“We have to take the first step as though there were no God. It is no use to wait for God to help us, He will not: but immediately we arise we find He is there.”
Faith acts in silence and in blindness, without so much as the necessary fundaments to achieve the said task. It advances as if not knowing, taking advice from hope, and not counsel from despair. Its eyes are fixed on Jesus, and they do not waver to dither in the darkness surrounding.
The invisibilities of God are stark sometimes, as if our Lord had removed his presence from us. Intellectually we know that is not possible. Our Bible knowledge tells us so—and we, of course, choose to believe. Just because God feels absent in the struggle just now doesn’t mean one iota that he is. We just want to feel his steady encouragement, his relieving hand, his reassuring touch.
Advancing in Faith
Faith cannot be faith until we advance. Faith, like love, is action-oriented. It cannot do us any good unless we observe what is good in life via our action in agreement.
As soon as we leap into something, something good, God makes his presence known. We know this by the momentary relief we feel to know that we acted in faith. We allow ourselves access to receive the presence, the confirmation, of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit wants us confident and alive and ready for service. From this first action of obedience comes the spiritual confirmation that we are on track. Our fuel tanks for confidence have been filled above just ether. We have enough now to make the next move.
Advancing in faith needs to happen out of knowledge the first time, and any time we re-engage. If we have no confidence, we move forward as if we had it.
If sheer terror fills our gait we use our minds to calm us down enough to make one step. Then we reflect on that step enough to draw confidence for the next step. One step, one hour at a time, and we receive our necessary momentary relief.
Enjoying the Benefit of Relief
Plain relief should never be underestimated. It is the spiritual peace of knowing God’s presence. All we can take is a moment’s worth. Indeed, it’s all we need. We enjoy its benefits.
Accessing our necessary momentary relief is a key tool of the trade for us who struggle. Struggling is no bad thing; it proves we are human and in need of God. Through faith to step we have our necessary momentary relief.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.