued for myself by the One Who created me.  In Zephaniah I read that "He rejoices over me with singing!"
It is when I forget how valued I am and what He has done and is able to do that I head down that downward path.

It can get pretty ugly and very fast!  You see, we become like what we follow, what we worship.
I want my eyes to be fixed on Him, "the author and perfector of my faith!" 
I want others to meet Him when they meet me. 
This takes humility.  (No wonder I wander so easily!)
One place that humility is seen is in the acceptance of others just as they are.  That is what Jesus does.  He accepts us just as we are.
However, He doesn't intend to leave us the way He found us and He is able to do something about it!  Instead of trying to "fix" each other what we can do is bring one another to Him.  Prayer does just that!
Why would I neglect to bring others to Him?  Do I think that I can help in any better way?  Could it be unbelief?

Yesterday David Jeremiah's devotional addressed unbelief.  When Jesus walked this earth He did many miraculous things.  Not many in His hometown.  Scripture says that "He did not do many works there because of their unbelief."
One day a father brought his son to Jesus for healing.  The boy was demon-possessed.  The father said, "But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us!"  Jesus said to him, "'If You can!'  All things are possible to him who believes."
The father's response?  "I do believe; help my unbelief."

In response to this reading I echoed the father's response.  "Oh, Papa, I do believe; help my unbelief!"
In my last posting I listed a few blessings that I was grateful for.  My husband's healing was not on the list.  Oh I am sure that it is evident that I am grateful for how far Ray has come, however, it was revealed to me that I had been buying into the limits that the medical community had set on his future healing.
No more!

I have let go of the limits that I had set on what God will do.  Of course, He CAN do all things, but I think I just wasn't expecting Him to do that much more. 

In the thirteenth chapter of Second Kings we find the account of Joash the king of Israel coming to Elisha the prophet.  The prophet was dieing and the king was distaught.  Elisha told him to look to the future and believe what God will do.  As a demonstration of faith the king was told to strike the ground with his arrows.  He struck three times and no more.
Elisha told him that he should have struck more times.  It would have been a sign of confidence.
Joash limited his future by his unbelief.

If I had arrows in my hand right now I would strike the ground until my arm could no longer lift my hand!

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