Is your faith weak?
Do you feel like you are always walking a tightrope when it comes to your faith?
Is your faith hanging on the line depending on how things are going?
You say that you follow Jesus. And your faith seems firm until you have to put that faith to the test.
It’s like you are bold as long as nothing is happening.
But this bothers you. You want to have a firm faith. You want to be bold in the face of fear. It’s even so bad that you often question your salvation.
Is this biblical?
I will never turn my back on you….on second thought…
There are several stories in the bible that depict unstable faith – we see it in Abraham, Saul, David and several more.
The example I want to look at is Peter.
Peter has been with Jesus for some time. He has seen Jesus do the unthinkable and had a more personal faith experience than any of the other disciples when he walked on water with Jesus.
This same Peter tells Jesus that he will never turn his back on him – in others words Peter makes a very, very bold statement. But sadly it seems that a short time after he says this he does the very thing he promised Jesus he wouldn’t do.
As soon as things got out of hand and dangerous Peter denies he even knows Jesus. And not just once, but three times.
So is it safe to say that Peter’s faith was weak and unstable?
Maybe it was.
Maybe it was just misplaced.
But why is Peter’s faith so weak?
I’m not 100% sure why Peter’s faith was weak. I think it’s very evident that fear had a big part to play. There are many possibilities.
- Maybe it’s because Jesus appeared to be defeated? After all, Jesus is supposed to be a warrior King.
- Maybe he didn’t want to go through the same thing as Jesus was having to go through?
- Maybe what just happened has caused Peter to doubt who Jesus has been saying He is? If He is the son of God, why doesn’t he just get free?
The fact of the matter is that Peter’s a man who walked beside Jesus and had a weak moment of faith. And I believe the bible placed this here for you and me.
To let us know that our faith will fail us sometimes. And that God understands.
When I am weak He is strong
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
I love this story because of its realness.
It gives me Hope.
It shows me that even someone who walked side-by-side with the son of God could turn his back on Him at a moment’s notice.
And even better than that, I love that Jesus didn’t reject Peter after the incident.
Instead, He gave Peter a very important task. I believe Jesus knew that Peter had learned some very important lessons.
- Alone we are weak but in our weakness He is strong
- Peter learned that overconfidence can have negative consequences
So Jesus asked Peter to watch over His church.
Jesus doesn’t call the qualified, He gives the unqualified a promise that He will be with them.
I love the way John Ortberg says it, “God isn’t in the business of rejecting people who make wrong choices; he’s in the business of redeeming them.“
So what do you do when your faith is weak?
So what do you do when your faith is weak? (notice I said when)
I believe there are several things you can do, but I want to focus on two that I see evident in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10.
Remember that His grace is Sufficient
God is still present in your weakness. Your strength doesn’t come from within it comes from God. It’s God’s grace that got you here and it the grace that will see your through.
Rest in that truth.
Rejoice that God is your strength
Not only do you need to accept that you are weak, you need to rejoice that you are weak. Because when you are weak then God is glorified through that weakness. His love shines brighter, His voice sounds sweeter, His presence more vivid.
So rejoice in your weakness.
More weakness means more Jesus.
Would you rather be weak and have Jesus, or be strong in your own strength?
Do you feel like a failure because of your weak faith?
Are you sinning in your overconfidence?