I Believe; Help My Unbelief!
If I were to ask if you have ever struggled with your faith, I would expect the answer would be a resounding “YES”! I know there are those of you who believe you have always been strong in the Lord but if you are truthful, you will acknowledge that has not always been true. Many of the key people noted within the Bible had moments where their faith was tested and they needed encouragement from God. It is part of our growing process and our dependence on God.
Although these moments exist at different points in our lives, they should never be points where we dwell. We must continuously strengthen our faith through the word of God. Hearing and “digesting” what is in the Bible will encourage us in times of weakness and energize us in times of fatigue. The Bible has the “ability” to change our perspective on life and the challenges we face every day.
There is a wonderful account in Mark 9 were a father came and pleaded to Jesus on his son’s behalf. This father had lost hope and was seemingly weary due to his son’s condition. His child had been possessed from childhood and the evil spirit continually tried to destroy the child. His father, who obviously loved him, tried to do everything possible over the years to save his son. In his final effort before giving up, he came to Jesus and His Disciples. When he explained to Jesus the situation, the father openly showed his battle with keeping the faith. He said to Jesus, “…IF you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Wow! The father faced the Son of God and questioned whether Jesus could heal his son! He was tired and felt like he was without hope even though his Deliverer was right in front of him. Sometimes we find ourselves so burdened with worries, issues and emotions that we miss God’s deliverance placed right in front of us. An answer that we seek may be within our grasps but we dwell in our despair instead. We need the Bible to open our eyes.
In this passage, when Jesus said to the father, “If you can believe…”, the father did something profound which saved his son’s life. He confessed his struggle with unbelief. He acknowledged that his faith was lacking. The father told Jesus, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” In those few words, the father acknowledged Jesus as his Lord and confessed his faith. He also asked for help with his fight against a lack of faith.
Each of us need to take inventory of our faith daily. We need to mimic the father and acknowledge where our faith is lacking and then ask the Lord for help. Too many people try to fortify their faith through their own efforts. That’s the wrong approach. Ask the Lord for help in your areas of weakness. Read the Bible regularly and meditate on what it says. Listen to preached messages that will build your faith. You will find your faith growing stronger before you realize it.