DAY 8: “Crisis of Belief”

“We are all born with a “God sized hole” in our heart that only He can fill.”

There comes a time in everyone’s life when we get to decide whose faith we are going to stand on.  For some, it comes early, and others later on. Some of us ignore it not wanting to acknowledge what is happening at all. We either take a fight or flight reaction. Growing up we are shaped and molded by our experiences and these experiences can also shape our knowledge of who God is. We are all born with a “God sized hole” in our heart that only He can fill. When tough times come, and we are faced with a “Crisis of Belief” the things we know to be true can be tossed around, questioned, and challenged.  The real question is “How are we going to deal with it?”

For me, the first real “Crisis of Belief” was when my grandpa and grandma on my dad’s side passed away within 2 years of each other. They lived in our small town, and I was extremely close to them. My grandpa would pick me up in his old smelly, pickup truck from the time I was 4 and take me across town to my piano lessons (taught by my grandma). We had a long driveway, and let’s just say that he was better at going forward than backwards.  I would grab my piano books, jump into the cab of the truck (I was a tall 4-year-old) and start giggling.  Here we go……wait for it……wait for it…. I could also see my mom looking out the window as she was also…waiting for it.  My grandpa, not being particularly good at backing up would slowly creep down the driveway toward the street.  And then, it happened…. clunk!

There was a big cement sewer thing at the end of the driveway, and it had a rather steep drop-off. He would back down the hill, go over our newly mowed lawn, and boom, run over it every time, dropping to the street!  I would giggle, and he would just smile and drive on to my piano lesson.   My grandma was an accomplished pianist, dancer and everything arts related.  In the 1920’s she put on amazing musical productions in the city park bandstand and hundreds of people would come to see them. She knew Jesus.  During my piano lessons my grandmother would place her hand on my back as she was teaching me. It was later that I realized she was quietly praying over me every time. Each week, I had an hour lesson and sometimes we would get up, go into the dining room and she would say “Let’s dance!”. She had the cutest laugh.  She would grab my hands and we would twirl around.  I remember learning how to waltz and do the cha-cha.  I loved my Grandparents.

Then I had my first crisis of belief.  Losing both my grandpa and grandma at a young age (12 and 14) was something I had never thought of.  Suddenly I had to come to terms with that.  On Sundays after church, there would be no “Woo-hoo, giggle, giggle” at the back door of our house.  Holidays would look quite different.  Who would teach me piano now?  As a young teenager, I had questions.

Even as I write this my eyes fill with emotion.  I was blessed to have the relationship I did with my grandparents.  The question was now “how do I keep my faith level moving forward as I navigate through this season of life?”

Romans 10:17 New King James (NKJ) says, “So faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” Great, so in order to keep my faith moving forward I need to make sure I am hearing the Word of God right?

Well then, how do you hear?  The Amplified Bible (AMP) says, “So faith comes by hearing {what is told} and what is heard comes by the preaching {of the message that came from the lips} of Christ {the Messiah Himself}.”

The bible is the living, breathing Word of God.  It was given to us to navigate through life.  God speaks through His Word. All the answers to life’s questions are in there.  Nothing we are going through is a surprise to God.  To keep moving forward we need to strengthen our faith by hearing the Word and then applying it to our life.

John 1:1 (AMP) says, “In the beginning {before all-time} was the Word (Christ), and the Word was with God, and Word was God Himself.” If you have a bible, then you can hear the Word by reading it. God is speaking to us personally.  I like to read it out loud.  There is something about having the book and a pen in your hand.  I like to underline and write in the margins.  I even write dates by some scriptures that the Lord highlights to me so that when I read them again, I can see other times when the Lord was speaking to me about the same thing. I don’t know if you are like me, but the Lord usually must highlight things more than once for me to “get it”.   I also like to play it on my phone (with a British accent for fun) and play different translations of a particular verse I am studying.  These are all ways to “hear”. I also journal and write things down so I can go back and read it later.  I usually get more revelation from that as well.

One other thing that is important when we go through these times is to know and call on a mature believer who can listen and offer wisdom if needed.  We aren’t meant to go through the tough times alone.  I had my parents, my maternal grandma, and the Lord to help me.  I believe all these things helped form my foundation at an early age for what I would walk through in the future.  More on that later.

God knows what we need way before we do. He will never leave us or forsake us.

Deuteronomy 31:8 “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

So, when your faith is challenged let go and let God help you, heal you, and fill you.  He loves you and has a way through the valley and over to the other side.

Say this with me: Father, in the Name of Jesus, I know there will be storms in life where my faith will be tested.  I thank you that you are my rock and that you will never leave me or forsake me.  I will not be afraid or discouraged.  I thank you that you go before me and are always with me. I’m walking through the valley and I’m coming out stronger on the other side.

Shalom,

Mama Swan