“Just have a little faith.”

by Joan C Webb on April 26, 2011

Flowers verse websize postcardYou realize the person aiming this advice at you means well. Still it’s not easy to do when things seem so messed up.

Okay, face it: Sometimes faith seems far away. At other times faith surprises you and swells up inside. For example, although Abraham had previously tried to control his own future (lying about his wife and getting a surrogate mother for his promised offspring) when he faced the confusing circumstances on Mt. Moriah concerning his young heir Isaac, Abraham had faith that God would see him through.

Though you try with all the discernment you can muster, you’ll never know exactly what tomorrow holds. If you’re like most people, you wish you could. It’s frustrating when well-intentioned attempts to “direct” your family, job, health, church, or the economy fail to produce the results you want.

Yet frustration can give way to faith:

  • Faith in those who genuinely love and care about you.
  • Faith in your God-given talents and calling.
  • And ultimate faith in the One who created and sustains the world and supplied your Savior.

Today’s Q: Will you loosen your grip on people, things, and circumstances and toss over to God for what you cannot do. (Remember, this is merely a suggestion in the form of a question. You have the option to respond with a “yes” or a “no” or a renegotiation or a “let me think about it and I’ll get back to you.”)

If you’re open to it, leave me a comment. I’d love to hear your answer. I’m seriously thinking about my response right now . . .

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

tentmaker April 28, 2011 at 9:53 am

well, i would like to try that, but i’m not sure how. can you give an example from simple life?
and where is the line between having faith in God to direct your life and being irresponsible and lazy?

Diane Markins April 28, 2011 at 11:04 am

This one is great food for thought, Joan. I’m certainly one who “directs” my life…with constant reminders that I’m not really doing that at all. Like the previous comment implies, there is a fine line between “giving it all to God” and then not being a good steward. Faith paired with personal responsibility is the target, I guess.

MaryL May 1, 2011 at 10:31 pm

I have found that I get myself into trouble and people get themselves into trouble in general, when they try to control what is God’s and don’t take responsibility for what is theirs. My concusion so far in my life is that God wants me to control only three things: Love God with all my heart, Love my neighbor as myself, and to ‘show up’ even in the hard situations in life. The rest of life including other’s actions, thoughts or opinions, events, circumstances, etc. these are all God’s.
This realization has resulted in my daily practice of “letting go”. Letting go of my agenda. Letting go of my need to control people, circumstances, and things. Letting go of the fear that is under my need to control. Letting go of fear opens the door to trusting that God is good and my life is unfolding according to his plan.
So my answer is a resounding YES.

Joan C. Webb May 9, 2011 at 11:45 pm

I can hear your resounding “yes” through cyber-space, MaryL! :-) Thanks for sharing.

Joan C. Webb May 10, 2011 at 12:13 am

Tentmaker, I’m wondering what you mean by being “irresponsible and lazy.” I wish we could sit and chat for a while.
And at the risk of being completely irrelevant for what you’re asking (since we’re not talking back and forth here!) I share this “example from simple life.” It’s part of my story that I told in my book, “It’s a Wonderful (Imperfect) Life:
“Lord, I can’t guarantee my husband’s reactions and beliefs,” I prayed. “I’m tired of trying. I release him.” I considered the implications and continued, “I can’t predict the future; he may choose to leave. Yet I can’t keep trying so hard to do what isn’t my responsibility anyway. I give up control of his life and mine. The result is Yours.”
Reflecting on my decision, I’m at a loss to effectively share it. I faced the end of my trying so hard to make it all just right in this relationship that meant so much to me. I couldn’t change Richard to better understand me or God, so I accepted my powerlessness and unleashed my hold. This involved a level of faith I hadn’t experienced before: trusting that surrender was wise, that the process would be worthwhile and that God was in complete control whatever the result.
It seemed like the ultimate paradox: In order to find what was missing (reduced fear, joy, rest from over-trying and over-caring, God’s unconditional love), I released what I longed for (nurturing relationship, increased intimacy, healthy interaction, mutual validation).

I’m thinking of you tonight. And praying…

Joan C. Webb May 10, 2011 at 12:17 am

Hi Diane,
Yes, I believe that having faith in God is part of taking responsibility to do what it is that I need to do in order to grow, heal, mature. This is what is doable and reasonable for me. I can’t change anyone else, but I can cooperate with God to grow and change myself. And although that is relaxing to trust Him, it does not mean resting on my laurels and doing nothing.

Opal March 7, 2012 at 2:04 am

I believe that faith is what gets me through tough times. It is know that no matter what, that releasing my will to the Fathers hand. When I first got saved I thought all I had to do was make amends and live a better life and all would be ok. Now I see that as I allow God to work in side of me, no matter if it is painful or not, that all things work out for those who love Him and called according to His will. It all just takes time, like a tree with deep roots.

Joan C. Webb March 16, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Hi Opal! I love your statement: It all just takes time, like a tree with deep roots!” :-)

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