The Bottom Line

The last few years have been a roller coaster of shocking events, life-shaking realizations and major adjustments. Some moments have been very traumatizing; some amazingly wonderful. It’s hard to articulate the emotions (and sometimes lack of) as I have traveled this varied and unusual way. Needless to say, it’s been a journey of miracles.

I always thought miracles would be warm, fuzzy and enjoyable. Boy was I wrong! Miracles are shaking, disturbing at times and even a little frightening. I guess it’s hard to even reach a miracle without a good measure of anxiety and angst. After all, what need is there for a miracle when all is well?

One thing I have come to realize, throughout this Christian journey but especially in these last 10 years, is that at the core of it all the main issue is always belief…or lack of. It’s the bottom line.  There is always someone who can give you a pep talk about perseverance and the reward of not giving up. There are motivational and inspiration people who can stir up excitement and get you focused on a goal – for a time. There are good points to be made for discipline and having purpose, on knowing who you are and working toward your strengths. But at the end of the day (or rope), it all comes down to this: what do you really believe about God?

Do you believe God is Who He says He is? Do you believe He said what He did and meant it? Do you believe He is the same yesterday, today and forever? Will He come through for you? Really?

What we believe is what determines our end. We can get stirred up on someone else’s belief system or will ourselves to do what we think we ought to believe but when the rubber hits the road and God asks you to step out on a very thin line – do you really believe Him enough to do it? What if you are doing all the “right” things according to your understanding of Scripture and what the teachers are saying are the “right” things and you still keep hitting a wall? Then what?   Will you still believe He is good? Will you still believe He has good things for you? How many times do you have to hit that wall before something in you says “maybe I have this all wrong…” when deep down inside, you really mean “maybe I have God all wrong?”

It’s been many years since I asked God to show me Who He really is. Not who I think He is, not who I’ve been told He is but Who He really is. May I warn you that if you ask that question you need to strap in and hold on? The ride will get bumpy and even frightening at times. But along the way you will also find a depth of peace you never knew existed. That peace that passes all understanding? It really exists. But you have to plunge into the storm to find it.

Very few of us purposely walk into a storm. It just feels so counter intuitive. But it’s the place where we find Him. It’s the place where He reveals Himself to us. Like Elijah, we cannot hear the small still Voice of God unless we go through the storm and the fire. But when it comes, oh, it comes! And it moves us in the core of our being. His Voice asks, “Do you really believe? When all seems lost, will you still believe? Do you really trust me?”