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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Faith AND Patience

Given October 16, 2007
Faith and patience. The Bible says we all have a measure of faith, Romans 12:3, and patience is one of the fruits of the Spirit. We, however, think of patience as something we need to help us endure a trial or wait out some hard time. And maybe that's true to a point. But I've gotten another view of faith and patience.

When we pray, we are to pray in faith, nothing wavering, "But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. James 1:6". That means that no matter how things look or feel, after we've prayed, we don't waver or doubt the Word of God for our situation. Sometimes our answer comes quickly and we rejoice but what about the times when we don't readily see the answer. What about those times when we wait and wait but it seems God is silent. That's where patience comes in!

Remember Daniel? He prayed for an explanation to a vision he'd had concerning the people and the answer didn't come right away. He prayed and fasted for three weeks! He didn't give up but exercised patience in the matter. Then, after three weeks, he heard from an angel, "Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia. Now I have come to explain to you what will happen to your people in the future, Daniel 10:12-14".

Since the first day Daniel prayed, his prayer was heard and the angel was dispatched according to his words. But there was resistance in the heavenlies and Satan tried to mess things up. What if Daniel had quit? What if he'd said, "Ah, just forget it!"? His words would have canceled the answer. Daniel used patience and kept with it, fervently continuing in prayer until the answer came. He mixed his faith with patience and got his answer. We need to do the same.

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