My good friend shared a story with me about her sister that had passed away years ago from cancer. She had asked her sister why her Christian life was so real and such a joy to her, and how could she find it so natural and be so unafraid to share her love of Jesus with anyone? Her sister answered that when she finally started living as if the Bible were true, her Christian life was transformed.
A sobering thought, a somewhat frightening question… do I live as if the Bible is true? I would be embarrassed if I said “no”, so I’ll be completely honest and tell you that I sometimes live as if the Bible were not true. How so? Because I am often like the double-minded person described in James chapter 1, verse 6-8: “But he must ask in faith, without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. for that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” Sometimes I think,
“IF” is the operative word here. We can accomplish this or that, “IF” things work out as planned or “IF” what we have been told is true. What would my Christian life look like “if” I lived it as if the Bible were true? Can I say unequivocally that I am a Christian if I have doubts? Does the Bible say, “I can do all things through Christ “if” He strengthens me” ? I know God can do anything, I know He can! But if I doubt, then, do I dare say that I am in effect, calling God a liar? God cannot lie! And as I write these words and think about them, I am wondering if I am as good of a Christian as I like to think I am. Sobering and convicting indeed!
Without a doubt, I know when I get to heaven, I will look back on my life and smack myself on the forehead and say, “I could of had a V-8!” (“Oh, Joy… ye of so little faith!” Envision Jesus here, shaking his head and sighing…) I could have lived the most joyous, love-filled, happy, satisfied, content, stress-less, anxiety-absent, excited life “IF” I had believed that everything in the Bible was true! I could have lived my daily life carefree, and full of JOY! I could have had unbounded courage, boldness, trust and confidence! I would have recognized trials for what they were — times of instruction for my own growth — and not taken them as an affront to my security and/or comfort. I could have been content in all things! I could have met each day, each moment with such delight and happiness, knowing that “…God causes all things to work together for good to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28. Am I called according to God’s purpose? Yes! Now I need to live like it.
I need to make a change in my life. I need to take the Bible at face value and believe what is written on those pages. I need to once again be reminded as to why my name is Joy. “… and you will know the truth and the truth will make you free!” John 8:32. God’s truth will set me free from sin, doubt, and all those other niggling issues that I struggle with.
Moment by moment, step by step… no matter the problem, whatever the event, I simply must not waste any more of my days by being tossed about by the winds of doubt and worry. I need to remember that, “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us reJOYce and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24