Here is #27 of 31 Questions in 31 Days! To learn more about this 31 Day series, just search "31 Questions" in the search bar above or click here!
Q #27: My relationship with God one second is great & in another moment I'm lost & confused. Right now I am lost and I don't know how to get back to Him.
A: As a pastor, I run across many people who feel just like the person who wrote these words above. For many people trying to follow Jesus, they feel like they have a yo yo experience with God. In some ways, they feel like their relationship with God is almost bi-polar with moments of terrific highs and other moments where they hardly feel like a Christian at all.
To the person who is looking for direction in this way, I offer the following thoughts:
- Faith and feelings are not the same. Fortunately, our standing with God is not based on how we feel about it. There should be times when I am aware of my security with God, but really the whole Christian life is an endeavor to trust God. In terms of our salvation, we put our hopes on what the Bible says and on the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. When I am prone to feelings of being lost, I need to orient myself around what is true; I do that through reading the Bible. Think about what the Psalmist says, "Your Word is a lamp to my feet, a light to my path." (Psalm 119:105).
- Reject what is a lie and cling to what is true. The Bible says that Satan is our enemy who seeks in every way he can to turn us from God. Jesus called him the "father of all lies". When you begin to feel lost and like you don't have a relationship with God, even though you have confessed Jesus as your Savior, and you're trying to live for him--sometimes, our enemy or even our well-intentioned friends tell us lies that we repeat to ourselves. "You're not a Christian." "You're not good enough." "You don't really believe that, do you?" "Just give up. You'll never live this life consistently." Instead of repeating these lies to yourself and dwelling on them, start dwelling on the truth of God's word. "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved" (Acts 2:21) "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:8).
- Start praying, confessing and meditating on the truth the Bible proclaims about who you are in Christ. The Bible says that the power of life and death is in the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). In order to become more stable in your walk with Christ, start speaking God's promises about you in every situation. This will help you become more and more confident in following Christ consistently and keep your head above the waters of doubt and confusion that visit EVERYONE in the course of life. Peter writes that the word of God is like milk for a newborn baby that helps us to grow up into our salvation (1 Peter 2:2). All of us have a need to regularly feed ourselves by dwelling in the countless positive promises that God gives us in his word.
The Bible is the foundational rock of our experience with God. Without planting ourselves firmly in it, we will constantly be thrown to and fro by the circumstances of life, the doubts we have in our hearts and the sometimes unhelpful words of others.
Go after God's Word--it's the source of our strength in following Christ!
Check out more posts from the 31 Questions series on subjects as varied as marijuana, infidelity, 666, the eternal destiny of children who die, dealing with discouragement, cremation, co-habitation, baptism, suicide, prayer, the origins of scripture, hell, work, the third heaven, tithing, Old Testament salvation, giving in the Old Testament, reading Proverbs, recovering from failure, taking the Bible literally, understanding the parables, universalism, Bible credibility, disappointment with people, and even speaking in tongues!
This coming Sunday at First Assembly Community Ministries, we will be changing the regular format for our service to accommodate questions from the congregation! I can't wait. Join us there on Sunday, February 1 for a morning of discovery on what we call Q Sunday for two unique services 9 and 11 AM.
Labels: 31 questions, Christianity, discipleship, doubt, Q Sunday, Question and Answer, salvation, security, the Bible