Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Remembering What God has Done

“It’s hard enough to develop a personal relationship with an invisible God, one whose voice I never hear the way I hear a friend’s voice over the phone; it’s even harder to feel close to an unresponsive God.” -- Larry Crabb, Shattered Dreams

“How can I trust God when I can’t even see Him?”  That is a very good question.   After all it is easy to trust our friends and family because we see them and have conversations with them.  We get hugs from our parents, help from out siblings, and words of encouragement from our friends.  When was the last time you received any of this from God?  If God hugs us we don’t feel it, we can’t see God if reaches down to help us, and we don’t hear God speaking to us.  
Let’s face it, it can be very hard to trust God.  God is an invisible Spirit whom we cannot see.  That does not mean that He doesn’t know us and care about us.  What it means is that it is hard for us to measure exactly what God has been doing in our lives.  I wish  that I could give you a magical formula that will make trusting God happen, but I cannot.  Trusting God is something that we have to work on, and hopefully, over time, our trust in God becomes more and more secure.
I may not be able to give you a magic formula, but I can tell you how one man of faith increased his trust in God.  Actually, at the time this man of faith was just a boy, getting ready to take on the biggest challenge of his life.   
But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God." And David said, "The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." And Saul said to David, "Go, and the LORD be with you!"  (1 Samuel 17:34-37; ESV)
Young David was prepared to meet the giant Goliath, a battle tested fighting man.  Why did David have such trust in God? What made David believe that God would deliver him from the giant?  David recalled how God helped him defeat both lions and bears as he took care of sheep.  Since David could recall God helping him in the past, David was confident that God would help him with Goliath.
The same is true for us.  If we are going to trust God we have to remember the times God has helped us in the past.  As I sit here and write I can think of times that God has kept me safe during dangerous situations, how He has given me the words to say as I preached,  and how He has helped me see the solution to the problem I was facing.  When we come up on a “Goliath,” it is important think about how God has been there in the past.  When we do that, it will become easier to trust God, no matter what lays ahead of us

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