This post has been inspired by the many people who have reveled in our copious amount of faith in reference to this adoption process. We get comments very often about how much faith we have in God and it is most often said under the assumption that the faith is of our own conjuring. It has always made me uncomfortable as I would like for God to be glorified, not me and Josh. Over the past few months I have been compiling what I know about faith into a nice, neat pile. And wouldn’t you know? I have found that just like everything else, faith is from God.
The assertion is that we are feeling so calm and patient and at peace because we are special people with faith to spare. That we somehow started off with a magnificent storehouse of faith, and that is what we use to get by on the hard days. That we have conjured up this faith. That it’s because of us. That we just are “some of those people” who are blessed with faith.
How completely erroneous. Let me straighten the record. Not because I’m feeling a rant coming on, though I am, but because there’s someone bigger at work here who isn’t getting the credit due Him. Faith is not a human-conjured commodity. Faith is the direct result of knowing what you believe in, and that it will not let you down. I can not have faith in something that I have not experienced time after time with no change to the recurring experience. I can have hope in that thing, in that I would hope it would come through for me when I needed it, but until that actually happened (eventually over and over without ever failing), I would have no assurance that it would prove loyal to me. For example, I don’t have faith in my husband. I trust him to do what’s best for me whenever he can. I trust him to have my best interest at heart. But that trust cannot go so far as to say that my husband is incapable of failing me. Because he is. He’s human. Just like me. I hope beyond all hope that no one ever puts that much trust in me! We are not perfect. An devout faith in something unpredictable (like a human being) is impossible; or in the least unrewarded. That’s the beauty of faith in God. He is never changing. He provides for us today and every day. He has our best interests in His heart and works all things toward good every day.
Which brings me to the wraparound of the initial point. When something has provided for you again and again and proven to be infallible, you have faith in that thing. When God has shown His love and provision for me, His servant, every year and every week and every day and every minute, I will develop faith in Him to be there when I need Him. In reality, it is not me who developed the faith, but Him.
For Josh and I, in regards to the adoption, we were given a clear word from God; “Adopt from Russia.” It is our calling. It is His plan for us. He instilled the value in us and He is orchestrating the path we have been on to get there. As we look around us and see the miraculous provisions from His hand, we are calmed and given peace. “Surely God will provide.” We have faith. Yes, we have faith! Just make sure to attribute that fact to the awesome Creator we serve and view Him as one worthy of such steadfast trust. Because He’s earned it. He never changes. And He always works for our good.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:12-13
(regarding Abraham, who was told by God that he would father nations, though he had no children at the time) “Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead- since he was about a hundred years old- and that Sarah’s womb was also dead (she was barren). Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.” Romans 4:19-21