Strong and Stable

[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 1:6-8)

Do you know anyone who changes their mind all the time? They can never be nailed down on a
decision. Maybe they are anxious because they fear the consequences of making the wrong
choice. Do you ever feel that way?

God says in our verses for today that that is what it’s like when we doubt God. We are “double-minded”.  We can’t decide how we feel about him. Do you think that honors him? Of course not.

How do you think your parents would feel if you constantly were worried about whether
they would provide for you or not? For example, if got out of bed every morning, came to the
breakfast table, and had a look of fear in your eyes because you thought they were not going to
provide food to eat. (Some families are very poor like this in our country but hopefully this is
not the case in our churches because we are called to take care of each other.) Would that honor
your parents if you had serious doubts about their provision for you? Other than them thinking
that you were a bit odd, they might be annoyed that you didn’t believe they would feed you
breakfast each morning. That would harm your relationship with your parents and cause a riff
that might be difficult to undo.

Faith in God, like faith in your parents provision, honors God. If you persist in not
believing in his grace towards you, that harms your relationship with him and he may withhold
himself from you until you begin to trust him and repent of your unbelief. James is calling
Christians to lay down their doubts and press into faith in God. Doubt will make us miserable in
the end and faith will enable a right relationship with God where God loves to give everything to
us that we need.

Read Psalm 1

  • There is something really strong and stable in this passage of scripture. What is it?
  • Why is the tree stable? (Planted by the river.)
  • How can we be “planted by the river?” How does that relate to us having faith and not doubting?

Our Father, thank you that you have proven faithful and that we can trust you. Banish from our
hearts and minds the temptation to doubt your goodness. We know that you are our Father who
loves to give us what we need in your perfect timing. Help us to remember this when it seems
like our world is collapsing around us. Help us press into deeper faith in you. In Jesus’ name,