Perhaps faith in the face of difficulty and disappointment pleases God simply because it keeps the ones he loves so close to him. In Mark 9:17-27, a distraught father brings his suffering son to Jesus to be healed. Jesus asks the man if he believes his boy can be healed, and the man replies, in desperation, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!" I love this prayer; it's so wonderfully honest. In our darkest times, when we come to the end of ourselves and have tasted loneliness past what we think we're able to bear, we too can cry out to Jesus for help and hope. In resisting the temptation to doubt his goodness toward us, we're brought closer to him.
I've had nights of such loneliness and disappointment that I've wrestled with God and refused to let go. Although I feel wounded, I know he's with me, because Psalm 34:18 says, "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." As I cry out for faith, I come to know his broken heart in ways only the brokenhearted can. After all, God knows what it is to long for something you don't have; he's longed for the affection of his loved ones for centuries.
For Further StudyDownloadable resources to go deeper
- Carolyn Custis James: What It Means to Be a Woman in MinistryeBook Format Available! Author and speaker Carolyn Custis James offers leadership insights for women.