Secondly, I am personally convinced God hears my prayers, and on occasion alters my circumstances. When this happens I am overcome by joy, and filled with praise. God uses my testimony to encourage others in their faith and draw attention to the glorious working of His power.
I do not possess perfect knowledge to ascertain with certainty when and how God has moved in my life. Yet, when I have pleaded for mercy and witnessed His providential care, I must honor Him with thanksgiving.
Remember, God can exercise divine option within our #2 Pencil Faith framework of certainty. The “law of possibilities”, introduced earlier, teaches us God can stay true to His will, even as He provides a variety of appropriate choices. Do we know with certainty how He has acted and how He has used our actions? Perhaps we do not. But we are certain of His ability to act, and we learn to trust His wisdom as He weaves people, places and things together for His ultimate purposes. If, in the course of making these determinations He considers our requests, hears out questions and changes history, then we can safely assume we may have been the blessed recipients of His grace.
Therefore, we should pray, believing God will hear us and possibly change our circumstances. To think less would be to ignore James’ statement, “You do not have, because you do not ask God.” (James 4:2 NIV) In the asking, however, we should pursue God’s ultimate design for our lives. God is not pleased when we come to Him self-absorbed by our personal agendas (James 4:3).
God permits our contention, and in my opinion, is not displeased with it, as long as we respect His eternal plan, and come in a spirit of obedience. I have seen people collapse under the false assumption any admission of doubt or fear will put their faith in peril. It is true our faith can be destroyed if we don’t move beyond these struggles. But we can also seriously damage our relationship with God if we try to deny them.
Grace is a broad shoulder upon which our tears can pour down. Our Father already knows our pain. It is fruitless to ignore it, and pretend we don’t care. And it is downright dangerous to think for one moment He doesn’t care for us.
Do you think it is safe to ignore our doubts and fears? Are you afraid God will be displeased if you are honest with Him?
Dear God, show me the breadth of grace. In Jesus’ name, Amen.