Life is full of questions, uncertainties, and things that don’t make sense. Often, circumstances slow you down or halt forward motion altogether. One element that is often overlooked in life struggles is the power of faith. Some think faith is a crutch, and others never fully utilize its power. While it isn’t easy, faith is the anchor that helps you weather life’s storms.
Here are five reasons people find faith difficult:
Faith requires relinquishing control
Some structure their lives to feel they are in control. They organize, plan, make lists, watch for potential obstacles, and work to circumvent them before they materialize. But the sense of being in control of your life is merely an illusion. Perhaps you confidently agreed to a project or took a position prior to finding out you have a major health issue. Or maybe you made a large expenditure that almost depleted your savings and then were suddenly hit with a job termination. Circumstances occur that are beyond your control, and when you feel yourself in a tailspin of lost control, you’re in the perfect position to tap into faith and trust God for the outcome. “In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind” (Job 12:10 NIV).
Faith requires trusting the invisible
Many people are doers. When crises come, an attempt to do something to fix or change what is happening feels like progress, but really is only an expenditure of energy. Doubt is the biggest deterrent to faith. Yet doubting is inherent in believing what you can’t see. Fear joins forces with doubt, saying, “This can’t be resolved” or “There is no hope.” Faith says, “Hope exists,” “There is a way through this,” “God is walking with you.” Trusting God involves believing that the One you can’t see or touch is real and working on your behalf. “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1 NIV).
Faith requires seeing with spirit eyes
Eyesight is something you take for granted, until you experience an issue with your vision. Yet many have a vision problem they don’t even recognize. That problem is spiritual blindness. The spiritually blind don’t see their own shortcomings or the need for faith. They trust only what is tangible and rely on others or themselves to make things happen.
Scripture documents numerous times when Jesus healed the blind. The story in Mark 8:22-25 is especially encouraging. Sometimes referred to as the miracle of the second touch, Jesus’ first attempt at healing brought improvement, but his second touch brought about total healing.
Perhaps you are in need of a second touch from Jesus in some area of your life. Tremendous power is available to you through the power of the Holy Spirit. Pray, asking for help and healing, and trust. “For we live by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7 NIV).
Faith requires living in current circumstances without knowing the ultimate outcome
We all experienced situations where we have to trust someone else to diagnose and come up with the best treatment plan for an illness, perform surgery, provide safe passage, relay a message, or repair something. Sometimes, the person we place faith in lets us down. They fail to deliver what they promised or in accordance with our expectations.
What about bigger issues in life, things that seem impossible? Sometimes it feels like God lets us down because He doesn’t answer prayers in the time frame and with the answers we want. Many abandon faith when circumstances are difficult and answers slow in coming. Learning to trust takes practice. But if you employ faith as you wait for solutions, you will experience spiritual growth and peace in your circumstances. “Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]” (James 1:3 AMP).
Faith requires patience and perseverance
Ah, yes, those pesky “p” twins, patience and perseverance. Neither is much fun. Patience denies the desire to have answers right now, to make things happen fast, and to our liking. Perseverance marches on, despite discouragement and difficulty. Faith requires both patience and perseverance to overcome doubt as you wait for healing, resolution, or answers. “For when the way is rough, your patience has a chance to grow” (James 1:3 TLB).