Faith as a Spiritual Discipline
I have been enjoying The Story, especially the women’s study on Wednesday nights. One common theme I find myself reflecting on is God’s trustworthiness. As a parent, I can’t imagine what was going through Abraham’s mind when he was walking Isaac to the altar or what Joseph was thinking when he was living those desperate years in Egypt. Can you imagine being the mother of Moses and putting your baby in a basket and sending him down the river? Noah built an Ark and Moses wandered in the wilderness, all on the promise that God would be faithful. I’m guessing Noah, Moses and all the others had serious doubts, and it took great spiritual discipline to trust God and let go. In so many of these stories I see how God honors those who hold on loosely to what they cherish most dearly.
I remember dedicating our children when they were babies and having a clear vision in my mind:
We made a commitment to God that our sons belonged to Him. You know, that’s not a hard thing to do when things are going well and the future looks worry free. But what happens when our child goes off to camp for the first time? What if he were to get hit by, say, a tornado? What happens when he goes off on a mission trip to Africa? How do we handle it when they leave and our nest is empty? What happens when family suffers with physical, spiritual or emotional health issues? Beyond family, what happens when the future at the office or future of our church is threatened? That loose grip I once held on everything important to me morphs into:
The Story is reminding me that with God what is precious to me is safe with Him. I am not capable of imagining the love, mercy and goodness that He will show to those who are dedicated to Him. His good plan conquers my worries and fears every time! Loosening that white knuckled grip I tend to have is an act of faith. It is a spiritual discipline I need to practice every day, just as those great characters in the Old Testament had to do.
Janette Schull, Hope member and elder