faith based miracles

How to Extinguish Fear and Feed Your Faith While Waiting for A Miracle

When I was a young girl and heard Bibles stories like God parting the Red Sea for the Israelites; David slaying the giant Goliath; Daniel surviving the lions’ den; Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego coming out unscathed from the fiery furnace; Jesus healing lepers, paralytics, the blind, deaf, and dumb and raising the dead, I was enthralled by those stories of God’s miraculous power. I didn’t doubt for a minute God’s ability to work such miracles, and I vividly remember thinking, “How amazing it would be to be a part of such a story!” “I’d love to experience such a miracle in my own life!” 

Have you had similar thoughts? Maybe you’ve had friends or family who’ve experienced the miraculous power of God through something like healing from a life-threatening illness, deliverance from a drug addition, surviving a horrific car wreck, or a totally unexpected and positive overturn of their financial situation. Did you ever think, “Wow! I’d love to be a part of a miracle story too!” Or, maybe you’ve been the subject of one of God’s miraculous stories.

Godwillmakeaway.jpg

What I didn’t take into consideration when I heard the Bible stories—and what you also might not have considered when you’ve heard stories of God’s power-- is that before a miracle can occur, the recipients of the miracles first must face a time of great trial, a testing of their faith, and the temptation to succumb to fear and doubt. For instance, the Israelites were fleeing a huge, well-trained army when they came upon the Red Sea where there was no apparent way forward. David had to overcome the mocking of his brothers and the entire Israeli army who wanted to undermine his belief that he would defeat the giant. Daniel had to contend with the continual envy of his peers who plotted against him. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had to decide whether they’d disobey and dishonor God by worshipping an earthly king, or obey God and face the real possibility of dying a horrible death in a blazing hot fire. Everyone whom Jesus healed beforehand had experienced the suffering of physical pain or the emotional pain of being an outcast. We all would like to be a part of a miracle; however, we usually don’t want to sign up for the circumstances that must necessarily precede the working of that miracle! 

I am waiting on the Lord to show Himself faithful in a situation in my life right now where a miracle is needed. I fully believe God is capable of working the miracle. But I am also keenly aware of the temptation to succumb to fear and doubt; I feel that I am living in a crucible where my faith is being tested and refined. I know that if I focus on the circumstances of my situation--the ‘what ifs’—I will be tempted to doubt God’s goodness or His miracle-working power. So as I wait upon Him, I have a choice: I can feed my faith, or I can feed my fears. I cannot feed them both as fear and faith cannot co-exist. You have the same choice. What will you choose?

·    I am choosing: To keep my focus upon God Who is the ‘Author and Perfecter of my faith’, and over and above my every circumstance. (Hebrews 12:2; Philippians 1:12) I am praising Him for orchestrating the circumstances of my life so that my faith— which is more precious than gold— will be strengthened, and so that the stage is set for a miracle to occur! (1 Peter 1:7)

·    I am choosing: To rejoice in knowing that the trial I am going through is an instrument of God’s grace, and thank Him for this trial which was designed to test my faith, produce steadfastness in me, and cause me to grow more and more into His image, complete and lacking nothing. (James 4:2-4)

·    I am choosing: To praise Him for His faithfulness and love, and to thank Him for interceding for me, that my faith would not fail. (Hebrews 7:25; Luke 22:32)

·    I am choosing: To praise God for His perfect timing; He is never ahead or behind, but ALWAYS comes through in the ‘fullness of time’! (Galatians 4:4; Romans 5:6; 1 Timothy 2:6)

·    I am choosing: To praise God that His thoughts and ways are not my thoughts and ways, His are infinitely greater because He is infinitely wiser than I! (Isaiah 55:9)

·    I am choosing: To commit my will to God’s will, pray and pour out my heart to  Him, and listen to His Spirit speak to me! (Psalm 37:5; Psalm 62:8; Psalm 25:14; Daniel 2:22)

·    I am choosing: To trust in the Lord and not lean upon my own understanding, to look for every path God may open before me--and as doors open—make sure to inquire of Him whether that is the way He would have me to go. ( Proverbs 3:5-7; 1 Chronicles 10:14; 2 Samuel 5:19, 23)

·    I am choosing: To immediately renew my mind in the truth of Who God is and what He is able to do every time a fearful thought or doubt about God’s faithfulness arises! (2 Corinthians 10:5) Truth such as that God is with me at ALL times, that He will never leave me or forsake me, and that He is ‘mighty to save’! (Deuteronomy 31:6; Joshua 1:9; Isaiah 43:2; Zephaniah 3:17)

·    I am choosing: To trust in Jehovah Jireh, the God Who will provide for ALL of my needs according to His glorious riches (Genesis 22:14; Philippians 4:19) and Who knows me best, loves me most, and is ‘always at work for my good and His glory’! (Romans 8:28)

·    I am choosing: To feed my faith by reading the Bible daily, by reading devotionals like Streams in the Desert and My Utmost for His Highest, as well as biographies of heroes of faith to remind me that God is ALWAYS trustworthy and ALWAYS unfailing in His love. (Psalm 52:8; 85:7; 119:41; Revelation 3:7; 19:11)

