My parents thought we were crazy. I left my comfortable, enjoyable, sweet spot in life as a first grade public school teacher to follow my husband who had already left teaching to temporarily pastor our hurting home church. After nine years of wanting to go to a seminary to learn more so he could be more effective, we left for Findlay, Ohio.
Randy would enter seminary as he pastored a small country church. Our first thought was how can we do this? Where God guides, He provides was our mantra and mission. We prayed humbly, sincerely, daily and sometimes hourly asking for direction. God opened necessary doors. What we thought was financially impossible became absolutely doable.
We sold our home. We left Oklahoma not knowing the salary package for Randy. Crazy. We left not knowing who of our three children would go with us as two of them were in college. My plan was to secure a teaching job to help support us. God’s plan was to take me on a journey that was only God. Our denomination asked me to consider a new position being formed, putting other part time jobs into one full time job with a sketchy job description. Who in their right mind would walk into that situation? Crazy.
Only a Gumby. As I spent the next 13 years traveling the world teaching, helping leaders, always learning myself, taking seminary courses while doing this work, so I could better help others and pass on what God had given to me, my faith stretched like the arms and legs on a Gumby. What I learned was I had to be flexible and pliable…like a Gumby. Gumby became my inner mascot that represented a faith that is stretched beyond human efforts.
Randy and I always questioned ourselves and our abilities to walk where God led but we never questioned God. “Why can’t we do this?” was always followed by “Why not, God can do anything”. Sometimes faith like this looks foolish and crazy to a watching world. But crazy, Gumby faith is exactly what Jesus wants from us.
Jesus Heals a Demon-Possessed Boy
14 When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. 15 “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. 16 I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.”
17 “You unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” 18 Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed at that moment.
19 Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”
20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
THINK ABOUT IT
In uncertainty, we can be certain of this. God is with us. God never left us. God is stretching our arms and legs, minds, heart and souls and pouring into us what He knows we need for such a time as this. We have a tendency to think only of what has been taken away and we sulk in our lack of faith attitudes.
What if we look to God, who is always at work in all kinds of circumstances and trust in what God is doing in our lives as we focus on Him? What if we seriously trust that He knows what He is doing? What if we seriously trust that God is teaching us through the pain of our current circumstances that will build our faith and cause renewed growth? What if we rely on God as our complete confidence?
Be Gumbys for God! Go in faith believing that God will provide where He guides and provide growth in the circumstance. Listen to Him. Be and do all in Jesus Name for that is where the power comes from.
Dear Heavenly Father,
I have zero confidence in me. Most times I begin in fear of getting it wrong. Then you whisper, “o you of little faith…have confidence in Me”. Yes, it’s all about you working in and through me, dear Lord. It’s all about you. You are my confidence. Nothing is impossible with you. So, what’s next, Abba Father? I’m ready.
In Jesus Name, Amen. I believe.