I smile as I think of you, my sisters serving in different ministries on different parts of the globe. You are caring for children, cooking, cleaning, teaching, discipling, leading Bible studies, and supporting your husbands. You are amazing.
I know Paul was describing you when he said, “We always thank God for all of you…We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thess. 1:3) Our service is motivated by faith, hope, and love, but I have to tell you sisters, my faith is flagging before the new challenge I’m facing.
Three years ago my husband and I started the biggest faith adventure of our lives. As if working 8 years in the Middle East wasn’t challenging enough, the Lord asked us to leave the comfortable fellowship we were a part of and start a new church with one other couple.
We had great faith expectations, but none of us had the slightest idea what we were getting ourselves into!
The first year almost no locals came to our meetings. We spent most Sundays looking at that one couple sitting across from us in our living room. By God’s grace, we kept going, and now three years later, we have a close knit team of 4 families, two local families, and a growing community of contacts that visit our fellowship.
We are standing on the brink of another challenge. We need to rent a public meeting place for our church. The obstacles include fundraising and getting legal permission from the government. Although I’ve seen God do many great things in the past, once again I find my faith faltering.
Do you ever feel your faith crumbling when you face challenges like these?
- Cross-cultural adaptation
- Language learning
- People who are closed to the gospel
- Husbands on the verge of burn-out
- Struggling Children
- Financial issues
Any time we face challenges, doubt comes creeping in. “You won’t be able to raise the money.” “Your kids are not thriving here.” “That friend you’re praying for will never place her faith in Christ.” I need God to renew my faith each day, so I’m going to take two baby steps:
1. Ask God to increase my faith.
I love the prayer in Mark 9: “I believe! Help my unbelief!” I can so relate. Lately I’ve been asking God to increase my faith, and He’s answering me! It’s a no-brainer, but I don’t always think to pray for more faith.
2. Keep Reading God’s Word.
Romans says that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Nothing renews my mind like God’s Word, so I’m sticking with it. I’m going to read it, memorize it, and proclaim it. I’m going to stand on it and pray it.
Whatever faith challenge you are facing, dear sister, will you joing me in continuing to walk forward? If you like, share your challenge in the comment box, so we can pray for each other.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)