I need to begin by sharing that this post was inspired by a great message by Pastor Bill Hybels at Willow Creek church in South Barrington, IL, to listen or watch head to: http://media.willowcreek.org/.
As the New Year begins many of us want to get stronger. Stronger in cardio vascular endurance or with our muscles, stronger financially as we get our financial matters in a better place, and in each case you can find or create a plan, that you know with some certainty, will lead to increased strength. I turned as many pastors would to see what the bible has to say about God’s giving increased strength and ability to people.
The Israelites leave Egypt to find the Promised Land, but they don’t know really where they are going, instead they are called to follow a cloud by day and pillar of fire by night. The Israelites are pursued by the Egyptians, and have their backs against the wall of the Red Sea, and again they are told to just keep walking, and God miraculously parts the sea and they are safe. They begin to wonder how they will eat and find drink in the barren wasteland of the wilderness, and again they are told not to worry, and food and water appear miraculously. Peter is told to step out of a boat onto the surface of water, and to trust, and Peter walks on water briefly.
What overwhelms me is that many of the stories in scripture where God increases people’s faith and ability have this pattern: just start walking, I will meet you along the way. Walk into the circumstance that you need strength in, and you will find strength on the way. It’s counterintuitive. Often we want guarantees, assurances, but God wants faith. God wants us to step out trusting in his strength and provision, knowing that HE will meet us on the road to wherever it is that He is leading is, knowing we need Him to be part of the situation for it to succeed. So where is God asking you to step out so that He can show you His power, His strength, so He can strengthen your faith?