Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Testing of Faith

"Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produced perseverance. And let perseverance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." James 1: 2-4.

This is David. As Ellen's last update explains, the doctors have found no major problems and expect that one way or another, I will be able to speak normally again. =) That being said, hearing that my right vocal cord is not working (and may never work) is never fun news, and it is easy to worry.

I have been reading through the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers in my daily devotions(right now I am in the middle of Numbers). One of the most interesting things about these books is the story of the Israelites refusing to learn the lesson of God's faithfulness. Again and again, the Israelites face challenges (oppression by the Egyptians, lack of food, lack of water, people trying to kill them, etc.). Again and again, the Lord is faithful to help them in these times of crisis. Yet, when the next crisis comes along, the people respond with a lack of trust in God to handle the situation. While God is incredibly patient with them, eventually he must punish them for their lack of faith (Numbers 14). Reading through these passages, it is easy to criticize the Israelites for their lack of faith. Yet in life, it is easy to make the exact same mistake that they did.

In facing our latest trial, it is easy to worry about the worst possible outcomes and wonder how we are going to face such situations. But in the context of my life, such an attitude seems crazy. This is the same God who brought me a wife when I never dated anyone until the age of 21 (and thought I was too shy and nerdy to ever find someone). This is the same God who provided a good job for me in Birmingham, despite our concerns because of a lot of closed job doors in law school. This is the God who miraculously gave us a child after three years of infertility. In retrospect, we can even see why he made us wait three years. And this is the God who provided the wonderful job that I have now clerking for the Supreme Court.

Like the Israelites, God has performed major works in our lives. In the midst of our struggles, God has proven faithful. It would be utter lunacy not to trust him now in this latest trial. Regardless of what happens, God is in control. All he wants right now is for us not to worry: "So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:34. True confidence comes from God--not doctors. And God has been faithful every step of the way.

1 comment:

Paula said...

David, you are such a faithful man of God! I am glad to hear that they did not find anything bad wrong. I am a worrier, myself, but you and Ellen already know that. I know the Lord is pleased with your faithfulness. :) Ellen and Seth are both blessed to have you. I hope you have a wonderful Father's Day! We love y'all, Paula and family