Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Folly of Being Double-Minded -- Part 3

Continued from yesterday….

St. James himself knew what it was like to be double-minded. Before Jesus appeared to James after his resurrection, James saw Jesus in purely human terms. For several decades James refused to recognize Jesus’ divinity.  But once James did believe, he became quick to tell the difference between true godliness and insincere religious talk. Later as an elder and leader of the church in Jerusalem, James’ own faith was plain for all to see.

After persecution broke out and Christianity spread throughout the Roman empire, James was the first to pen a letter to the Christians scattered abroad. In his book, James encourages us to demonstrate the reality of our faith through our perseverance in times of testing, through our dependence on God for wisdom, and through our heartfelt desire to grow stronger and stronger in both God’s Word and good deeds.

But we can’t do it alone. I have to submit myself to godly individuals I respect and know I can trust. I have to humble myself and admit when I’m struggling with Peter double-mindedness due to past wounds and present fears. I have to admit when I’m struggling with Jonah double-mindedness, too. You and I cannot do this life on our own. The waves will get us every time.

Where are you at today? What is the need of your heart? What do you need right now more than anything? Courage to keep persevering? Wisdom on how to live in these uncertain economic times? More faith in God’s heart, God’s power, and God’s love for you? Remember, God wants you to ask. He won’t chide you for having needs. He certainly won’t reprimand you. Instead, He will say, “I thought you would never ask. Yes.” Just don’t forget that God often answers us indirectly through the words of wisdom, courage, and faith of other believers.

Thank you, Lord, that you are maker of heaven and earth. All true wisdom comes down from heaven. Your Word. Your Son, Jesus Christ. Your Holy Spirit to fill and guide us. Thank you, Lord, that you offer us forgiveness, healing, courage, wisdom, and strength to persevere no matter what our circumstances are here on earth. Lord, please forgive us for all the times and all the ways we have been double-minded, torn in our allegiance to you. Wash us, cleanse us, fill us, renew us this day. We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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