When Trouble Comes, Do You Have Real Faith or Wishbone Faith?

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Are you safe? Do you feel safe? Are you under attack? Does your life feel under attack in some area? Are you in trouble? Do you believe that God wants to protect you? Should you believe that? Whatever your answers are to any of these questions, know this as a truth: You desire to be safe. You want to be protected. You desire for God to protect you. How can I say that? It’s easy! First, you know it. Secondly, God has put that desire within all of us. There are hundreds of scriptures revolving around man’s desire for protection and God’s willingness to be our refuge and help in times of trouble. God is the one—the only one who can fulfill that desire, and it can only be fulfilled through the exercise of your faith in His promises through Jesus Christ.

You may have prayed or cried out for help recently. You may have prayed for God’s protection over you or your children or perhaps over your travels. In praying for His protection, it’s possible that you may have prayed a wishbone prayer. What is a wishbone prayer? It’s a prayer requesting something but having no real faith that God will do it. It is a prayer that isn’t really rooted in knowing what God wants for you. It’s a prayer not rooted in faith. It’s rooted in the equivalent of the expectation you would have for a wish to come true when you break a wishbone. It’s really a prayer of unbelief.

Unbelief is a problem. Unbelief hinders God answering prayers. We read in Mark 6:5-6 that Jesus Himself was hindered through unbelief. Mark 6:5-6 (NLT) says, “And because of their unbelief, He (Jesus) could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And He was amazed at their unbelief.”

God’s Word is full of secrets. The Apostle Paul often called them mysteries. These secrets are truths and promises that the world thinks are fables, myths, or whatever—anything but truth. The Apostle Paul and others were being used of God to help those that believed in Jesus, come to understand the secrets of God as we see in 1 Corinthians 4:1(NLT).  “… as mere servants of Christ we have been put in charge of explaining God’s secrets.”  It isn’t that God wants His ways to be secret. It is just that He won’t reveal His truths to those that would mock and trample them in unbelief and greed. As Jesus said, “Don’t give what is holy to unholy people. Don’t give pearls to swine! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.” (Matthew 7:6 NLT)

When you understand what God wants for you; when you come to know His Will for you; then it’s much easier to stand in sincere faith to what you know He wants for you. Your faith will change the very trouble-filled circumstances. As 1 John 5:14-15 (RSV) says, “And this is the confidence which we have in him, that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us.  And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of Him.” 

What a powerful secret to learn! This is what brings God’s life-changing power into our lives. It not only changes our circumstances, it changes us! It changes our way of thinking and our character. It turns us into people that truly trust God and have great faith!

So again, what is it that God wants for us? What is His will toward us? Well, we see in numerous places that first, He promised to help them out of the troubled place they were in, and then to protect them. We see that all the way from the Israelites in Egypt to Paul and Silas in prison.

When the Israelites cried out to God for help, God brought help through the person of Moses. God promised to deliver them from trouble, prosper them, and protect them if they’d trust in Him. We read it in Deuteronomy. 6:22-25 NIV. “Before our eyes the Lord sent miraculous signs and wonders… But He brought us out from there (their place of trouble,) to bring us in and give us the land that He promised on oath to our forefathers. The Lord commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear the Lord our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive (protected,) as is the case today…” 

The key to these promises manifesting in the lives of the Israelites coming out of Egypt was that they had to believe in and trust in Him. That is also our key. God promises that if we obey Him in our lifestyle and have faith—real faith, not wishbone faith—and trust in Him and what He promises us, He will protect us. We see these promises over and over in God’s Word. Psalms 9:9-10 (NKJV) says, “The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, A refuge in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; For You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You.”

The Bible tells us that God is not a respecter of persons. That means His promises apply to us all. We are also told that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever. That means He still feels the same about us today as He has toward all His children always! He loves us and wants His best for us!

Psalm 34:7 (NLT) “For the angel of the Lord guards all who fear Him, and He rescues them.”

In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt

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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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