Faith is an intensely personal matter. In many respects it is no one else's business. Faith is a matter between each one of us and God. What we believe, how much we believe and when we believe are all earmarks of our personal relationship with God and not things we hang out on a clothesline for everyone to scrutinize, judge, admire or criticize.
What happens between our heart and God is incredibly confidential. It has to be or else what takes place in our heart becomes a spectacle and for show. How we manifest our faith is on display for all to see but the details of what goes on in our heart and mind is between us and God.
We all struggle at times with setbacks, problems and situations that arise in our lives. We all have times when we get distracted or tricked into believing we can handle things on our own. Most of us have wandered into the wilderness only to question how we ended up in such a desolate place.
I know by experience what it is like to look as if everything is beautiful in one's life but in reality it is just the opposite. I know what it means to appear as if one has it all together spiritually but in reality there is confusion, turmoil, pain or doubt.
Whether relentless unpleasant situations, seemingly unending pain, fatigue or following the desires of the flesh; if we don't watch out, we will end up as the prodigal son alone and destitute. Jesus did not use the parable of the prodigal son only to show the love and forgiveness of the father, but to show how easy it is to leave what is good for that which is totally contrary to the truth.
One of the most amazing aspects of what happened in the time leading up to and including the crucifixion of Jesus is the fact that despite torture and pain unknown by any man, Jesus NEVER complained or allowed what was happening to Him to rip apart His relationship with God or justify ungodly behavior. Jesus never cried out it hurts or demanded God do something about His situation.
Even when Jesus was hanging on the cross with His physical life literally draining out of Him, He never became bitter, depressed or judgmental toward those who had inflicted such agony upon Him. To the contrary, Jesus asked the Father to forgive them because they knew not what they did.
The two enemies to our relationship with God are pressure and pleasure. Ongoing and intense financial, physical, family, job or emotional pressure seeks to squeeze the very life out of our relationship with God. The lust of the flesh and the pride of life seek to entice and seduce us away from God.
We must do whatever it takes to establish, maintain and restore our fellowship and relationship with God within our hearts and minds. As long as we do not give up or give in to the pressures or pleasures afflicting us, we can use these things to build up and edify that which should be the most important thing in our lives—our personal faith in God.
Thank you and Blessings 2 You!
[quote]We must do whatever it takes to establish, maintain and restore our fellowship and relationship with God within our hearts and minds.[/quote]
What more can I add! Well said.