Faith in Spring and Everything.
My husband and I spend the month of March in Windsor, Canada in what we call our “lake house.” As we packed up the car and pulled up the navigation for our long road trip up north, my husband reminded me that when we returned home, there would be flowers blooming and sun shining everywhere we looked. It was hard to believe while watching snowflakes form crystal patterns on the windshield, but we all know that after Winter (no matter how long it lasts) comes Spring. Well, March came and went. Our drive back to Virginia was easy and sunny, just as my husband had said. We enjoyed our first day back in our home and spent the night enjoying a full DVR.
The next morning when I was getting dressed for the gym I realized something wasn’t as it should be. There was no sun pouring in from behind the curtains, no sound of lawn mowers and kids playing, wasn’t this Spring? I peeled back the blinds only to find white as far as the eye could see. The neighborhood had been blanketed in snow overnight, and it showed no sign of stopping. Where there should have been daffodils and cherry blossoms, buzzing bees and birds chirping, gloom stood in its place. It was freezing, it was icy, snow was falling, and the trees were bare. Nothing outside resembled Spring, and it certainly didn’t feel like Spring, but it was Spring.
So often what we believe to be true is based off of what we see. Around the country, and particularly in places that see all four seasons, there was a unanimous excitement for the arrival of springtime. We were preparing for it physically and emotionally. When the weather-man announced it was officially Spring while we were still wrapped in blankets, sipping hot chocolate and scraping ice off our cars, we weren’t too happy. All corners of the nation began to cry, “Isn’t it supposed to be Spring?!” “It’s not Spring, it’s snowing!!” “Spring isn’t coming this year!” Sadly, we fall into this trap of unbelief in all areas of our lives. There is a battle for our faith. There is a battle for what we will believe and who we will trust. At some point, the battle became far too hard for us to fight, and we succumbed to the temptation to only believe what we can see and prove.
I have been struggling with back problems since 2005. These disc issues effect my ability to live every-day life the way I’d like to. I am not able to exercise without pain, I can’t plan ahead for trips and adventures because I don’t know how the pain will be at the time, and I have acquired a lot of fear over the years as it relates to me getting older. As much as I try to avoid thinking about how many years have been spent in physical therapy and on chiropractors’ tables, I still spend far too much time wondering why it hasn’t gotten better. Confessing my healing and praising God for healing my back while I can’t feel my legs from the swelling in my back is challenging. It seems unrealistic and backwards. I desire so badly to be healed, and then to thank and praise the Lord for healing me. I will shout it from the rooftops! I will throw a party in celebration! I will never stop proclaiming how I was delivered from my pain! After walking with God for so long, I know good and well that is not how He works.
We are to have faith in His word despite what we see, think, or feel. Hebrews 1:11 says “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” I want to share the Amplified version to really paint a picture here: “Now Faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses] (emphasis mine.)
We all want to have faith, and most of us really believe we have faith, but if we let our actions speak over our words, and our words speak the truth…do we really have faith? Isaiah 53:5 says, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.” The Word says that I am healed. So as I sit here with throbbing discs poking into my nerves, I can say with confidence that I am healed. God wants to know that we trust Him when it doesn’t make sense. He wants to know that even when our circumstances are the complete opposite of what He has promised, His Word still stands.
And as I look outside my window now, I know that we have made it. My nose is itchy from all the stunning flowers growing, children are throwing a kick-ball across the street, our neighbor is mowing his lawn, and I finally had to turn the air-conditioning on. My latest grocery store run included lemons, cucumbers, colorful place mats and Zyrtec. The sun is shining, and though the winter was long and at times it seemed as if it may never end, it did end. It always does.
Even if you still have pain, have faith that you are healed because the Word promises it. Even if you are still depressed, have faith that you are joyful, because the Word promises it. Even if you have failed, have faith that you will have success, because the Word promises it. Even if you still have temptations, have faith that you can triumph over them because the Word promises it. And even if there is still snow outside your window, have faith that it is Spring, the Word promises it.
for behold, the winter is past;
the rain is over and gone.
The flowers appear on the earth,
the time of singing has come,
and the voice of the turtledove
is heard in our land.
The fig tree ripens its figs,
and the vines are in blossom;
they give forth fragrance.
Arise, my love, my beautiful one,
and come away.
(Song of Solomon 2:11-13 ESV)