By Kathi Pelton
“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1
When God speaks a promise to me, through His still small voice, through a prophetic word or through His written Word, I access it by faith.
This amazing gift of faith is the key that opens new realms of experiential peace and joy. Faith is a three strand cord in my life; believing, receiving, and rejoicing. When God speaks, first I believe it as truth, then I receive it as reality, and then I rejoice because I am confident that He will do it.
This world, in its unredeemed state, teaches us to “wait and see” before getting overly excited about much of anything. It trains our thoughts to become skeptical about things hoped for or promises made. We are told to expect the worst so that we are not disappointed. It is a culture that throws ice water on those who have childlike faith. Unfortunately, I see this even in the body of Christ. Many have become skeptical about the promises of God. It is time to see your faith fully restored! God is restoring the assurance of faith to His sons and daughters.
Someone recently said to me that they were “sure hoping” that what they were standing in faith for was actually God. I immediately responded by telling a story from when I was a young believer.
I had been growing in the Lord and was beginning to take big steps of faith as I heard His voice, but then would become fearful that my “faith” was based merely on my desires and not truly His voice. I didn’t trust my hearing! These thoughts would steal my peace and joy because they stole my confident assurance. One day the Father sat me down to have a “Father/daughter” talk (I love those moments). He said,
“Daughter, a good parent is always watching over their little ones. They know where they are, what they are doing, saying, and wanting. Children love to tell their parents their desires; just as you do with Me. Do you think I am unaware of what you are thinking? I know what you are believing for and it is up to Me, as your Father, to make my voice known to you. Stop worrying about what you are believing for and have faith that I will not let you go astray. It is MY job to make sure that you hear My voice and no other. Have faith in My ability to make sure that you hear Me and follow Me.”
This was such revelation to me! I was young and spending way too much time worrying about “getting it right,” rather than having faith that He would make sure that I heard Him and would be taken to the right place. Such peace and joy came as this burden was removed. My prayer life changed from often agonizing pleas for His help to confident praise of His goodness, protection, and love. I was able to take His hand and simply walk forward, knowing that He was leading the way.
The enemy will always try to hit faith with fear. It will often come with the words, “Did God say that?” That question alone is the doorway to fear that will rob you of assured and confident faith. This question is like the enemy inviting you to sit you down and have a counterfeit “father/child” talk. If we sit down and entertain this question then peace and joy is robbed. Moreover, faith and trust in the confidence of your Father’s care for you is turned to doubt and being double-minded.
John 10:27-30 assure us that we will hear His voice,
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.””
We are His sheep (His children and most valued possession). He makes sure that we hear His voice so that we can follow. The enemy cannot snatch you out of the Father’s hand, but he will surely whisper questions that will attempt to steal your peace.
It is the Holy Spirit’s job to make sure that you hear His voice. If you have heard Him and are standing in faith for a promise, then know that He has taken your hand in it and will lead you.
Don’t get stuck on the details of the promise (how the journey will look) because rarely does the journey to our promise look like what we thought it would. And more often than not the fulfillment is much better than we believed for! Many times my interpretation of something has added details and presumptions that were not accurate. It has been vitally important in my life not to begin to doubt or fuss with turns—or even setbacks—that appeared opposite of the promise. As I remain in confident assurance I always find myself in the manifest truth of Ephesians 3:20,
“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”
My “details” would have left me lacking but His path always has taken me to even greater joys and heights!
Twenty years ago I was given a postcard with a verse on it that hung in my home until recently, when I gifted it back to the person who originally gave it to me. The verse is from Philippians 1:6,
“…being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
He began it and He will complete it! In YOU! I am the most unlikely person to live the life that I’ve been living for so many years. I was such a fearful child who had almost no confidence, felt insignificant and thought my life would be a train wreck. Then Jesus came in and I just stand in awe as I see the work that HE began and is completing in me.
It’s time to get happy, to stand in awe, to live in confident assurance and to rejoice in the victories that He has promised even before they are seen. If He has shown them to you then they are sure! Take His hand and know that He will make His voice known to you. Put your faith in Him even more than any promise because HE IS THE PROMISE! Every promise is realized as you have faith in Him.
“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! “For who has known the mind of the LORD? Or who has become His counselor?” “Or who has first given to Him And it shall be repaid to him?” For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
(This article was written three years ago today but it is so appropriate for now.)
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