Monday, June 22, 2020

"I Believe God"

"I believe God." (Acts 27.25)

Faith is the first thing we bring in our recognition of God.
We could say that faith is the only essential thing in our recognition.

If we have faith all else will come under its shadow.
     When we truly Believe we will surrender,
          we will see the pathway of obedience,
               we will find the way of love,
                    indeed we will find opened to us all the paths of Life.

Paul's experience in the storm is such a picture of life.
He was on a journey, with a God ordained purpose.
     A ship was found, and wind to carry it.
And yet the unforeseen took over and battered all plans
     until all was lost and even life was seen to be at an end.
"All hope"... how absolute ... 
     "all hope that we should be saved was taken away."

How it shows life's processes:
man alone cannot prevail,
our hopes and resources are shredded by reality.
The spiritual lies beyond the natural,
and nothing changes until all hope is gone.

God's message came to Paul, and he said to the sailors,
"wherefore" - because of this, "be of good cheer."

And Paul furthered his explanation saying
"I believe God, that it shall be."

This is always the secret.
     We are always safe in the Word of God.
Faith in that which God has spoken always makes a way,
     through all the storms,
          through all the darkness,
               through all the need, 
                    and through all the fears.

God had spoken before the journey ever began,
"Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome." (Acts 23.11)
     Now Paul repeated the words to those around him, "be of good cheer."

What a picture - "Paul stood forth in the midst of them" -
     stood to proclaim in the midst of the winds and the waves,
          stood to proclaim when all others had abandoned hope.
How the words must have filled the space, "I BELIEVE GOD."
     The waves had no more power to destroy for God had ordained otherwise.
     All ship and cargo may be lost but not one life. 

God is the giver of life, and the enemy cannot take it from God's children.
     "My times are in Thy hand" ...says Psalm 31.13.
          All our times...all the things which make up our lives,
               are secure in His keeping.

               And God will bring us also, safe through the storm.


  1. Amen! The Apostle Paul had more than enough faith to share with his companions on the ship and with everyone he encountered on his life's spiritual journey. Because of this God-given vision of his mission (which only means it had a basis in reality, Paul having been taken to heaven and having had encounters with Christ Himself,) he was charged with encouraging his fellow believers in Christ, and although not all of the leaders heeded his instructions and teachings as he tried to confront things like legalism in the Church and false reliance on Jewish laws and customs rather than following the Holy Spirit, in my study of Paul's writings, I find he was right most of the time on most issues concerning the Church. We may not all receive the spectacular spiritual experiences that Paul had prior and after his conversion, but, like Paul we can all have the confidence that we are not going to die until our mission is fully completed. But in order to receive the kind of faith that Paul had that enabled him to stand when everything around him was falling apart (literally, his boat!) we must have a clear vision and a specific word from God about what exactly our own personal mission is, separate and apart from our mission as Christians from a broad perspective. I'm convinced that the only way to receive this information is from private time spent with God. Ask Him, "Lord, what is MY mission?" He will answer you if you are persistent. Once you find out, it is just as you said here, God will give you all of the resources, all of the time, and all of the grace you will need to complete your mission as well as the confidence that your life will not be taken from you until your work is completed. Amazingly, after you receive this personal word from God, even though you may feel bereft at times, you will find that you even have some extra confidence to share with others. As Jesus says speaking of the mustard tree which started out as being the smallest plant in the garden but became so large that "the birds of the air will come and nest in its branches."