Friday, September 11, 2009

Faithful Fridays - "Living By Faith"

It's Friday again! I'm kind of glad to see Friday roll around! I've had a sick little girl here all week and I'm so glad she's feeling better, not running fever anymore, for the weekend!

I also enjoy participating in Joy's Faithful Fridays and I'm so glad Joy came up with this idea. It helps me to stop and reflect on what God has done and is doing in our lives, even though we get so busy sometimes! If you'd like to share on Faithful Fridays, please grab the Faithful Fridays button and visit Joy's blog and let her know in a comment, so we can all stop by!



While thinking about what I wanted to post for this week, I was just thinking over how much my faith in God really is a major part of my life. I really can't imagine living a day without it....not that I'm loaded with faith or anything like that, because I have a long, long, way to go, but to realize how I totally depend on God's work in my life.

I once heard someone tell this story that is a great example of what faith really is. There was a man at the Grand Canyon who intended to set a record by taking a challenge to walk across a tightrope stretched from one side of the Grand Canyon to the other. Well he did this fairly easily. After watching this, the crowd roared with applause. Next it was asked, "Do you believe this man can now walk across this tightrope pushing this wheelbarrow?" When everyone cheered their approval, he asked, "Okay, then who wants to hop in?" You could have heard a pin drop!

Now I tell you, it's easy to "talk the talk", but when it's put to you like that, it's not quite so easy.....and I'm speaking to myself here too! :) That illustration always stuck with me. Having that kind of faith is tough, but as Christians we are supposed to exercise our faith and make it a lifestyle.



Here's just a little bit of what the Bible has to say about faith:

"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."
Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)

".....Because you have so little faith, I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."
Matthew 17:20 (NIV)

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day- and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing." 2 Timothy 4:7-8 (NIV)

Those verses pretty much let us know that we have to exercise our faith. I suppose it works just like exercising our bodies. We build up our muscles by exercising. It's not something we do every now and then and expect the best results. We work on it a little day by day, and before we know it, we're building up muscles we didn't know we had. I think that's how it works with faith....we exercise our faith...in little bits....trusting God to handle little things throughout our day....and before we know it, we've built our faith muscles up! That's what I want to do....how I want to be....and I realize I have a long way to go!

On a personal note, I thought I'd share a few of the times in my own life that I've had to exercise my faith and honestly I don't know where it came from at the time, but I can tell you that I know these things came to pass because of God and trusting in Him. Although one thing I want to point out is that God's timing is not always our timing, as a matter of fact, nine times out of ten, it isn't! I'm impatient...I want it all NOW! :)

I prayed (along with my mom) that God would prepare the man He would have for me to marry and I honestly just turned that over to Him. I knew God had all of this in the works and I just had to wait on His plans and God led Jason and me to each other (in His timing).



Our home also came to us by faith. Looking back, it's hard to see how all this came to be except by the grace of God and our faith in Him. I remember pouring through magazines and dreaming and then putting faith behind that dream and trusting God. He was so good to provide the means for us to build our home.......just in time for our family.....and we lived in it ever since!



Jason and I were married for seven years before our son, Colt, came into the picture. Now seven years definitely wasn't my timing for waiting for children....I wanted them right away...several of them! :) Even though circumstances weren't looking good, all we could do was put our faith in God and trust Him. Adopting was expensive and looking back, I know it was God opening doors and providing the finances. He gave us a beautiful baby boy....our son, Colt.



During the years to follow, of course I wanted more children. I was very happy and thankful for the son we had been given, but the desire of my heart was for more children...at least one more......and a little girl would be nice.....a brown-eyed girl to be specific. :) And so we prayed....and trusted God more. And ten years later (DEFINITELY not my timing), God gave us a beautiful baby girl....our brown-eyed daughter, Joy. In addition, a test showed that she had a pretty good chance of having Down's Syndrome. The Dr. wanted me to have an amniocentesis to be sure and we wouldn't hear of it, or allow it, because of risks involved. It didn't matter anyway. We trusted God. It was in his hands. I can honestly tell you that after a week or two of being told this news, I never thought of it again. When she was born, I never even thought to ask that question. I knew all was well. God was in charge.



I didn't tell you these things today to build myself up in anyway...because I didn't have a thing to do with it and wouldn't have wanted to do it myself! I just wanted you to know that things haven't always just fallen into place for us, naturally. There were times I wondered why me....why us.....and all I could was pray and trust God. I know I couldn't live a day without God and putting my faith in Him..........and I wouldn't want to! :)

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Please also remember our country in prayer. I'm so concerned about the direction our country is taking and the moral decay....and prayers of repentance are our only hope for healing our country! God's Word makes it clear:

"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)



What better day than today, in remembrance of 9/11, to come together as Christians...as Americans....and lift up our country in prayer! People all over America are gathering (or praying in their homes) between noon and 1:00 p.m. Will you join in lifting up America in prayer?

