I pray you have had a wonderful Christmas day and were able to celebrate the wonder of Emmanuel—God with us.
As Christmas day is almost over, I’m thinking ahead to 2013. Today I looked back at a blog I wrote at the beginning of 2012. I’m still holding to the goal I made back then and plan to do so into the new year.
The following blog was first posted on January 15, 2012.
One of my goals for 2012 is “Exercise More.”
As I’ve been thinking about how to do that, the idea of exercising my faith more came to mind.
A verse from Scripture says:
… bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things…(1 Timothy 4:8 NKJV)
When I think of exercising my faith to become more godly, I think of stepping out in faith—of having faith for things I was unable to believe for in the past. It’s about praying prayers outside my comfort zone and believing God will answer.
I remember my daughter Tami at six years old. The doctor declared our cat, Riffy, had an infection which was unresponsive to medications. He told us to take him home, that he would get sicker, and then we could bring him back to be put to sleep.
My thought was to prepare our children for the death of our cat. I took Tami aside to talk to her about the situation. Before I could tell her everything, she prayed, “God I know You are powerful, and I know that You would not take my best friend away. Thank You that he is going to get well.”
At the time I couldn’t help but think of Hebrews 11:1.
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
Our cat did get well. Everyone was amazed but Tami. She exercised her faith by praying a believing prayer. She did not focus on the circumstance or even the “facts.” She looked at God and believed in His power to heal.
I’m asking God to help me exercise my faith more in the same way. Instead of believing people when they say, “It’s hopeless,” “It can’t be done,” or “Death is inevitable”—whether death of a dream, death of a marriage, or death of a loved one–I’m determined to pray for God to intervene in miraculous ways with His resurrection power.
From experience I know He intervenes in that way, but sometimes I get complacent. I give in to doubt and unbelief. Godlessness (not calling God into the situation) begins to creep in and crowd out godliness. Fear can overwhelm my faith and the result is feeble, faithless prayers.
I’m heading for the workout room—my prayer closet—more often this year. I want to get into better shape spiritually than I’ve ever been. I’m excited about the miracles that will bring–especially in my heart.
How about you? Is your faith flabby? In need of some strengthening? Are you ready to exercise your faith by believing our big God for some big answers to prayer in 2013?