I am leaving early Monday morning as a part of a World Changers mission trip with our church youth group to Norfolk, Virginia. My husband and my daughters are all going, but my little man is spending the week with his sweet Granny (he is too young to go yet, and not happy about it!)
But I am so excited about going on this trip and anxious to see the amazing ways God is going to work in us, and through us. Since I will not have internet access, I thought it might be fun to republish some older posts, and allow God to speak through them again this week to those who need a fresh Word from Him. So come back every day, and I look forward to having some exciting news to talk about next week when we return. Have a wonderful week!
It was finally here. My favorite time of year, and my favorite place to be. I hopped out of bed with an unusually eager attitude to do my morning exercise. I stepped out the door into the crisp morning, and inhaled a deep breath of salty beach air.
I headed for the soft white sand, and began jogging briskly at the edge of the surf, admiring the vastness of one of God’s most amazing creations. After a short while, the morning sun became exceptionally bright, causing me to squint. It was then that I realized that in my haste to experience the beautiful Carolina surf, I had left my sunglasses behind, and my sensitive eyes were not very appreciative.
Unsuccessfully, I tried to keep my eyes open, but it was just too bright. I thought to myself about the open area around me, and decided it would be safe to go a short distance with my eyes closed completely. Knowing that miles of empty beach lay ahead of me, and that there very few people, if any, at the beach this early in the morning. Therefore, I confidently ran forward with both eyes closed tightly shut.
As I continued running blindly, I was spending time with God in prayer, and a startling thought leaped into my mind – “is this what God means when He tells us to walk by faith and not by sight?”.
I allowed my mind to drift away from my surroundings and focus on this concept. In the case of my morning run, I already knew that there was nothing in my path to bump into. There were no people, dogs, umbrellas or flying frisbees yet, so I felt completely confident running with my eyes closed. However, life does not always have a bump-free pathway for us to run on, but rather is packed full of obstacles, big and small. During this prayer time, I felt God nudging me to recognize whether or not I would be willing to run with my eyes closed through the bumpy patches of life, and solely rely on Him for my confidence, even when I did not know what lay in front of me.
I found myself asking God, “Lord, what things do I need to walk by faith in, and not by sight?”. For the next several minutes, with each exhale of breath, God brought something to mind that I needed to have a stronger faith about. A family member’s chronic illness. A friend’s job search. A damaged relationship. Someone whom I needed to forgive. Raising my children. Marriage. Health concerns. Who would lead our country. The war. The future.
It became crystal clear to me in that moment, that I rarely walk by faith regarding issues of great concern. It seems that when the burdens get heavy, I try to carry them on my own. I fret and worry. I imagine the worst case scenario. I try to determine what I can do to help remedy the problem. I waste time wishing things were different. When what I should be doing, is walking with my eyes closed, and giving God the opportunity to do His work. Worrying will not change a thing, but faith can change anything.
Walking by faith and not by sight, does not mean we need to walk around with our physical eyes closed, but that we need to live with the eyes of our heart open. God wants us to put our faith in Him, believing with full confidence that He will take care of the obstacles, guide us around the problems, and carry us through to the end. The NIV version of 2 Corinthians 5:7 puts it this way, “For we live by faith, not by sight”. We are not commanded to merely walk by faith, but live by faith, each and every day.
If you are like me, I want to not only walk by faith, but run by faith. I want to have the type of faith in Christ that will allow me to close my physical eyes, and see through the eyes of my heart instead, while running full force ahead with no fear.