On our refrigerator, attached by a random series of accumulated fridge magnets, is this verse:
And the LORD will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.
I stood in our kitchen today and stared at that small, yellow page. My handwriting. The encouragement I wrote for my wife during a tough time she faced. The Lord guided me to that passage and it sang in my soul that day so many months ago.
But times are even tougher now, not so much for her, but for me. And I look at that verse written in my own hand and I want to believe it, though I can’t see it.
That verse is just one of many things I want to believe.
I want to believe that a man can work a sixty-hour week, spend quality time with his wife and kids, be involved in his community, find time for leisure, and still be an effective disciple of Jesus Christ. The kind of man who prays big prayers and knows God intimately for those prayers. The kind of man who readily leads many others to his Savior and disciples those same people to maturity. I want to believe, but I don’t know any men like that.
I want to believe that it’s possible to drop into a majority of churches in any town in this country and find a thriving community of saints that not only loves God passionately but finds time for each other. And not just talk about community, but a church that meets more than a couple days a week in each other’s homes for meals, talk of Christ, prayer, fellowship, and simple fun. And when the times are not so fun, that this same group of people can find the time to comfort each other. I want to believe, but I don’t know any churches like that.
I want to believe that people who call themselves Christians and live in America could be deliriously happy in the Lord Jesus even if everything they owned was taken away from them. Not just refraining from buying the latest update of the iPod or Prius, but actually losing everything they owned.I want to believe, but it seems impossible to.
I want to believe that the Church of Jesus Christ still takes the Great Commission seriously. A Church made up of selfless people who would crawl over miles of broken glass to save one soul from hell. I want to believe, but it’s hard to do so.
I want to believe that things are getting better and not worse. That churches are vital, not impersonal museums or dog-and-pony shows. That the people I know who are Christians are growing closer to the Lord and more distant from the world, ready to be martyred for the faith if need be. People who love not their own lives, even unto death. I want to believe, but the evidence for that reality is so sparse.
I want to believe that it’s not too late. That the Lord will tarry and we’ll somehow get a reprieve, time enough to wake up and get serious about getting serious. I want to believe, but I also know the darkness is coming when no man can work.
I want to believe! Lord, help my unbelief!