Whose report will you believe?
“Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?” Isaiah 53:1
“Elijah went before the people and said, "How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him." 1 Kings 18:21
Life is full of choices. It is something that never fades away. From infancy to adulthood, we are surrounded with endless decisions that need to be made. Once we decide on something, we then begin to move in that direction. For this reason, we must seriously think abo9ut each decision that we make. One factor that greatly affects and influences our decisions is our belief system. Our beliefs are shaped through the experiences that we go through, education, social influence, words that we say and also hear and there is God. The Holy Spirit who is ever present within us convicts us and guides us in the decisions that we make.
Many times we find ourselves in those situations that we are wavering and we do not know what to do. What do we decide on? Remember for every decision that you make, you will be accountable for it. The consequences and the outcomes there after are all subject to the decision that you made. Isaiah asks the children of Israel in Isaiah 53:1. I believe, Isaiah was repeating the same question that Elijah had asked them. It is a time in the land of Israel when King Ahab and his wife Jezebel had brought idol worship in the land and they had caused the children of Israel to stray away from God. This made Elijah to get upset and told the children of Israel to choose whom they will believe in. He brought to task the 400 prophets of Baal to prove who the real God was. He told them, if Baal is god then, we will serve him, if God is God, then we will serve him.
In life, we are exposed to both good and evil. On the left, you have experience of other people who have left an impression on you and on the right; you have the circumstantial evidence and the reports of men as well. But where do all of these lead you? Do they lead you towards God or away from Him? At the end of the day, the reality is that it all comes down to your DECISION. Whose report will you believe? Will the decision that you make bring testimony to God or men will be happy that they won your heart? We should always choose to bring glory and honour to God and not to any man. Whatever we do and choose/decide to, we should realize that it reflects who we are and gives a testimony of us. Remember you are a letter written to the world, you are salt and light of this world – you carry the life of God in you.
Sometimes, the devil takes advantage of our minds and fights with us and in this way he brings doubts to us and we doubt the word of God. Remember what the devil said to Eve in the Garden of Eden? He came and asked Eve a simple question… “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?" Genesis 3:1. In this, he brought doubt into the mind of Eve despite the fact that she knew what God had said and thus, she disobeyed God and sinned. This is the same case to us. We find ourselves in situations where we have prayed and trusted god for something and God has spoken to us and there, the devil brings doubts along. Along the same line, the situations that we are in are dictating otherwise. They make us see as if God is a liar and what He has said will not come to pass. Here, we are confused on whom to believe. We are tossed between believing what God had earlier spoken and what the situation is dictating and what we are seeing as well.
Take a look at Jairus in Mark 5:21-24, 35-43. He comes to Jesus and tells him that his daughter is sick at the verge of death. He convinces Jesus to go with him to his house so as He could see the girl. Jesus tarries along the way and a messenger comes and tells Jairus “Your daughter is dead," they said.”Why bother the teacher anymore?" Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, "Don’t be afraid; just believe." Mark 5:35-36 Jairus could have chosen to believe his servant and told Jesus to go on with his business and allow him to go and burry his daughter. But he instead chose to believe what Jesus told him. When he held on to the last minute, his daughter was raised back to life. What is that thing that you have told God and you are waiting for him to come and fulfill it for you but the reports that are coming along are all so negative and breaking your heart? Will you hold on like Jairus did or you will believe what the prevailing circumstances around you are saying? The problem with us is that we give up too easily when the miracle is almost arriving and when God comes, He meets that we compromised and moved camps and thus we miss our blessings. Let’s learn to hold on.
Take a look at Blind Bartimaeus in Mark 10:46-52. He knew clearly that he wanted to see and that was his only day for him to get healed because Jesus was passing through the city of Jericho. As he called out to Jesus, the people around him were discouraging him and telling him that he was disturbing Jesus and causing mayhem as Jesus passed by. I believe that some of them were telling him to keep quiet and instead, they would continue supporting him and giving him more money and others maybe gave him cash there so as he could keep quiet. But Bartimaeus was determined to have his eyes opened so that he could see. So, defying all the pleas and calls that he was hearing around him, he called out the more till Jesus heard him and healed him. This tells us that the more we get negative reports or opposition in our quest to get what we want, this should give us more morale to pursue the more and harder and with more passion. It is not time to get confused and give up.
In Numbers 13, Joshua and Caleb and 10 others go to spy the land of Canaan and they bring a bad report to the people but Caleb and Joshua tell the people that despite the report that they got from the ten, we have a big God who can fight for us and thus the can go and posses the land because they are well able. (vs. 30). You should know that you are well able to do more that what you can think. The power lies in you. You have the choice to decide what to believe in and what not to. If the children of Israel chose to believe the ten spies, they would never have gone ahead to inherit the Promised Land. Your decisions and view of things will also be influenced so much on the kind of people and company that you keep. If you walk with people who will always be a discouragement to you, be sure that most definitely, you will also be influenced negatively; but if you have people who are influencing you positively and provoking your faith, be sure, you will continually grow whether you like it or not because your friends will always be on your case.
I can go on and on through the new and the Old Testament. Both are filled with testimonies and evidences of man responding to God’s report and responding to other reports and the outcome is always the same. When they believed God’s report, they were blessed. When they did not believe and refused to obey, they forfeited the blessing the Lord had for them. It is no different today for you and I. When we believe the report of the Lord, the hand of the Lord is revealed to us every time we do so. In this time and generation that we are living in, it will be a disaster to allow your mind to get the best of you. Follow your heart – Listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit who dwells and lives in you. Remember that God confirms his word with signs following you. As you purpose in your heart today to obey God and believe His report, which is contained in his Word (the bible), then know right now that you will not be disappointed that you did so because the Lord never turns faith away empty handed.