Walking in childlike faith is totally not the same thing a walking in childish faith. Childlike faith commits all things to the Heavenly Abba, knowing that He will always be in charge- always be trustworthy… and always come through- but as it is with parents- things will happen in His way and His timing. Childish faith wants what it wants and wants it now- and demands the Heavenly Father give what is being asked for. It becomes angry and resentful in the process because of the ways he “fails” to come through. God never fails His children. He never gives a stone when we’re asking for bread. That is a lie that has more power to destroy a human being than cancer itself.
I can see the Lord sitting me down when I’m behaving childish, and just holding me. Helping me to see that His ways are better. His plans are greater. He’s like… just hold on a second. Calm down. You really can be at peace today! It’s in that moment that I can take a deep breath and receive the impartation of the type of faith that pleases the Lord. The kind of faith that also walks in patience… just believing Him for the best whether or not I see it in my life-time. The kind that suffers reproach for the gospel. It’s the kind that willingly suffers on a cross. The kind that bears no popularity in the eyes of man. It’s the rare- precious and priceless type of faith.
Something that I’m realizing more and more about the ministry of Jesus when he was here on Earth over 2000 years ago, is that it practically made NO sense.
One moment he’s turning water into wine because his mother asked him to- even though he stated himself that it was before his time.
And the next minute you have the family of Lazarus crying their eyes out- emotionally sick over the fact that Jesus HIMSELF just let their brother die- completely die. Stone cold dead. And out of Jesus’ love for Lazarus and his family- Jesus HIMSELF “wept” in that time! Why would He do that??!?!? Wasn’t He the “big healer”??!?!
And then after Lazarus was “good and dead” (forgive the play on words) Jesus chooses to raise him and completely heal him?
What happened to the healing ministry of Jesus when He willingly and gladly took up the Roman cross and died- a criminals death? Why would He do that? Why would He allow all of His apostles to “suffer” and die on crosses as well (with the exception of John)? If the Kingdom of God is for the purpose of making us “well” and taking away injustice in the Earth, then why did all these vast injustices happen to the people of God who followed so closely to Jesus and even to Jesus himself?
I would argue that the Kingdom looks totally differently when it actually comes in manifest form- than we would ever in a million years expect. I agree that He is the Healer. I agree that He is the very resurrection and life itself… but His miracles pointed to Himself- to His kindness. They pointed to His nature of LOVE. God is Love. So, somehow I have to believe that it was even loving for Him to allow His disciples to suffer “in the same manner” as He Himself suffered. Somehow I have to accept that suffering is not the big injustice in the Earth. I have to believe that somehow suffering is “producing” something greater in me.
1 Peter 1:6-9 tells us what the POINT, the very substance of our suffering is purposed for!
“In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9 obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”
Do you see that last part???!? “Obtaining the OUTCOME of your faith- the SALVATION OF YOUR SOULS.”
Wow. To me that is suddenly very clear. What the Lord is looking for us to have in childlike faith is this one outcome: The salvation of our souls. Our souls. Souls. May I repeat: the salvation of our souls.
Matthew 10:28 tells us, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
This is part of why 1 Corinthians 14:20 tells us, “Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.” We can’t bumble around expecting anything from God- except the essence of His nature (love, joy, peace, patience, etc.) and that is manifest in strange and unexpected ways. Believe me… in the last days you will see the Lord manifest His nature to you in “strange and unexpected ways.” It’s not going to look like you sitting back in your multi-million dollar home eating chocolate covered acai-berries with perfect health and a crowd of twitter followers. (I’m speaking to believers in Messiah- to clarify). (**Although some believers may be doing this and James 5:5 has something to say to those who fall into that category).
The mystery of God’s perfect timing and will is not something that we can forcibly manifest on the Earth- unless God in His wisdom chooses to move on our behalf in the way we’re asking (as He often does).
Otherwise, it’s best to do as James says in chapter 4:7, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
Let’s take a BIG and juicy pill of “TRUST” and leave every other unanswered question… and every other detail in His mighty and glorious hands. We are going to need the kind of faith in the last days that doesn’t run away when things look confusing- when the Lord doesn’t respond in the way that we were asking. We will need the kind of faith that says, “Though he slay me, I will hope in him; yet I will argue my ways to his face.” (Job 13:15)
(The above photo is my personal property and is not to be duplicated for any reason apart from my permission.)
I’m not saying to stop contending for healing… I’m not saying to stop asking Him for breakthroughs in our lives- because we probably will never stop asking (and He wouldn’t want us to stop asking because He’s told us to do so! (Strangely enough)). But I am saying that we need to step back– and pursue perspective. Let’s get clear- heavenly vision and perspective on the “who, what, when, where, and whys” of this whole thing. Let’s chase after WILLING OBEDIENCE more than we chase after the miracles. Let’s chase the miracles.. and abide in the glory- but Beloved, “obedience is better than sacrifice…” (1 Samuel 15:22). The miracles lead us to a man… and sometimes that man leads us into a garden called “Gethsemane” to sweat drops of blood because of anxiety for the purpose of obeying the Heavenly Father.
All I can say is that we need Him. We (I) need His ever present help. But- I want to not build my life upon the sinking sand of a childish faith. I want to build my life upon the true mysterious God/Man whose ways are so much higher than my own. This is what it means to have faith- child-like faith.
And may He help us. He will because He’s promised to do so.