Believing Without Seeing

When Jesus left, He said to Thomas, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Those who have not seen are the people of faith.

The disciples died for Jesus Christ.  They died on crosses.  And I know they felt some fear, because everybody fears death to a certain point.

But they cheated!  I’m sorry, they did!   Continue reading

Clay to be Molded, Part 2

The health, wealth, and prosperity Gospel might be a little bit mixed up.  It puts a lot of emphasis on the Bible’s promise that God will prosper you.  Unfortunately, people take that to mean that if they get saved, then Bam!  They become prosperous.

But that’s not going to work.  Just because you accept Jesus, that doesn’t mean you’re instantly transformed. So when the newly converted don’t become prosperous, they lose hope in God.  “Well, obviously there’s no God.  See, I’m not prosperous. They said I was going to be wealthy and prosperous, and my life’s still just as bad as it’s always been.”

There’s more to the lifestyle of Jesus than taking that first step.  Yes, you start by loving Jesus.  Yes, you embrace what He stands for.  You accept His sacrifice for you. But the time still comes when you have to figure out who you want to be, in Christ.  You have to decide who you want to be, in Christ. Continue reading

Clay to be Molded, Part I

People find themselves wondering why God hasn’t changed them. They have asked God for the things they want, but they still don’t have them. Or they have a picture of what the life of a believer should be like, but they aren’t there yet. They might be asking, “Why hasn’t God done something huge in my life? Why doesn’t God speak to me?”

I think the time comes in every believer’s life where we have to say, “God, I’m open to it.”

When you say, “God, I’m ready for a change,” I think God says, “Finally! Finally you’re ready.” But you have to truly give yourself up to Him.  Continue reading

Blessed Are Those Who Mourn

I recently heard a story about a man who lost his family in a flash flood. All his children were killed, and his wife as well. He was the only one to survive. With everything taken from him at once, he said he was surprised by the grace he received. He said that without that grace, he would not have found the will to live.

I’ve never experienced loss like that. It must be devastating. I pray for protection over my family every day, because I don’t want to ever go through anything like that. I’m not sure how I would respond if that happened to me. Would I still believe that there’s a God? Continue reading

The Secret Is Love

Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed. John 20:29

Jesus knew how hard it would be for us to believe without seeing. It’s as if he told us, “I know it’s going to be hard to do. I know it is. I know this is going to be really, really difficult. But when your soul feels real love, the love I’ve showed you, you’re going to be okay. You won’t miss it that you didn’t see Me, or walk around Palestine with me. It won’t matter that you didn’t see the miracles with your own eyes. You won’t miss it at all, because your soul will crave My love. And when you accomplish just a little part of loving others the way I love you, it’ll feel so good to your soul that faith will seem easy. You’re going to believe in Me.”

And I think that that’s what happens when you get together with other people and help build His kingdom. Continue reading

Doubt and Faith Part 5

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Recently I’ve been writing about doubt. In Part 1, I wrote about our all-too-human ability to create doubt. In Part 2, I wrote about how doubt is a normal part of the lives of the faithful, especially when we’re facing failure. In Part 3, I reflected on how even our Biblical ancestors doubted, even though they were eye witnesses to God’s miracles, signs, and wonders. And in Part 4, I wrote about how the wonder of Creation can alleviate doubt and clearly remind us of God’s sovereignty.

There is still another kind of doubt. Sometimes we doubt God’s purpose. Maybe we don’t doubt His existence or His sovereignty. But we still doubt that He knows what He’s doing! Continue reading

Doubt and Faith Part 4

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The most common cause of doubt is frustrated expectations.  People doubt God because things don’t go the way they planned, or the way they wanted them to be.  “If God loves me and knows my heart,” they reason, “He would give me what I need, or what I long for.”

Probably a lot of these people don’t do that with their own children.  I don’t do that with my son.  My son wants certain things that I won’t give him, because I know what will happen if I do.  At the time, though, he just wants what he wants.  He doesn’t know I’m protecting him from a bad outcome.  So he gets mad at me, right?

Still, my son doesn’t doubt that I’m his dad, because he can see me.  Continue reading