“This God – his way is perfect;
the word of the LORD proves true;
he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
For who is God, but the LORD?
And who is a rock, except our God?”
Recently I had a big struggle with faith. It just seemed like everywhere I looked, I could only see messy, unresolved circumstances instead of decisive God victories. I suddenly felt worn and desperately wanted to see good win. It wasn’t that I didn’t think my God was able to…I just couldn’t understand why He was allowing affliction to continue for a length of time that felt unnecessary.
I had an open dialogue with God, but truth just wasn’t settling in…perhaps because I kept refusing to let go of my confusion. Then He led me to Hebrews 11. That powerful chapter detailing the faith of generations. Verse 1 is what began working its way into my heart: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
The assurance of things hoped for.
The conviction of things not seen.
This is faith. This level of confidence. Of surety.
In the same way that I am assured of my salvation, steady in the conviction that Jesus’ sacrifice and resurrection are enough to cover my sins and cleanse me from all unrighteousness, confident that I will not lose this – in that same way, I must be assured that my God is good and that He wins all victories decisively. I must be steady in the conviction that His power is unmatched and His way is perfect. His timing flawless. His plans – which may look far different from our own – filled with grace and glory and goodness.
Coming out of that list in Hebrews 11 of people who displayed such great faith in God, we see this command:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight,
and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,
despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of God.”
We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. As I reflected on this, I got this picture in my mind of these brothers and sisters in Christ telling me to press on. Calling for me to hold on; cling to Christ; keep believing; keep praying persistently and with bold, beautiful faith; keep trusting; keep running – and never, never stop.
They’re telling us it’s worth it. They’re telling us that our God’s got this, that His plan is set and He’s putting all the pieces in place for good to win and for His glory to shine in and through our lives brilliantly.
So let us press on. Let us run this race with endurance, with the steady assurance of things hoped for and the conviction of things not seen.
I think it will be hard for people to see because we live in a fallen world. It’s takes less work to believe in the tangible, even if there is more POWER in the unseen spirit realm. Armoring up with Eph 6:10-18 is a really good thing!