There is one major difficulty that faces every born-again believer, one great task that none of us will overcome in this life, perhaps the most difficult one of all. We cannot see who we serve, we must live by faith.
We can see the wonders of His creation, but even that is stymied by the curse, (Gen. 3:17) we can feel His presence within us, the Holy Spirit, but even that can be tempered by our own emotions, we can see the blessings of the material things, family and friends, we can even see the expression of His love for us in our health and well-being, but we cannot see Him. He did not visibly show up to join you for dinner last night, you did not sit down for a few minutes yesterday and have a one on one conversation with Him, asking Him if He would like a glass of water or a cup of tea. Does this help some of you to understand how the just shall live by faith, (Romans 1:17) why Peter said, “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.” (1 Peter 1:8)
We serve a God we cannot visibly see, and we are expected, no, commanded to lead others to Him. Herein is where we find the fork in the road, one path leads to faith, the other toward emotions, the decision must be made, you cannot follow both, there is no gray area, emotions can be blown about by nearly every movement of the wind, faith stands on the rock that is Jesus Christ. The immediate is where the emotions reside, the current circumstances that surround us, fear of the future, trepidations and regrets of the past, faith counts much of the past as dung, (Phil. 3:8) it rests in the eternal promises of the Lord, it seeks not its own, but the things of Christ.
“And then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not.” (Mark 13:21) Do not believe them, they have not seen Him either, but many already have and many more soon in the future will appear claiming to be the messiah, culminating of course with the anti-christ. People of small faith need to see with their eyes, some, like those who walked in the wilderness for forty years need to see nearly every day. Most who call Him Lord need some visible form of proof of His love and provisions, food, clothing, material goods in one way or another, health, anything tangible, something they can see and physically feel. Few can sit down in a prison cell, beaten, naked, cold, and still sing praises to His name, few can sit on the dunghill and continue in their integrity. “For we walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Cor. 5:7) Our flesh, our emotions are to be kept in submission by us, (1 Cor. 9:27) the just shall live by faith.
I have often pondered my first moment in His presence, both in great humility and fear, and in what I can only best describe as a dire need to be in His presence. When I see Him, I know that everything will be alright, that there was never any reason to doubt, that any fear I ever experienced was more than ridiculous, I will know that it had always been alright, I just would not live in that truth. I do not know how much of the rain that falls on the just and the unjust is going to appear before we are taken home, either by death or the rapture, I do not even know what the rest of today is going to bring, but I know my Redeemer lives, I know He is faithful, and I know the end He has purposed for me, I am written in the palms of His nail scarred hands, I have been saved by grace through faith, my salvation rests on the actions of the Most High, I am secure in His hands, I will see Him in person when He calls me to His throne room, not before, until that moment, the faith He has blessed me with is sufficient to the tasks He has laid before me.
I pray you know the same faith, and even greater.