3 Stages of Faith
Recently, God taught me a lesson about faith. Iíve been reflecting on this lesson ever since and Iíve been blessed by it. Iím being encouraged as I face lifeís struggles.
Faith has three stages. For the sake of being specific, let me use a very basic human need (of course, this applies to whatever need or problem a person may face).
1. Will God feed me?
2. God will feed me.
3. God is feeding me.
The first stage, I just realized, is not faith at all. haha.. The person is in doubt. He is so hungry and questions if God will feed him. His focus is on his rumbling stomach and wonders why God isnít doing anything to improve his condition. This is the kind of person who, after experiencing trouble, does all he can with all his strength, with all his knowledge, with all his talent and realizes that it is not enough. So he then turns to God. God is his last option.
The second stage is man starting to depend on God. He knows and he believes that despite the hunger he is feeling, God will feed him. God knows his condition and will not abandon him. The person is thinking that it's only a matter of time before he receives God's blessings. Iím not saying this is all bad, but for me, it seems like the focus is more on what God can do and not AT God.
In the third stage, the focus is now on God and not on the hunger. The person realizes that even though he is hungry, God was with him the whole time. The difference between the second and third stage is that in the second stage, the person is so focus on his hunger and not God, that he cannot see God's simple joys and blessings that he is having at that very moment. Another very important thing to note is, since the focus is now on God, one should ask himself: Who is God in my life? I mean, if the God I serve is so powerful, so loving, so merciful, so gracious ... what kind of God would He turn out to be if I go hungry?
I've experienced the third stage recently. I was overwhelmed by our financial situation that I started to fear. How will I provide for my family? Will there be any food left in the coming days? How will I buy milk and diapers for my baby? I was thinking this thoughts around 5:30 AM, wife and daughter still asleep, sitting by the table, hands covering my face. And then it hit me. My focus was on my problems instead of God! Would God allow His children, my family, to go hungry? NEVER!
God is feeding me. I am not feeding myself. I am not feeding my family. God is feeding me and my family. God uses my work, other people, other blessings to feed me. God is feeding me and my family. After realizing that, i know everything would be ok. I know my God is so powerful, so loving, so merciful and so gracious.
Removing my hands from my eyes i saw food in the table. While we were asleep, a church member came to our house, opened the gate (which i forgot to lock), and left the food in the table. I didn't notice it before while I was having my moment with God. I was reminded of a verse I spoke of a few Sundays before. Psalm 127:2 "... For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep". While I was asleep, God is feeding me.
Praise the Lord!