30 March, 2018

You Don't Have to Understand to Believe

A few weeks ago I was reading in Jeremiah, and it didn’t make sense at all. I wanted to know why God did what He did, and how that fit with His character of love and mercy. I was frustrated because I didn’t have answers.

I’d been thinking about Job and how he said he’d trust God, even if God destroyed Him. (Job 13:15) Job didn’t know why everything was taken away from him, or that it would all be restored in the end. Through the whole experience, the Bible says he did not sin. (Job 1:22) But later in the book, God rebukes Job for thinking to understand Him, the Most High. It seems Job was doing his best, and God comes along and humbles him in the dust.  It's always mystified me.

I was also reading a fictionalized account of the story of Noah. What impressed me throughout the story was Noah’s obedience to God despite the fact that he didn’t understand. The story of the flood is familiar to us, but it didn't make sense to Noah. He hadn’t seen rain before. He didn’t know how it was logistically possible to live with all the animals on a boat. And, he had a hundred years of building in faith before he saw any evidence. But he did it anyway. 

One of my favourite passages in the book said:

‘It’s always hard to follow the Ancient One. He doesn’t offer an easy path. I think He tests us.’

‘What do you mean?’

‘I mean anyone would follow a god who is always good to him, who is always there. But the Ancient One wants men and women who will serve Him when they feel dry as dust in their hearts, when they’ve cried out, yet the heavens are silent. Those who feel as alone as is possible for a human being to feel, but after all of that, still love God – they are the followers the Ancient One seeks. - Heart of a Lion, p88-89

Somehow all those moments came together, and I realized it was a rebuke for me. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to understand God or the Bible, but I was placing my belief on it. I was trying to understand God so that I could believe He was there. I was trying to learn facts about the Bible and history and science so I could prove to others God is real. I was trying to reduce God to an explanation. 

But the truth is if I could understand and explain God, He wouldn’t be, couldn’t be, God.

It’s not a prop for ignorance. It’s good to be able to defend what we believe. There’s point in learning and trying to understand the Bible, even complex parts. But I felt God rebuke me. You don’t have to understand to believe. Job didn’t understand, but he believed. Noah didn’t understand, but He obeyed. Abraham, Mary, Peter – they didn’t understand, but they believed and obeyed in faith. 

Since then, I’m seeing or hearing about faith everywhere. It was faith that held these men of the Bible in obedience even when it didn’t make any sense. It was faith that kept them hoping and believing. Faith is our evidence; the proof we have. Even if it’s dark in every direction, faith gives us the confidence to say, 

I don’t know what You’re doing, but I know Who You are. - Who You Are, JJ Heller

19 March, 2018

God is Always There & Hello!

Sometimes your hair is dirty, and your eyes squinty, and the sunset faded before you could get out there with a camera, and you’re actually cold because autumn in on its way. But you laugh anyway because God is right there in the little everyday things. He created smiles and sunsets and shirts that make you feel happy.  

Sometimes you feel down, and life seems overwhelming, and even things that are considered normal stress you out, and you feel like you’re living in a fog because even thinking takes effort. But you learn anyway because God is right there even when it doesn’t feel like it. He promised pain won’t last, and goodness and mercy for every day of your life.

Sometimes you feel ordinary, and everyone seems to be able to do life better than you, and look prettier, and write better, and reflect Jesus more.  But you share anyway because God is right there revealing Himself. He whispered that anyone can be used of Him, and no one is mediocre because He hand designed every facet of us all for a specific purpose.

Sometimes life is good, and sometimes it feels terrible. But you keep going anyway because God is there during great times, and hard times, and exciting times, and depressing times, and  shameful times, and ordinary times. And the truth is, He’s always going to be.


Hello people! It’s been a while since I appeared here, and I’ve been missing it. I guess the above paragraphs are a brief summary of my life lately: I was down and too focused on myself to think about blogging; I was caught in the trap of thinking I had nothing valuable to share. But God was there, and life is good. He still is there, and I’m learning to laugh. I feel like a big lesson God’s been bringing to my attention during this time is faith – the importance of faith, the relevance of faith, what faith even is. I’m planning to share about that next!

Seriously though, tell me how your life is going! Anything new or exciting happening? And if you’ve been feeling down or alone too, please know that God is there and you are so loved. Feel free to share (blog.applesofgold@gmail.com) too, because I’d love to support you in whatever way I can. Stay strong, friends. I pray for you all!