“Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time” – Oswald Chambers
I mentioned yesterday that last weeks bible study was on faithfulness. I really, really enjoyed studying 2 Kings 5: 1-14, so I wanted to share a little bit with everyone.
In Hebrews, it tell us that “faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we cannot see” – Hebrews 11:1 But, in reality, that is hard to put into practice.
1 Kings 5 tells us the story of Naaman being healed of leprosy. His story portrays a great example of faith. Naaman is the commander of the army of the King of Syria. He is a great man, who is highly regarded, but he has leprosy. Then, he learns of a man in Israel that can heal him, so he asks his king for permission to go to Israel (because Syria and Israeli tended to fight a lot). And, not only does the king allow him to go, but he sends him with a letter, ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold and ten sets of clothing. The silver alone equals about 1.2 Million dollars in todays currency. This tells us how valuable he was to the king.
Naaman makes the trip to see the King of Israel to ask for healing. At first, the King of Israel is confused and mad because he does not have the power to heal Naaman. However, Elisha sends word to the King of Israel and says “have the man come to me and he will know that there is a prophet in Israel.” You see, the King of Israel did not trust in God at the time nor recognize that Elisha was a prophet from God.
The King agrees and Naaman goes to see Elisha. When Naaman gets there, it doesn’t quite go as he planned. Elisha sends out a servant to tell Naaman “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”
Naaman is angry, frustrated and offended. He traveled all that way and Elisha didn’t even come out and see him. Elisha sent a messenger out and then tells him to go do the simplest thing, “wash yourself seven times“. Naaman immediately begins questioning, why the Jordan river, why not other rivers in his own land. Then, one of his servants says to him ““My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!”
Naaman then goes to the river, washes seven times, and is healed. Naaman had to overcome his pride and questioning to have faith. What do you have to overcome?
For me, it is control and timing. I tend want things to happen in my timing and fit in my little plan. However, I love the quote from above: “Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time” – Oswald Chambers
I may not always understand God’s reasoning or timing in life, but I have confidence in His character, that He is good, and that His timing is perfect.