Every Christian faces a tension between believing in faith and in walking present reality. Hebrews 11, often referred to as the faith chapter, encourages us. In fact, God affirms, “There is something better! There is something better than we can even imagine!”
Something better? Yes! Something even more than we have faith for! It is so much better only God has thought of it!
“Now to Him who is able to do
exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think,
according to the power that works in us…”
It takes great faith stand firm. To know in the midst of unanswered prayer, something better is on the way!
Doesn’t Get Better!
Friends on vacation sent a picture of ocean and beach. The caption read, “It doesn’t get better than this!”
Men returning from sledding in the majestic beauty of the Rocky Mountains declared, “It doesn’t get better than this!”
A wonderful family welcomed the birth of a healthy baby into their home. Guess what they said? “It doesn’t get better than this!”
My father’s favorite place was sitting in his little fishing boat with a line dangling overboard. Drinking in the peacefulness of a quiet lake with autumn colours surrounding him, he would often say, “It doesn’t get better than this!”
My husband and I enjoy the special pleasure of family gathering in our little home. We lean back amidst the laughter and noise and say, “It doesn’t get better than this!”
We grasp brief and precious moments thanking God, “It doesn’t get better than this!”
Or does it?
The best this world has to offer is no comparison to what is yet to come! This world is where
bodies grow weak
marriages crumble and families struggle
tears flow and hearts ache
eyes see dimly and ears hear faintly
Here is but a faint reflection of what is to come! Faith will dwindle unless we have our eyes fixed on “something better,” the best awaiting in eternity.
“These were all commended for their faith,
yet none of them received what had been promised,
since God had planned something better for us
so that only together with us would they be made perfect.”
Who are the ones Hebrews is talking about? These are the ones who were persecuted and died in their faith without receiving what they had fervently prayed and believed for.
Unanswered prayer was no reflection on them! God had something more, something beyond their highest prayer!
Here is the daunting description of what they faced – through faith:
“There were others who were tortured,
refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection.
Some faced jeers and flogging,
and even chains and imprisonment.
They were put to death by stoning… sawed in two;
… killed by the sword.
They went about in sheepskins and goatskins,
destitute, persecuted and mistreated—
the world was not worthy of them.
They wandered in deserts and mountains,
living in caves and in holes in the ground.”
For me one line speaks volumes, “the world was not worthy of them.”
The tension arises as we walk faithfully in bodies of flesh inhabited by Holy Spirit! We yearn and hunger for the better that is waiting, longing for it to come now.
We witness the miraculous when heaven invades earth and God moves in divine intervention to the groaning we utter. Rightly we yearn and hunger for more! The more the spirit is fed, the stronger the spirit becomes. We move from faith to faith, strength to strength and glory to glory. All by God’s design.
In predicting His own death, Jesus said
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.
In this world you will have trouble.
But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
This tension between living in perfect peace while tossed by earth’s storm is supernaturally natural for faith-filled Christians. Our faith and hope rests beyond the dust of this earth in the One who overcame, Jesus Christ.
Whether our eyes witness the answers here and now, or we wait for the “something better” God has prepared, we stay the course. We pray and believe for the impossible. We stand undeterred.
Let us not miss the wording of Hebrews:
“…none of them received what had been promised,
since God had planned something better for us
so that only together with us
would they be made perfect.”
God just didn’t have something better for them! He has something greater for us because of what they suffered! There is a joint perfecting of faith and purpose for ALL who suffer without seeing the answer here and now.
Eternity will fully disclose the beauty of that perfection.
It is in continued faith that we hold to and believe the promise of God, while feeling the discord and tension of the present. In the joining of faith, we experience in a greater way the greatness of who God is.
“What, then, shall we say in response to these things?
If God is for us, who can be against us?
He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all –
how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
…in all these things we are more than conquerors
through him who loved us.”
Romans 8: 31, 32, 37
God has a perfect design for achieving all that Christ died for. His grace has not failed us! He has not abandoned us! Indeed, “in all these things we are more than conquerors!”
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