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I hope you're blessed richly by exercising your faith and living it on a daily basis! And have a great weekend too! :)

Blessings,
Tammy

16 comments:

Juanita said...

This reminds me of the hymnal Living By faith
I care not today what the morrow may bring,
If shadow or sunshine or rain.
The Lord, I know, ruleth o'er everything.
And all of my worry is vain.

Chorus
Living by faith (Yes, living by faith)
In Jesus above (in Jesus above)
Trusting, confiding (trusting, confiding)
In His great love (yes, in His great love)
From all harm safe (safe from all harm)
In His sheltering arm (His sheltering arm)
I'm living by faith (I'm living by faith)
And feel no alarm. (feel no alarm)

Tho' tempests may blow and the storm clouds arise;
Obscuring the brightness of life.
I'm never alarmed at the overcast skies,
The Master looks on at the strife.

I know that He safely will carry me thro'
No matter what evils betied;
Why should I then care, tho' the tempest may blow,
If Jesus walks close to my side.

Thank you so much for sharing this.
Have a blessed day!

Denise said...

Bless you!

XXDEnise

Walking on Sunshine... said...

What a beautiful post and beautiful testimony of someone who has and will continue to live with faith in the Lord leading her!

Thank you for sharing from your heart!

Marjorie (Molly) Smith said...

Beautiful post Tammy, without God in our life, we are nothing. And God does have his own time line, and sadly for America he has given us chances over and over again, when he has had enough he will draw that line and there is nothing we can do.
We must pray for CHANGE, but the right change, the change of heart and turning back to God as our leader.
Have a Blessed Day
Molly

Parsley said...

Love this post! I think we'd enjoy sitting and chatting in real life. LOL

I too prayed for God to prepare me a husband and 'boy howdy' did He deliver.

Faith and the analogy of the wheelbarrow...wow.

arkie said...

Wonderful post!

The Farmers Oldest Daughter said...

What a great post!!!!. I know I also want things NOW. God's timing is perfect and ours isn't and I still have to tell myself that.

Our church is having an Acts 1:8 Celebration beginning next weekend. I wish you could be here to hear all of the missionaries and their testimonies and what God is doing in their lives through their mission work.

We are housing 2 missionaries, one from Nairobi, Kenya and one from our church's mission board.

I am so excited to be a part of this and wish everyone could hear what God is doing.

Have a great weekend!
Maxine

UPON A HILL said...

I am doing a 40 day prayer focus with Chuck Pierce. Today it was about faith also. I think GOD is telling me something, out of the mouth of 2 or more. Your testimony is very powerful. & yes, we need to repent for our land to be healed. Thank you for sharing!

Susan said...

Wonderful testimonies of your faith, Tammy. Glad you joined us in prayer today Noon to 1.
Susan

Blessed Beyond said...

What a beautiful post, Tammy! Thank you so much for sharing! Hope you are having a great weekend!

the primitive country bug said...

Hi Tammy,
What a great post today! I rely on my faith every day as well. God has brought me so close through my struggles, to Him. I guess that's what our trials are supposed to do, bring us closer.
I can't imagine not having Him in my life. Everything might seem hopeless, but it's not because He is HOPE!
I'm glad that Joy is feeling better. Hugs & blessings to you all~ Birgit

Joy ~ Doodlebug ~ said...

Mommy,

I'm glad you did a post!!!! I can always have FAITH that you'll do a Faithful Friday's post!! LOL love you!!!! 8! Bye! Great post!!!

Love, Joy =D

Elle Bee said...

Lovely post Tammy! I noticed that in the hospital picture, the back of the magazine in your bed says "hold on to the moments". What a sweet coincidence! Really enjoy each time I get another glimpse into your life.
Elle
PS Your home is beautiful.

RiverBend Farm said...

You have no idea how I needed to read your post today. Thank you and many more of God's blessings to go out to you.
Berte

Paula said...

Beautiful post. Thank you!

Blessings~
Paula

carolyn@primitive~devotion said...

Hey Tammy! I am late visiting you and reading this, but wow! An awesome post, as usual. So much to think about, and I LOVE the example of the tight-rope walker! I will have to remember that one!

Faith is very important, and I have always considered myself to be very faithful. But would I hop into the wheelbarrow? NO! Something to think on for sure!

I am so grateful & thankful that the ord takes care of me and my family & friends. I too, could not get by without Him.

Have a great week!