Parent go to lines are a dime a dozen; a dime a dozen is also one of my parents’ go to lines. Much of what we have learned started with some type of logic. The problem is, logic as a starting point does not guarantee logic as the foundation of the final conclusion.
It is logical to assume that an object will remain the way it is unless some external or internal force influences it. If enough pressure is applied to that object, the object will be changed into another shape which will be maintained until a new force is applied. Still, does this logic extend to your facial expressions?
If you keep making that face, your face will stay that way.
There is logic in this statement made by my parents and many of yours. Your face will stay the same as long as you apply the same force with the muscles in your face. If you were able to hold your face in that shape for long enough, the operative word being if, some muscles would weaken while others would strengthen and your face would most likely maintain that shape. There is logic but the likelihood of this logic playing out to the suggested conclusion is very low.
Wives’ tales and superstitions have crept their way into our faith through logic.
If we believe, it will happen. If we don’t waver in our faith; if we hold on long enough it will become reality and stay that way. There is some logic to this, at least as a starting point. There is no shortage of biblical stories and teachings that attribute success to faith in God. Faith is the foundation of our salvation – God’s grace is accepted through faith. Faith is the foundation of answered prayer – asking God to address your situation is in itself faith in His abilities and willingness to intervene. Still, does this logic extend to granting your desired outcome all the time?
We experience the power of God when we have faith but God is not limited or forced by our faith.
The prosperity/name it and claim it gospel go to lines, are a dime a dozen but even at that price don’t buy into them. Faith is the foundation of all the things God does in us and through us but there is no amount of faith that can limit or force God’s hand to take action. Faith invites God to act because faith pleases God but His pleasure in our faith does not negate His perfection. Still, does this logic mean that God does not place limits on His response or choose not to respond in what we would call a positive way because of the size of our faith?
Our faith does not sway God to act in a way that does not accomplish His plan.
God’s plan is not one-dimensional. It is not limited to a single chain of cause and effect events. God’s plan is for His creation to enter relationship with Him through faith and continue to grow in that relationship and faith. His plan is to weave together events and outcomes that we cannot even begin to predict or dream of so that our relationship with Him is deepened and our faith is expanded.
If our faith is small in a particular area God, in His perfection, may allow our lack of faith to limit His response so that we will be forced to rely on Him even more.
If our faith is small He, in His perfection, may choose to take action because this will increase our faith.
If our faith is very strong in an area He, in His perfection, may choose not to act because we will trust Him and accept His actions as perfect.
If our faith is strong in an area He, in His perfection, may choose to take action, confirming that the strength of our faith is in fact warranted.
This is still a simplistic illustration of God and His plan based on a one-dimensional premise.
God’s response could combine the miraculous with an ordinary event, put off by an unexpected detour (unexpected by us not God) followed by intervention outside of our personal world and completed by a pre-existing but overlooked resource to create the outcome we asked for. This ends up growing our faith. While He is growing our faith, He may be growing another person’s faith by not giving them the outcome they wanted; answering their faith bathed request with NO. During all this, other people’s faith may be growing because they are witnessing the faith displayed in both situations as those involved trust God even when His answer was no or took a much less direct path than expected.
If you keep placing your faith in God, your faith will stay that way.
Much of what we have learned started with some type of logic. The problem is, logic as a starting point does not guarantee logic as the foundation of the final conclusion. Logic says (if you believe God’s word) that God will respond to our faith. Logic says (if you believe God’s word) that God has a perfect plan. Logic says (if you believe God’s word) that our faith in God will not always give us what we want but it will lead to God giving us what we need. Logic says (if you believe God’s word):
…we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 (NIV)
It is a much stronger faith that accepts God will not always do what we want than a faith that believes He will do whatever we want.