As I’ve written here, I’m working through the Bible this year studying all the times the word “believe” or “belief” is used and trying to understand God’s perspective on the word He gave me for 2017.
Today I got to the verse that’s been tied to my word for the year for 2 years.
“Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her!” (Luke 1:45)
Do you see how God did that? He’s so amazing! In 2016 my word was fulfill, but I wrote here about how much I struggled with that word. It was a hard year of wrestling with my word, so I thought I might need a do-over.
No, God clearly dropped “believe” into my heart for 2017, but when I went looking for a key verse, there it was. The same verse as last year. I got a new start and a do-over all in one. Woot!
Imagine how excited I was this morning to scroll down in my BibleGateway search to find that today’s verse is MY verse. I mean it’s Elizabeth’s and Mary’s too, but I know they’re sharing it with me. 🙂
I want to testify one more time at how vibrantly alive and active God’s Word is. When I dug into this verse for the hundredth time this morning, I got a whole new message.
We have to believe before God fulfills His promises to us.
I was struck again this morning with how hard that is for a reforming perfectionist. I wouldn’t ever say out loud that I think God needs help. I’m too church-girl for that! My actions, however, reveal what I really believe. I rush ahead into the fulfilling part, trying to make it all happen, when that’s God’s exclusive job. My job is simply in the believing. And patiently waiting.
Belief is confident resting.
That’s not to say belief is passive. It’s resting and watching just like the Israelites did in the dessert. They camped and rested until God moved, and then they followed Him until it was time to camp and rest again.
How does that perspective change things for us? It means that we don’t have to rush around trying to make things happen. We simply respond as Jesus leads. It means that we don’t worry. We trust God to move us into the fulfilling of His will in His perfect timing. It means that we don’t sink into despair when things aren’t going our way. Our hope is firmly in God Himself and not our circumstances.
Even as I write these things I know they’re my biggest challenges. Rest is hard for me and trust has been elusive, but these are the essential elements of belief. I’m seeking God for no less that full belief, complete confidence, and total rest.
Blessings follow belief, and these are the blessings I want for my worn out perfectionist heart and for the people around me to share.
Let’s all use this verse for ourselves. Go ahead, and put your name in it.
“Blessed is ___(your name)___who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her!” (Luke 1:45)
What promises has God whispered into your heart?
How can you move into your believing job today and out of God’s fulfilling job?
O, my soul, believe! O, sister, believe! Let’s move into confident rest together.
Congratulations to the winners of the book giveaways!
Janet (4.6.17 8:32 am) is the winner of Unsinkable Faith by Tracie Miles.
Cynthia Bashaar (4.10.17 5:28 am) is the winner of Out of the Saltshaker by Rebecca Manley Pippert.
I’ve sent emails to both of you, so please reply to me with your mailing address. You’re going to love these books!