Supreme Ambition Ministries

To Know Christ and to Make Him Known – Philippians 3:10

A Convenient God…A struggling Faith

Please view the video clip before reading my comments…

Whoa! That was powerful, huh? As I watched it I had a whole bushel basket full of emotions and thoughts that flooded my mind. I was thrilled as the young lady danced with the Lord and allowed him to provide for her needs. He seemed to give her what she needed almost before she knew she needed it. I became nervous as she allowed the demons and Luicifer himself to take her attention away from God with alluring temptations and then smash her hopes on the rocks of frustration and despair. I found myself wanting to warn her not to allow this enemy to sow into her sacred soil. I was thrilled as she tried to make her way back to God and I cheered as our mighty Lord rescued and restored her to his perfect will once again.

This, of course, could have been a microsom of each of us. How many times have we found ourselves in the glorious Presence of God with our vision in tact and our faith so strong we could move a mountain (or at least leap a tall building with a single bound). Then, almost without warning, the scene changes and we find ourselves in a dark spiritual cavern with hords of demons all around us, pulling us further and further away from the Lord we love. How did we get here anyway?

Life just isn’t fair is it? For what did you sign up, when you became a Christian? Did you think it was going to involve all this struggle? What kind of a God is it who allows us to go through such trials, disappointments and hurts? As I look at the state of the Church today and compare what we have with what the New Testament teaches, I find a large gap. Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote in his classic book, “The Call to discipleship”, “When Jesus Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” How does that mesh with the convenient Christianity in our western culture? I ask, “In an effort to become culturally relevant with the gospel message are we in danger of losing the Christ of the gospel ?” I mused with the flock under my charge recently, “When was the last time you saw someone weeping over their sins, because they knew they had offended a holy God?” I dare say it is a very rare event. Rather, it is more common for people to simply want to add a little ‘Jesus’ to their life, so to speak. After all they don’t really think their life is all that bad, but could use a little boost in the right direction.

A Christianity which fails to prepare a young believer for battles in life is a Christianity not worth having. To get someone to ‘grunt’ at a few theological statements, pronounce them saved and leave them to face the hords of evil by themselves is to place them in a worse state than they were previously. A six week course in ‘discpleship’ was not sufficient for the first disciples of Jesus and certainly will not suffice for us today.

The young lady in the video depicts most all of us, when we first become Christians. The birds sing more sweetly. The trees seem to blow more fervently in the breeze. We pray and our prayers are answered. It is so very easy to believe…But, there comes a time, when this loving God of ours allows us to be tested and tried. We pray and are met with silence. Instead of a gentle breeze at our back, we find gail force winds in our face. No robins or sparrows flitting around us now, but rather vultures swarm us, threatening to pick the last ounce of hope from our faith. In the beginning we had perfect fellowship with the Lord. He was with us all the time, but now, we can hardly sense him at all. WHY? Why does a supposedly loving God treat us this way? Why doesn’t he just ‘swoop’ down and defeat that which opposes our newfound faith? Why does He wait so long before rescuing us? I confess, I don’t know all the answers to those questions. I do know there is something important about the struggle of faith. It is important for us to come to the determination that we want God, his kingdom, his will, his way, no matter what. It is important for us to struggle long enough to know that we are absolutely unable to help ourselves. It is when we reach the end of our horded resources that our Father’s full giving has only begun.

So, is your god convenient? Does he do what you want him to do, when you want him to do it? Will you serve him, even when he disappoints you? Does he immediately rescue you out of all your trials? If not, hold on. You just might have the right God after all. Though He linger long He never cometh late.

August 23rd, 2007 Posted by | Discipleship, True Church LIfe | 3 comments

3 Responses to “A Convenient God…A struggling Faith”

  1. I was a little troubled by the video. It depicted Christ as wanting to help the girl but being prevented from doing so by the demons. I am afraid that in most of Christianity in this day, the devil is portrayed as being as powerful as God. That simply isn’t so. He has no power at all except that which God gives him and can do nothing except that which God allows.
    In the video, the demons kept God from the girl but in the Scriptures, in Hebrews 13:5, God says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” I have heard more than one preacher/teacher quote John 10:28 which says no one can snatch us out of Jesus’ hand. And then deny the reality of that statement by saying they can take themselves out of God’s hands. While it is true that deliberate sin in our lives can hurt our fellowship with the Lord, still if we are truly His, He never leaves us nor forsakes us. There are many examples in the Word that teach this. Abraham, Moses, David, Peter, just to name a few.
    John Calvin said, “All the reverence we owe to God must be paid to His Word.” We need more of the true teaching of the Word of God and less teaching from the minds of men.
    I liked your article though. It rescued the video!
    I love you, Pastor Dave

  2. Sandy, I am encouraged by your candor. You are demonstrating how we can have dialogs about our faith. Every metaphor, every analogy, “every video” breaks down at some point. That’s because they are not the real thing. The real thing is life. Thank you for your encouraging words.

  3. I loved the video and thought it spoke to what an all-sufficient Savior we have in Christ. Can anyone tell me then name of that song and who is performing it?