On Faith and Hope Deferred

I don’t understand faith. Yes, I know that if you have the faith a mustard seed, you can move a mountain. I understand that faith requires action, and that faith gives you the grace to make things happen…whatever that means. But, the problem I have with faith, comes from its very nature.

In order for faith to work, you have to believe with your heart, that the thing you are believing for will happen. This leaves no room for you to hold on, and protect your heart, should it not happen. Then, it also requires you to put it into action your belief. So, you are believing for something, and you put those things in action, and then…what happens if whatever you are believing for, doesn’t happen? Then you are crushed. And there is no way to avoid this crushing blow, because faith requires your genuine belief.

Take, for example, the couple who believes God will give them a baby. They believe in their hearts that they will conceive. They take…ahem…action. They may even tell their friends and family that they are believing for a baby. They may even set up a room the baby, and even buy furniture for their…”faith baby.”  The months and years go by…no baby.

What of the cancer patient who believes that God will heal them? They make positive confessions, and their families believe with them. They plan for a long a prosperous life, and reject the doctors’ increasingly distressing reports. “I’m believing for healing,” they say. Then, the healing doesn’t come, and the family mourns at the gravesite. “But, we believed,” they say.

What of the couple facing financial ruin? They pray for help, and believe God is going to provide the help they need. They make calls, searching far and wide pursuing every possible avenue to stay afloat. But, in the end, they still lose everything. And, as they drive away from their foreclosed home, they say, “But we believed.”

In these cases, how do you protect your heart from crushing disappointment?  Holding any part back, is not genuine faith. But, then it becomes hope deferred making the heart sick. I have never understood this part of faith. It is dangerous ground to question the Almighty, but after living a lifestyle of faith, my heart hurts from all of this up and down.


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