How do I please God? Hebrews 11:6 declares “Without faith it is impossible to please him….”
Hebrews 11:1 defines faith, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” So, faith is not proof, but the evidence of things not seen, as yet. If I am going to live by faith, (and please God), the Lord will take me to a place where every Believer must walk. This passage is called “the trial of faith”: 1 Peter 1:7 expounds “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” God declares the trial of our faith to be a precious thing in His eyes. Why? – because it brings us into closer relationship with Him as we learn to trust Him more. It also develops the fruit of patience in our lives: James 1:3 “Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience.”
Consider the following from 2 Corinthians 4:6-10 “For God…..has shined in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed. Persecuted, but not forsaken, cast down, but not destroyed. Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus may be made manifest in our body.”
Paul boldly declared and lived these truths. He proved and demonstrated, by the faith of Jesus Christ, living and active in his being, that trouble is not in trouble, but is in one’s attitude to trouble. How else could he and Silas, in a prison cell with bleeding backs from beatings, sing praises to God at midnight. The treasure within them, the life of Christ, refused to be downcast, perplexed, distressed or destroyed by their circumstances. They praised God IN their situation, not FOR it.
Maybe some of us will never be in such dire straits imprisoned and whipped, but we all have adverse circumstances or relationships to deal with along life’s journey that we would prefer to be without. Here is where we prove God, “…that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body,” 2 Corinthians 4:10 In the midst of my trials I must choose to walk as a son of God, an ambassador for Jesus Christ – keeping a thankful heart that God is in control, never moving from His position of unconditional love for me, always trusting that he will never forsake me, in spite of my deceiving feelings. I must not allow my emotions to dictate to me and judge God as unrighteous. God’s Word defines Him and is my warrant for right believing.
If I can sing in trouble and distress, as Paul and Silas did, it is far more glorifying to God than being delivered OUT of something. For example: Daniel in the Lion’s den – the Lord shut the mouths of the lions. The three Hebrew children: Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego (Daniel 3), were delivered from the flames IN the fiery furnace. God protected them in the great persecution they suffered and brought them through. So then, God has made a way through the life of His Son, for me to be an overcomer and live in victorious faith wherever, and whatever, befalls me.
Let us remind ourselves:
TROUBLE IS NOT IN TROUBLE, BUT IN OUR ATTITUDE TO TROUBLE
Right believing produces right living, just as wrong believing produces negatives in my life. Is it time to exchange some of the lies I have been believing for the truths of what God has said and declared? Whatever befalls me, I can find a place, by faith, to overcome. It is time to stand up and walk as a son of God, not an orphan. We have an inheritance in Christ that is ours for the claiming!
Romans 8:35,37, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” verses 38-39 “For I am persuaded that……..nothing shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Have I settled this? Can I say, like Paul did, that I am fully persuaded? The Lord worked with Abraham to bring him to the place where Paul wrote of him, “He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith giving glory to God, and being FULLY PERSUADED that what God had promised, he was able to perform.” Romans 4:20-21.
Unbelief will give you “a fit of the staggers.” If you are fully persuaded of “Christ in you, the hope of glory”, arise, son of God, take the shield of faith and walk in your inheritance in Christ.