Category Archives: CONFIDENT HOPE

“Faith don’t come in a bushel basket, Missy. It come one step at a time. Decide to TRUST Him for one little thing today, and before you know it, you find out He’s so trustworthy you be putting your whole life in His hands.”
― Lynn Austin, Candle in the Darkness

“Sing a little song of trust,

O my heart!

Sing it just because you must,

As leaves start;

As flowers push their way through dust;

Sing, my heart, because you must.

“Wait not for an eager throng

Bird on bird;

‘Tis the solitary song

That is heard.

Every voice at dawn will start,

Be a nightingale, my heart!

“Sing across the winter snow,

Pierce the cloud;

Sing when mists are drooping low

Clear and loud;

But sing sweetest in the dark;

He who slumbers not will hark.”

“An’ when He hears yo’ sing, He bends down wid a smile on His kin’ face an’ listens mighty keerful, an’ He says, ‘Sing on, chile, I hears, an’ I’s comin’ down to deliber yo’: I’ll tote dat load fer yo’; jest lean hawd on Me and de road will get smoother bime by.”‘

“Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice” Philippians 4:4

REJOICE by Mrs. Charles Cowman

The public domain version of this classic devotional is the unabridged edition of Streams in the Desert.

Believing Is Not About The Outcome

I used to struggle a great deal about this believing business. Mostly because my expectations and outcomes didn’t always match up with what I was believing for.

It is easy to say to someone, “You need to trust God.”

Oh yes, that part is easy!

building trust and believingBut, if our trust is tied to our beliefs for a certain kind of outcome, and then things seem to go haywire?

Then what are we supposed to do?

Was our believing at fault?

Should we have prayed more fervently?

Isn’t my faith supposed to move mountains?

I used to stumble over these questions wondering if there was something faulty with my faith, or my praying, or my believing, until I realized one day that I kept making a very strategic wrong turn in my understanding.

I began to see that if my beliefs were based on my expectations for a certain outcome, and if that was the foundation for my trust, I would always struggle—because my expectations were so often wrong.

I needed a better basis for my trusting.

And then I saw it!

The “wrong turn” I kept making was right here:

Jesus said in John 6:29John 6:29
English: World English Bible - WEB

29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”

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, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

I needed to put my confidence and trust in who Jesus had proved Himself to be, not in what He would do for me—or not do for me.

My trust couldn’t stand on my outcomes.

No, my trust had to be based on who Jesus said He was—period.

The Bible says over and over, “We live by faith, not by sight.” [2 Corinthians 5:72 Corinthians 5:7
English: World English Bible - WEB

7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.

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walk by faithThe reality of this world is that sometimes bad things happen even if all of our faith is in good outcomes.

Therefore, if my faith and trust are to survive the storms of this life, then there will be times when I must trust in what I can’t see.

walking with JesusI must learn to “walk” with stability in the unseen with my trust based solely in the One God sent.

He is my Cornerstone.

If my confidence is in Him, and my trust is built solely on the character of God’s goodness, then no matter what the outcome to my faith, prayers, and believing—my TRUST will stand on a firm foundation.

Seeds for Trust #2:

believing for God's outcome

 

Foundation Stones for Trust

Before we begin our journey through the Psalms we must talk about the foundation stones for trust.

You cannot have a trust that will weather all the storms of life if it is built on the “sand” of what you see and feel.

Your eyes will deceive you and your feelings often shift and change with each passing storm that blows.

Therefore let us address ourselves to some of the basic truths from the inerrant and infallible word of God.

foundation of trustTo start with, the Bible doesn’t say there might be trouble in this world. On the contrary, it assures us that we absolutely will have trouble.

Jesus said, “I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33John 16:33
English: World English Bible - WEB

33 I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.”

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The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy, “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” [3:12]

So, since we know we shall have trials, sorrow, and persecution, and since our life will not be trouble-free, we can’t base our trust on the hope that we should have a painless journey.

Often our trust falters or fails because it is based on the false hope that the promises in God’s word can be manipulated to suit our own wishes. We believe  by praying fervent prayers, or  “claiming” this or that Bible verse for ourselves, or our loved ones, we can have whatever we want.

But no matter how heartfelt those wishes and desires may be, or how sincere our hopes, even in the word of God we must face all of the truth. We must acknowledge that God knows what we don’t, and we must put our TRUST in Him, and His will on any matter. Then our trust can not only weather the storm, it can also flower and flourish in it.

Anyone who reads my blog, knows by now, I love to quote from the works of C. S. Lewis. So, in closing, let me add a few more of his wonderful encouraging words.

Remember, though we struggle against things because we are afraid of them, it is often the other way around—we get afraid because we struggle. Are you struggling; resisting? Don’t you think our Lord says to you, “Peace child, peace. Relax. Let go. Underneath are the Everlasting Arms. Let go, I will catch you. Do you trust me so little?”

— C. S. Lewis

SEEDS FOR TRUST #1:

trust God's love for you

He Speaks To Us In Songs of Deliverance

The Psalms have been songs of deliverance for me more than once. And so I go there, whenever I am struggling with anything—because it is there HE SPEAKS to me.

songs of deliverance

In those sweet songs I find comfort, I find healing, I find wisdom, instruction, and redemption. In those one hundred and fifty passages—I find HOPE!

They are the Bible’s most beloved poetical anthems of praise and glory to God!

It was C. S. Lewis who wrote,

“I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed. It is frustrating to have discovered a new author and not to be able to tell anyone how good he is; to come suddenly, at the turn of the road, upon some mountain valley of unexpected grandeur and then to have to keep silent because the people with you care for it no more than for a tin can in the ditch; to hear a good joke and find no one to share it with. . .

The Scotch catechism says that man’s chief end is ‘to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’ But we shall then know that these are the same thing. Fully to enjoy is to glorify. In commanding us to glorify Him, God is inviting us to enjoy Him.”

― C. S. Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms 

So for as long as it takes, let us journey through this Book of Songs, looking for the reasons why we can TRUST God.

I believe we shall find such beauty growing there, that by the time we are finished, we shall have discovered our own Garden of Eden in it’s pages.

you are my hiding place

And, songs.

That, too!

There will be songs of deliverance, that shall bring with them, all manner of good things. We shall find messages that will bolster our strength and courage, as well as the substance and evidence, for our faith and trust in a God who passionately loves us.

As C S. Lewis encouraged us to do, we shall “complete our enjoyment” by consuming all the beauty we shall surely uncover there.

Come, let’s mosey together down ancient paths laid out for us thousands of years ago, gathering wildflowers from the darker vales of sadness and lament, as well as in the highland meadows with their prospects of hopefulness.

As we refresh ourselves here and there, by pools of still waters, we shall find His messages of love for us. Then, like Lewis we shall also be able to say,

“The most valuable thing the Psalms do for me is to express the same delight in God which made David dance.”   

songs of deliverance