Stable and Unstable Faith
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. – James 5:8, ESV
My wife and I ride mountain bikes a lot. Recently, we rode in the Mcdowells mountains on a 15 mile loop called the Pimberton Trail. It’s labeled one of the best trails according to AZ’s popular Fat Tire Trail guide for Mt Bikers. The problem is that there lot’s of jumping cactus’s called choya’s. These things will really hurt you if you run into them.
I’ve made that mistake early on. Since then I’ve learned a bit more on how to have a miserable day mountain biking in AZ. James says, that when we doubt God, we are unstable. The writer of Hebrews says that it’s impossible to please God if you doubt him. (Heb 11:6). This doesn’t mean that we can never ask questions or struggle with disbelief something in scripture. James is not asking us to check our brains at the door before we try to worship God, but rather he is telling us it’s we will be like a sea tossed around at sea, driven by the wind, unstable and uncertain about everything.
My greatest mistake in life is not believing enough that God is good. When I doubt his goodness as a heavenly father, everything can come apart. Like on the trails in sonoran preserve, I can so easily get distracted when I am buzzing down a mountain, take a look back, and immediatley I become unstable, in the midst of a chuya forest! I must keep my focus on Jesus, I can’t look to the left or to the right, or God forbid behind me, while I am riding. I need to keep my gaze ahead, on the author and perfector of my faith.(Heb 12:1-2). I must remain committed, having a steady confidence that God brought me thus far, by his grace I can carry on. When our faith is unstable, we will not please God. Faith is what the Lord wants, as we believe more and more in Him, he will give us a steadiness and steadfastness in our faith that devil himself won’t shake us from!
1) Unstable faith sounds like this rationalization...
a. Everyone else is doing it
b. God will forgive me
c. It’s not that big of a deal
d. God’s ways are too hard
e. God’s doesn’t care about what I am going through
2) Stable faith sounds like…..
a. I will stand out and live for Jesus
b. I want to honor God with a holy life
c. Every sin is a big deal to God
d. God’s ways are hard but always better
e. God loves me enough to send his son to die on a cross for everyone of my sins!!!
3) Take a minute to pray and ask God to stabilize your faith.