What Real Faith Looks Like


What Real Faith Looks Like

Carmen at Life Blessons

I’ve never had to worry about anyone plotting my death. The closest I’ve ever
come is feeling like I don’t fit in or folks throwing rude words at my feet or
turning away from me in a time of need. I’ve felt alone and forgotten and hurt
and betrayed. But worried for my very life, that my next breath may be my
last?

No, death is not something I find myself praying about very
much.

In the Psalms, though, we see that that was a real concern for
quite a few of the writers—they really did have to worry about losing their
lives.

I was reading Psalm 71, where the writer is facing this very
danger: “…my enemies are whispering against me. They are plotting together to
kill me.” (verse 10)

He prays and begs and pleads for God to rescue him
from the ruin that otherwise awaits. “O God, don’t stay away. My God, please
hurry to help me.” (verse 12)

And then he says something that catches my
eye, that captures my heart: “But I will keep on hoping for you to help me; I
will praise you more and more. I will tell everyone about your righteousness.
All day long I will proclaim your saving power, for I am overwhelmed by how much
you have done for me. I will praise your mighty deeds, O Sovereign LORD. I will
tell everyone that you alone are just and good.” (verses 14-16)

While he
waits for the Lord to act and rescue him, he contends that he will not only
continue praising Him, but he will praise Him even more than he ever has. His
worship will grow even in these times of suffering.

When the hard times
come, it’s not that my prayers and praise ever stop. Like Job, I’m well aware
that, “Should we accept only good things from the hand of God and never anything
bad?” (Job 2:10)

I’m ready to accept what God is allowing and even praise
him in the midst, but am I willing to praise him more than I ever have
before?

That is faith.

“What is faith?” Hebrews 11 asks. “It is
the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the
evidence of things we cannot yet see.”

That definition becomes
apparent—becomes lived out—later in the same psalm when the writer looks with
expectation to the future, one that he trusts will not end in ruin like his
enemies plan, but with God’s rescue: “You have allowed me to suffer much
hardship, but you will restore me to life again and lift me up from the depths
of the earth. You will restore me to even greater honor and comfort me once
again.” (verses 20-21)

His praises comes from great expectations of what
God is going to do. He looks on his own calamities not with pity but with
purpose, knowing that they aren’t for naught, that God will redeem
them.

Though his circumstances may say otherwise—that he is alone and
suffering and without rescue, the psalmist chooses to rest on God’s promises and
character and trust that things will end up very differently for
him.

That is faith.

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