Two-For-One Lessons to Grow Your Faith
There are moments when it seems like everything you know about faith is turned on its head. You know those moments I’m referring to, don’t you? A loved one reveals a character flaw that takes you by surprise; a friend lets you down so big that you’re not sure if friendship is something you ever want to pursue again; or, your child gets a diagnosis that no fever-reducing medicine can touch. We can all probably add to this list from our many life circumstances.
While I’ve certainly encountered my share of big reveals, back-biting, and bedside vigils, I’ve learned a few lessons along the way in this faith journey, of mine. I’d like to share them with you in the hopes that it will help bring you some comforting perspective as you travel along on your own path to deeper faith.
Clear your vision. I don’t know about you, but I seem to have a knack for pointing out others’ flaws, while completely ignoring my own. For example, sometimes, the man who sleeps next to me will do or say something that reminds me that he is on his own faith journey; and it is so different than mine! On those occasions when I feel like I can see his road ahead far more clearly than he can, it does me a world of good to remember the wisdom found in Luke 6:42. “How can you think of saying, ‘Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye?” And all too often, when I get busy clearing my own vision, I find that my husband (or family member) has done the very same thing; all without my help. Imagine that! That’s two for the price of one, right there. Oh yes it is.
Get physical (sort of). In exercise, the experts sometimes talk about a “twofer” – one exercise that hits two different muscle groups. I find that same kind of double benefit when I extend grace to a friend who, by my human way of thinking, doesn’t really deserve it. I’m talking about flexing that Grace Muscle, here. For me, that looks like saying, “We all get confused once in a while.”, when a friend completely misses our coffee date and leaves me hanging out with my scone and coffee for companionship. When I give grace a good workout each day, it becomes easier to do. And, as an added benefit, my faith is increased. I can see, so much more clearly, how often others are giving it to me, too. See? A twofer!
Give it up. Research has proven the medical benefits of prayer. While not many can grasp why that is true, they acknowledge that it is true. I’m learning that anytime I receive news of a diagnosis that is beyond my comprehension, the first most helpful thing I can do is pray. My faith soars when I get still and just give the situation, the person, the diagnosis, all of it, up to God. I always feel a lightening in my soul when I do. I can look back on many a situation and see that praying increased my faith. And it boosts my own health, too! Who couldn’t use more of that kind of two-for-one deal?
These lessons often need repeating. And that’s okay. I’m finding that the more opportunities I have to practice growing my faith, the more I see it happening. And that’s the kind of double benefit that this girl is longing for. How about you?
Missy is a Southern Yankee who loves her husband, children, and devil dogs – in that order. She writes anonymously about the mishaps a’plenty and grace galore over at www.missindeedy.com .
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