A few years ago, when my religion was failing me, a lot of that season was actually about un-learning and re-learning the concept of faith.
Being raised with a charismatic, Word-of-Faith background, my whole picture of faith was to take Scripture that applied to my case, pray, confess the word, and believe with all my heart that what I wanted to happen, would happen. Despite all claims to the contrary–to me, it was a formula I worked. And if it didn’t work, I must have done something wrong.
But when I went through that time when nothing I was doing was working, when God refused to jump through my hoops, and I exhausted myself trying to get a breakthrough…something shifted with regard to my faith, and I realized how incomplete my picture of faith had been.
When you are exhausted and have no more strength–if you are standing up–what do you generally do to keep from falling headlong? You find something to lean on.
And that’s just what I did. With no strength left, my soul began to lean on Jesus, literally for its survival. My long prayers of confession and declaration were reduced to, “God, I lean on You to get me through this day.” There was this knowing that we would make it–or not–by the hand of the Lord, and by nothing else. There was nothing else.
And every day that I leaned on the Lord like that, I made it through that day better than before. Regardless of whether things looked better or worse…slowly but surely, my peace stopped being dependent on circumstances. And slowly but surely, things began to change for the better.
And that’s when I began to live in the truth about faith. Faith isn’t simply about believing; faith is about leaning. Faith is about trust.
After that time, God brought us into a season of much-needed rest, and it has been precious to us. That lasted until about the first of this year, and then we felt a shift, a change. I can feel the stirring of the waters, a strong sense of transition. I don’t know what it’s going to look like, but the in-between is not a comfortable place. It’s like so much that seemed so certain seems uncertain now, and it’s hard to know where to put your footing.
So I’m leaning.
I think it’s important that we take the lessons learned from previous seasons into the new ones. Even though I’ve had a chance to breathe, I don’t want to forget what brought me into that rest in the first place. So every time I feel uncertain, uneasy, or fearful, or want to “work the problem” on my own…I am trying again to purposefully lean upon the Lord. And just like before…every time I do that, I see His hand at work on my behalf.
Hm…seems like God is teaching me a thing or two. 🙂