The author uses a person’s general life story as an illustration of how the conviction of the truth of God can work in the heart of an individual. Speaking of the reality of faith and unbelief as seen in this man’s life, and in the Church at large. The object of this article is to encourage sincere and honest faith, denying the ways of this world and the religious status quo as found around us.
Do You Stagger With Believing The Promises and Commandments of God? What To Do When Faith Is Small
Lessons Of Faith and Consecration From The Story Of The Life Of A Christian
What Do You Do When You Find Your Spirit Laughing at the Promises, Or Commandments of God, Believing They’re Impossible?
The grace of God was at work in the heart of a certain man since his childhood. So much so, that later he testified that some of his very earliest memories were that of the convicting presence of the Holy Spirit, as He (The Holy Spirit) endeavored to direct the youth into the knowledge and conviction of what was wrong, and what was right, and of his need for a savior. As it seems that all people do to one degree or another this youth resisted the grace of God, following the pattern of pride, fear, and self-centeredness, all of which sprang forth from the unbelief in his heart. But the One who has been termed the Hound Dog Of Heaven never forsook wooing this man (Then still a youth) to Himself. He (The Holy Spirit) was there all the time. Tenderly, patiently, determinedly drawing this youth to Himself, to understand the fear of the Lord, and to direct the youth into the love of God which can only be known through the acceptance and obedience of the gospel of the Lord Yeshua, the Messiah.
The spirit of this world tugged very hard at the heart of this youth, endeavoring to draw him into the carnal practices that spring forth from unbelief: Anger, bitterness, cruelness, impatience, dirty talking, sexual sin, and numerous other self-willed and rebellious actions. Yet, in and through all the good and bad of his life the Holy One was there, convicting and tugging at the heart of this youth, enticing and instructing him to believe, to serve the truth and reject the lie. The circumstances of life (Many of which were negative in nature, as they inevitably are) took this youth from his home state and transported him to a rural place in another state, where he began to attend a Bible teaching Church. As he did the words of the Lord through the preaching of the minister were anointed to him. He understood them clearly, and they brought very great conviction of sin (Sin is the transgression of God’s laws, the outcome of the basic problem of unbelief) in his life. His carnal nature fought against the idea of him attending the Church services, and of him considering the words of the Scripture, but his heart was drawn by the grace of God that was at work in that Church, and in the preaching of the Word. After an extended period of mental deliberation as to the pros and cons of following Messiah, this youth decisively determined to follow the prompting of the Word of God which had been coming to him through the preaching on Sunday mornings and make a public statement of his acknowledgment of the truth of God, the faith of Yeshua the Messiah. Thereby aligning himself publicly with, and for, the gospel, and person of the Lord Yeshua. (Yeshua being the Hebrew name for the person most English speaking people call Jesus)
The years passed, as they do for all, and this man left his youth behind him. Life then placed upon him the mantle of manhood with all of its blessings, burdens, and temptations. He ever endeavored to practice those things that gave space to the grace of God to be active and prominent in his life. However, he would have ever been the first to admit that he never felt entirely successful at this, that all of his efforts to respond to God’s grace were at best imperfect. None the less, he kept his face pointed toward the God of heaven, through the face of our Lord Yeshua, the Messiah, as revealed to Him through the Scriptures, prayer, and the fellowship of the Church.
Right from the beginning of His public acceptance of the person and way of Messiah he began to perceive that his surrendering to the grace of God had the propensity to estrange him from others who, from all appearances were either blind, or in rebellion to the grace of God, and therefore did not answer the conviction of the Holy Spirit to obey God’s commandments and promises. This separation happened not only in regard to those that openly disavowed the ways of Messiah, but more often with those that claimed the testimony of Yeshua. This was ever a constant pain of heart, and he struggled with this, not wishing to be in any sense separate, but wanting to found in the core of what was happening with the people of God. IE, the Church. None the less, there were very often points of conviction of understanding and sin that kept him, to one degree or another estranged from the people of God. Sometimes they held him at arm’s length, other times he held them at arm’s length, not wanting to learn what he perceived as the disobedient and carnal ways that he found practiced among the people of God.
