Joining the Unfailing Faith Bible Journaling Study
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Unfailing Faith – How to Have Unshakable Faith during Trials
Everybody hurts. Some it seems more than others. When we fall on hard times, our natural instinct for survival kicks in. Our jobs, relationships, faith – no part of our lives are spared from the feeling of panic and stress we feel in the darkness. It’s hard to rejoice and trust God when you’re knee deep in the muckiness of life.
God, the only one who can make the journey manageable. God has promised to meet all your needs (Philippians 4:19). But, this promise doesn’t mean you get to skip along life and smell the roses 24/7. He has plans for you. Plans that require growth.
As you face the many trials of this life, here are a few things that might help.
Determine the Type of Trial
Understanding the type of trial you’re facing is key to overcoming it. Ask the Lord to reveal His plans, so that you can discern the next step. Pastor Rick Warren describes four common trials that we go through (you can read part 1 and part 2 here)
I’ve found that almost all of my trials can be classified into at least one of them and sometimes all of them. It’s possible that there are other types of trials that aren’t listed here. If you find that you are having trouble identifying the type of trial you are facing bring it to the Lord, and then seek wise biblical counsel.
The Priorities Test
Who will be first in your life? Setting the appropriate priorities in your life is essential for a thriving life as Christians. In order to deal with any trials that face you, God must be and remain your top priority. The Bible is there to help you set priorities and deliver you to eternal life.
The Persistence Test
Will you keep your commitments? Making commitments is a part of life and sticking to them is crucial. Hopefully what you’ve committed to has the right priority (see the priorities test).
The problem is that in today’s hectic world, instead of being fully committed to one or two important things, it’s likely that you’re committed to several things. Break through the noise and make the time to do what you’ve committed to do. This is especially the case when it comes to persistently seeking the Lord, committing to making time to honor and worship Him.
The Pressure Test
Will you depend on yourself, or God when the pressure is on? When you feel pressured, stressed, or desire that you know in your heart is not right, will you give in because it’s easier, feels good, or makes the pain go away at the moment? God is always here for you. Turn to the Lord instead of other people and things.
The People Test
How will you handle disappointment? Pastor Rick Warren says that the most disappointing thing in life is people. That’s because you expect them to be like God. You search for someone to meet a need in your life that only God can meet, and when they fail, you get hurt, angry, frustrated, or depressed.
Even more dangerous is when they succeed. Then they become an idol and sometimes lure you into things that you never imagined you’d do.
The problem isn’t people. It’s your expectation of them. When you expect someone to be your savior, you set yourself up for the emotional rollercoaster that follows.
Which Test Are You Facing Today?
Which of these tests is God using in your life right now to stretch your faith? Once you’ve made this determination, you’ll be able to handle any trial that you’re faced with using the following God-given abilities.
Have Courage – God is with You
Don’t you be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. Yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness. – Isaiah 41:10 WEB
Fears are so different and often extreme. It’s normal to try to avoid them, instead of acknowledging that they exist. The fact is that you don’t need to be afraid. Have you heard the saying that F-E-A-R is “False Evidence Appearing Real”? Not always easy to believe, right? The most important thing to keep in mind as a Christian is that over and over again, through the Holy Bible, God told His children not to be afraid. If you believe, the courage you need will come from God’s powerful promises – He is always with you.
Pray – Seek Discernment, Direction, and Comfort from God
Is any among you suffering? Let him pray. Is any cheerful? Let him sing praises. – James 5:13 WEB
When we go through difficult times, it can be hard to remember to pray for God’s will to be done, not for your will to be done. Sometimes God remains silent for a reason and not because you did anything wrong. It’s simply because He is God and knows what’s best for you.
Read the Word – The Word of God is the sword of the Spirit.
It is the only offensive weapon in your spiritual armor. (Ephesians 6:17)
By reading the Word, you can conquer all our fears and draw on the courage God plans for you to have. There’s no better way to strengthen your spiritual armor.
Endure – Some Trials are for Growth and Maturity
Even though at times it can be hard to believe or understand, the trials you face in life will inevitably lead to joy. For this to happen, you need to patiently trust in God’s plan for you and use adversity to become stronger.
Overcome – Overcome Evil with Good
Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good – Romans 12:21 WEB
Jesus taught His disciples how to respond to those that attempted to make life miserable for them – to overcome evil with good. These instructions pertain to all of God’s children. While responding this way isn’t a natural reaction for most people, they do represent the heart of God.
Trust – Trust that You will be Provided For
But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus – Philippians 4:19 WEB.
God’s intention through the challenges we face is to reinforce our dependence and faith in Him. It’s important that we trust that when we call on the Lord during trying times, He will deliver us. We need to trust Him to work in the ways (and in the amount of time) that He has designed to make the most of our lives.
Rejoice in the Lord always: and again, I say, Rejoice – Philippians 4:4
This is a hard one, but you can rejoice in God and give thanks for what will come as a result of your suffering. As God faithfully pours His grace upon us as we face each fiery trial, we will able to endure hardships and overcome enemies through God’s strength. All reasons to rejoice in him.
When we consistently abide by God’s Word, our unfailing faith will remain strong. His unwavering love for us is never ending – we need only to believe and rejoice in him.
Unfailing Faith Bible Journaling Examples
Here are my Bible journaling entries from the Momentum devotional this month called Unfailing faith.
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
I hope this Bible journaling study encourages you to have unfailing faith during the good times and the hard ones.
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