While you wait, do your spiritual muscles grow bigger and stronger or do they grow flaccid and atrophied?
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Waiting always presents me with a spiritual choice-point. Let me suggest some habits of unfaith that cause waiting to be a time of increasing weakness rather than of building strength. These are bad habits that all of us are tempted to give way to. Giving way to doubt. It is tempting, in the frustration of waiting, to actually begin to believe that you are smarter than God.
Giving way to anger. It will feel that you are being wronged, and when it does, it seems right to be angry. No, your anger is actually anger with the One who is in control of those people and those circumstances.
You are actually giving way to thinking that you have been wronged by God. Giving way to discouragement.
You Are Not the Author of Your Story
This kind of meditation makes me feel that my life is out of control. And I am able to think my life is out of control because I have forgotten God's wise and gracious contol over very part of my existence.
Rather than my heart being filled with joy, my heart gets flooded with worry and dread. Free mental time is spent considering my dark future, with all the resulting discouragement that will always follow. Giving way to envy.
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Here is the logic: if God really loves you as much as he loves that other guy, you would have what the other guy has. Envy is about feeling forgotten and forsaken, coupled with a craving to have what your neighbor enjoys.
Giving way to inactivity. The result of giving way to all of these things is inactivity.
ARE YOU STRENGTHENING YOUR SPIRITUAL MUSCLES?
Sadly, this is the course that many people take as they wait. I need to work out more. My spiritual muscles are turning to mush! When you go to the gym, you use equipment that provides resistance to your movements.
As we face struggles and hardships in life, we are forced to dig deeper, seek harder, and trust God like never before. What pain … what struggle. And in that moment, Martha was given a chance to build her spiritual strength.
Do you believe this? But she was about to dig even deeper and achieve a new level of faith. But throughout the whole ordeal, Jesus never let Martha off the hook.