A Personal Testimony: A Test of Faith

With the recent tragic earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, I thought I would re-publish my post from Upward Edge entitled: “A Personal Testimony: A Test of Faith.” You can view more posts like this by going to www.upwardedge.com. I would love to hear from you. 

 Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. … 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live….John 11:21, 25. NRSV
“If you have been here, my brother would not have died.” Have you said that to God? How many times, over and over again? “God, where are you?”
Where’s God when tragedies hit our household, our friend’s household or when we witness the catastrophic events that happen around our globe. God, if you had been here, my brother, my sister, father and my mother would not have died.

Well, let me tell you a secret. God was there and God is always present with our loved ones and with all of humankind when tragedy hits.

God was with my brother “Kenny” when he died at the young age of 28. I saw God throughout Kenneth’s dying. God was there when my father passed. The night before, my father expressed his gratefulness and delight in hearing my voice yet again. God was there when my mother took her last shallow breath. I saw her and my father’s new image; new youthful bodies with my angel eyes in a dream the day she died. God was there when my brother, Calvin left this earth, void of human companionship, but not without the comfort and love of God.

God gave new life to them and God promises to give new life to each of us. God has promised to be “God in the face of Death” (Max Lucado, 2006). God promised that he would be my protector and I repeat often: “the Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1) as a reminder of my protection and of my protector. God promised that he would be my deliverer: I will be with you to the end of your time (Matthew 28:20).

Yes, God is always there. He is our resurrection, he is our life; all we need to do is believe even at the point of our own death.

Doubts and Uncertainties, Part II

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from the words of my groaning? O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, and am not silent…Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you even at my mother’s breast. From birth I was cast upon you; from my mother’s womb you have been my God. Psalm 22:1-2; 9-10.

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9

As confusing as the Christian scriptures can be; is it any wonder that we have doubts and uncertainties? Is it any wonder that these scriptures give us the fortitude to gone on; to praise and trust our God?

God, I am glad that you are bigger than my doubts and uncertainties. I am glad that you are the great mystery that keeps me coming back for more. God, I am so glad that your ways are far beyond our comprehension. God I come to trust, that your way is “out of our league [and it is] best to trust [your] benevolence” (Chris Glaser, 1994).

I have come to believe that my doubts and uncertainties will assure me that I will have a lifetime; pardon me, an eternity to experience your love and to become one with you; even as I continually question the uncertainties of this world and the role I play in it. Let’s pray.

God, I am so glad that you are not in a box. Even the Israelites could not contain you. You are far greater than our imagination. You are far greater than the vocabulary we assign to you: infinite, omnipresent, omnipotent. You are the great mystery who understands all and I pray because of that, you will continue to shower us with your grace and mercy as we struggle through this period in our eternity called life. Amen.

Doubts and Uncertainities

Everything is possible for him who believes. Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief! Mark 9:23b-24 NIV

Doubts and uncertainties; do you have them? I have them all the time. Listen to a few:

God help me keep the faith. Help me not to doubt you. Forgive me for my doubts. Give me the wisdom and the boldness to speak what I believe.

God give people a reason to praise you, to believe in you and to trust you. Yes God, we want those daily miracles. How else are we to believe, to not have doubts?

God, this is one of those days that I don’t know how to pray or feel worthy enough to pray. Forgive me Lord for my doubts and uncertainties; my doubts in you, but above all the doubts that I have in myself.

They say I am created in your image. They say that I am unique and one of a kind. They say that I am valued by you and that I can come to you in spite of my faults; that I am redeemed and accepted by you. They say that I am your ambassador here on earth. But I wonder; how can this be?

God help me to believe in myself. Help me to see what others see in me. Help me not to forget that I am your child, your ambassador. Help me to truly believe that I can do all things if I first truly believe in you and then believe in myself.  Amen.

God’s Vessel

Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Isaiah 55:6 NIV

 God, as I bare my soul to others, may my doubts give others confidence; may my cry allow others to laugh, and my discomfort allows others to be comforted?

 As I search for you and wait to hear your voice, may others hear your voice through me.

 I thank you God for allowing me to be the instrument, the vessel for others to find their way. I pray that in the process I too will find my way.  Amen