I just finished watching "Faith Like Potatoes," an inspiring movie based on a true story about Angus Buchan. A scene about half way through struck me. Angus and area farmers are scrambling to bring a raging fire under control before it spreads to a neighboring plantation. Tensions are high, and Angus starts repeating to himself "What things soever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them." (Mark 11:24, KJV). Finally he declares to his farmhand, "Simeon, we must pray for rain now!" And Simeon responds, "There will be no rain. The rain season is not here yet." Angus insists, "We must pray for rain now!" And again Simeon says, "There will be no rain. The rain season is not here yet." And Angus prays anyway!
I watched the scene over and over. How often does life bring circumstances that seem impossible and while I know I should pray, I don't because the answer I'm looking for isn't "in season." While I believe God is capable of all things, I don't want to ask for the impossible because I don't want to be disappointed if the answer is no.
I found the documentary's description of Angus convicting: "a zealous farmer willing to take God at His Word." Do I take God at His word? I have asked myself this question before. A verse will resonate with me and I'll say to myself "I know this is true but do I really live like I believe it? Do I behave in a way that reflects my faith in God's promises?" I know this can get a little shady and go into the whole "name it and claim it" philosophy. That's not where I'm coming from. I'm talking about taking the specific promises God has given in His word, reading them in context (this is key), and trusting Him to answer. Let me give an example ... in 2 Peter, we're promised everything we need for life and godliness, to participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption of the world (2 Peter 1, NIV). If I truly believe that, when I start to walk down a path counter to God's will (anger, impatience, gossip, whatever), if I seek God's help, His Holy Spirit will give me the tools I need to overcome the flesh and walk in obedience by the power of His Spirit.
Obviously, this is a growing process and part of maturing spiritually. However, I wonder if for someone like me, who has been a Christian for 30-some years, it is easy to know Scripture but have it become rote. To lose the power and impact of such amazing promises because I've heard them so many times. I don't want that to be true. I want to be like Angus in my faith ... God said it, I believe it, and I'll wait until I see the fulfillment of His promise ... A woman who takes God at His word.
So what happened with Angus and the fire? Storm clouds gathered, drops of rain began to fall, and the fire was quenched. All to the glory of God!