Friday, December 27, 2013

"Help Me Overcome My Unbelief"

Well, I’m diseased…
Everything I read, see or experience I relate to teaching, learning and education. This diagnosis also causes me to avoid some things that are meant for my personal relationship with God as well as my family.

As I read an article by Terry Pluto, faith and sports writer for the Akron Beacon Journal, I was doing my best to relate his words to my teaching. In the article, “God Believes in Us”, Pluto says, “I need to remember that God believes in me even more than I believe in myself.” Now I could write a whole blog post about that characteristic of God. How, as teachers and leaders we should embody a faith in our students that surpasses their own. That was the point when God wrestled away the symptoms of my “disease” and shifted my blinders away from education and fixated them on Him. 

Pluto went on to refer to a story in Mark chapter 9, where a father brings his demon-possessed son to be healed by Jesus. In verse 23 Jesus said, “Everything is possible for one who believes.” While that is profound, it’s what is written in the following verse that God intended for me. The father in the story responds to Jesus with this desperate plea, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”  

I’m constantly asking God for “stuff”, but I can’t ever remember requesting a stronger faith. I always was in the frame of mind that it was my job to believe and have faith because God offers such an abundance of promises and blessings. But God used Terry Pluto’s words to set me straight; “I have to remind myself that before I ask God for anything else, I must ask him for more faith.”
This is exactly what I needed to hear, as my vision for this blog and my future in education was becoming much more of mine than God’s. I was feeling antsy about who was reading the blog and the possibilities it would lead to.
God really provided clarity through Hebrews 11. How ignorant of me to think that people like Moses or Noah, as well as the numerous others mentioned in the chapter, never had to ask God to help them overcome their unbelief. As we ask for an increased faith, I think we’ll gain contentment in knowing God maintains a holy perspective. Chapter 11 also describes all of these faithful servants as pleasing to God and commends them as righteous.

We very easily mask God’s power when we don’t ask for help. I think the song “Light Up the Sky” by the Afters displays the great contrast between a meek faith constructed on our own, and the faith achieved through God’s design.

Now when I seek the vision God has given me for education (in addition to anything else), I’ll sincerely start with, “help me overcome my unbelief”.