As the years carried him to his mid-thirties, and after basically twenty years of the dealings of the Holy Spirit this man began more than ever to find himself caught betwixt the conviction of the Word of God, and the practices of the Church. He had since his youth been what might be called a “Church Boy”, having had the testimony of faithful and continual involvement in the Church’s services and programs. Beyond that, from his youth he had endeavored to honor elder-ship and to follow its lead, having first learned this lesson as a young child from his father, and then clearly seeing it taught and commanded in the Scriptures. So there he was, thirty-five years old, experiencing exceeding turmoil of heart because the conviction of God which convinced him of the Scriptures, yet at the very same time the leadership of the Church insisted on the practice of their traditions in place of the Scriptures. He was caught between two loyalties. Loyalty to the Church, which spiritually speaking was his mother, and Yehovah, (Yehovah is the ancient Jewish name for the eternal triune God) who was the father of his regenerated spirit. He began to understand with far greater clarity than ever before the words of our Lord Yeshua, “No one can serve two masters” Can a man follow two leaders, two masters? Each leading in different directions? At a particular time, after an intense and lengthy struggle between what he recognized as the difference between God’s law and the Church’s traditional teaching, he came to himself, and had a conversation with himself. It went basically like this: “Look, you are not a youth any more. You are now thirty five years old, you need to grow up and face the reality that your leaders, even those that have in various ways been like fathers to you have none the less in numerous ways taught you lies, and they even now expect you to follow their lies (traditions) rather than the truth of God. So which is it going to be boy? Will you play the man and follow God, or will you knuckle under, ignoring the testimony of the Scripture that you are convinced of, and follow the ways of men?” That was a life changing moment for the man. For he decided that day that he would endeavor to do, and speak the truth as the Lord enlightened, and enabled him.
Another twenty years past. Years adorned with many spiritual insights, which were as jewels in a crown. Also he experienced in his life points of misunderstanding, rejection, bad mouthing, questioning, mocking and even outright persecution. The heart of this man often asked of God, “What good is my life? Has not the bulk of my life been spent in vain? For my heart has been persuaded that You have purpose in me, and that it is You that has revealed truth to me, but what good has it done, for nearly all men reject me, and those that don’t out right reject me seem to not be able to find power in themselves to align themselves heartily with the truth?” Yet truthfully, as the years had passed the sphere of his life’s affect upon others had increased, although still exceedingly smaller than the vision of his heart that he had for so long believed was from God.
Then One Day
Then one day, in a moment of total surprise. For this man had seen throughout the course of his life that the conviction of the Holy One could, and would come at moments of total and complete surprise. The Holy Spirit had always had a way of convincing this man of His omnipresent nature by causing His conviction to show up when least expected. Then it happened. While watching a Christian movie the Scripture was read by one actor to another, and it said, “Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desire of thine hearth. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and they judgment as the noon day.” (Psalms 37:4-6 KJV) Without thinking, completely spontaneously, upon hearing these words the man laughed, and not just a little. It came from deep within. Then the conviction of the Holy Spirit came to the man. “Why do you laugh at the promise of God to you?” And the man laughed again, and answered, “It is because I have endeavored to do righteousness, but I have not seen that righteousness accepted and honored so that it can shine forth as the light. For years I have endeavored to follow the judgments of Your Word, and my actions have not been vindicated, but rather time, and time again they have caused me hardships, rejections, mockings, and persecutions.” Where O Lord is the completion of Your promises as stated in this verse.” Then, as had been a fairly common practice of the Holy Spirit in this man’s life, in the night hours, in his sleeping hours, clarity of understanding of God’s words and ways came to him.
What To Do When Your Heart Laughs At God’s Promises and Laws Because Of Your Unbelief
- Agree with the Holy Spirit’s conviction of your sin of unbelief, and admit your failure. Beyond that, ask forgiveness from the Lord for your unbelief, which in effect calls God a liar.
- Realize and accept that the gospel offers more than just forgiveness of sin. It offers the empowerment of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to the Christian, as the Christian exercises faith to rise above sin. Meaning this: Our behavior can change—we can put on Christ in attitude and action—we can increase in godliness in our lives, even as we are in this world.
- Supported by prayer, the meditation of the Scripture, and the instruction and encouragement of others receive the grace of God. Surrender to His favor as ministered to you by the Holy Spirit. Purpose to be strong in it. Allow yourself to deny self, and the multitude of ways self desires to rule you, and align your every word, every thought, and every action to conformity with God’s known will. Thus, allowing the striving of personal agenda, and power of self to cease, and allowing the peace of God to reign in your life.
- Wait on Him. Continue to wait on Him. Keep on waiting on Him. Allow your heart to be encouraged by His presence, and see Him bring it to pass. For it is not by the might nor the righteousness, or the genius of men, but by the Spirit of the living God that His promises are brought to completion in our lives. Amen
Gregory A DeHart
An American Watchman,
To get more out of this article take time to consider these Bible verses: Gen 17:17, Gen 18:12-15, Eph 1:1-14, Jh 3:1-10, Jh 16: 7-15, Mat 15:1-14, Mk 7:1-16, Phil 1:7&17, Matt 6:24, 2 Tim 2:15-16, 2 Tim 3: 10-17, 1 Jh 1:9, 1 Jh 5:10, Ro 8:37, Ro 5:17, 2 Tim 2:1, Ps 1:1-8, Phil 3:7-11, Prov 3:5, Ps 27:14, Ps 37:1-8