·    I am choosing: To not listen to grumblers, complainers, faith and joy ‘robbers’. (Psalm 28:7; Nehemiah 8:10; 1 Timothy 6:3-5; 2 Timothy 2)

·    I am choosing: To share my need for a miracle with others whom I know will join with me in prayer and lift me and my need up to the Lord. (Exodus 17:11-12; 1 Timothy 2:1; James 5:16; Galatians 6:2)

Faith means taking God at His Word. As you feed your faith by reading the Bible -- the Word of One Who cannot lie and that is filled with accounts of His miracle working power—you will be convinced that NOTHING is impossible for God! (Numbers 23:19; Genesis 18:14; Jeremiah 32:17; Luke 1:37; Matthew 19:26) And I’m confident that your faith will result in you seeing the miraculous hand of God at work on your behalf, and you’ll find yourself at the center of your own miraculous story that will in turn build up the faith of others in the Body of Christ! 

What about you? Are you waiting upon God to act on your behalf in some situation in your life, or in the life of a loved one? How are you choosing to spend your time as you wait upon Him? Are you feeding your fears, or feeding your faith? Was there a particular choice (or choices) that I am choosing to make that God convicted that you need to be making as well?

Written by Julie

 

Are you curious to know how much fear, worry and anxiety is impacting your life? Take our free quiz to learn how fearful, worried and anxious you really are?

Faith-based Miracles: Another Blessing of Trials

“Wow!  What a miracle! God must be real!”  These are words I’ve heard uttered many times after I share what transpired in the life of my ministry partner Jamie throughout her ordeal with flesh-eating bacteria.  Interesting to consider, had she never gone through the trial of her illness and subsequent hospitalization, there never would have been such a testimony of God’s miraculous working in her life. Have you ever stopped to consider that virtually every miracle you’ve heard of or read about involves some kind of situation that would be described as a crisis, trial, or tribulation?

The infamous plagues in Egypt came about only after the Israelites cried out to God for help due to their being slaves in bondage to the oppressive Egyptians. The miraculous parting of the Red Sea came about because it appeared to the distraught Israelites that they were going to be overtaken by the Egyptian army.  The legendary story of David striking the giant Goliath with the stone occurred only when the Israelites needed someone to rescue them from the clutches of the Philistines.  

Daniel’s miraculous escape from the jaws of the lion’s mouths would not have occurred had he not first been thrown into the lion’s den. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego could never have testified to God’s divine intervention in their coming out unscathed from a fiery furnace had they not been thrown into the furnace in the first place. Many miraculous testimonies from the recent Oklahoma tornadoes—for example, the woman and her small dog surviving the utter destruction of her home—would never have arisen out of the rubble had there never been a tornado. Jamie would never have known the miraculous healing power of God had she not had the dreaded flesh-eating bacteria. 

Faith in God, “without which it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6) often is a necessary ingredient for miracles to occur.  Moses and his brother Aaron stood resolutely up to Pharaoh, the most powerful person in the world at the time, because they trusted in God’s word that He would deliver His people. The parting of the Red Sea occurred after Moses demonstrated his faith in God by raising his staff in obedience to God’s command. David, a mere shepherd boy, boldly faced Goliath and endured the mockery of the Philistines as well as those in the Israelite camp—including his brothers—because He had faith that the God who had saved him from the bear and the lion in the fields where he protected his sheep would be with him and give him the victory over the giant who defied the Name of the Living God.  

Daniel’s faith in God led him to pray at his usual times and in his usual place, even after an edict prohibiting such behavior and knowing that he would be subject to punishment for doing so. His faith led him to be thrown into the lion’s den, and his faith also led him safely out of it.  Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had faith to refuse to worship the king, even though by not doing so they knew they courted death in a fiery furnace.  They also trusted in God’s power to save them, and they surrendered their will to His superior will knowing that even if He did not save them they would never worship anyone other than the One True God. Their faith in God led them to be thrown into the fiery furnace; their faith in God also led to their miraculous rescue from the flames.  The woman in the tornado in Oklahoma had the faith to pray for her own and her dog’s safety; both emerged miraculously unhurt while everything around them was leveled.  Jamie’s faith in God led her to cry out to Him for healing as soon as her pain began; her faith in His power and love preceded the miracle of her having a flesh-eating bacteria that did not eat any of her flesh!

God works miracles to bring glory to His Name; to strengthen the faith of the Body of believers who know Him; and to draw those who don’t yet know Him to Himself in order that they too might gain saving faith in the One Who died —and lives —for them!

Most everyone would say they would love to experience a miracle from God. The question is, do you really have faith in Our Miracle-working God?  And, are you willing to endure whatever is necessary to prove His miracle-working power?

Written by Julie Van Gorp

Are you curious to know how much fear, worry and anxiety is impacting your life? Take our free quiz to learn how fearful, worried and anxious you really are?