Monday, June 9, 2008

Summer Reading Update: Living Faith by Helen Roseveare

Last night I finished Living Faith by Dr. Helen Roseveare. I had been really excited to read this book, as I mentioned previously, and was ready for a slight change of pace from the normal reading I do for my theology classes. This was a nice transition into summer reading. One of the blessings of reading about people’s lives is that you get to see the power of God in the experiences of real people. It gives encouragement to the discouraged to see that the same God who works for them in their situations will work in your life in a similar situation. Helen Roseveare’s life was not without suffering or trials. But, it was also one of joy. This book recounts the events in her life that God used to draw her closer to him and to make her faith in his promises deeper. Here are some quotes that I found encouraging:

“It was hard to learn the lesson. To walk by faith and not by sight had to become a living fact of relationship where the reality of the unseen was more real than the appearance of visible results. Seeking results is often a not-very-subtle means used to prove the reality of one’s faith, when in actual fact it only shows the existence of doubts in one’s mind. Results per se are no proof of the existence of faith, any more than the lack of visible results are the proof of the absence of faith.”

“If I will allow God all rights to my life, to stir me until He sees I am ready to be applied, I can trust God then, in His perfect timing, to know where He wants to apply me. God does not need to tell us ahead of time. Until we are stirred, we are not ready for application.”

“Without faith in God, we shall not seek to obey His command to “pray without ceasing.” We must believe that God is, that He cares and that He can answer.”

“Faith enables us to believe that God has prepared a path for each of us, and that He desires to lead us into and along that pathway.”

I hope that these quotes encourage you like they did me. One of the biggest blessings of this book was the realization that I am not the only one who fears and struggles with trusting God. And it was convicting as well to know that too often my struggles with fear are simply as a result of the rodents overtaking my house or the turbulence of an airplane. Helen Roseveare regularly faced life threatening situations at the hands of the rebel army that sought to take over the Congo. Books like these are good for us. It makes us remember those who have gone before us, but also makes us mindful of the great sacrifice that many of the missionaries of old, and even now, face as they lay down their lives so that the nations might know Him. Thank you, Dr. Roseveare, for your obedience to the Gospel no matter the cost.

1 comment:

debt said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Courtney. It is nice to be reminded that we are not the only ones who struggle with trusting and resting in God. She came to learn the truths through the wrestling. Her wrestling, also, was not an indication of a lack of faith, but a leading of the Lord to bring her to complete trust in Him. She would not have learned it otherwise. It is a relationship with the one who bought us, isn't it? I am thankful that the Lord knows my frame and my wrestling and He walks with me through it and leads me to His restful waters. He knows and He can be trusted. Getting there is hard, at times, but He is faithful even when we are faithless. Thanks for the encouragement!! A good word.