Our Independent Spirit

“Everything is possible for him who believes.” Mark 9:23

I consider myself a man of faith. Yet I tremble when I consider the words of Jesus to the desperate father of the demon-possessed boy; “Everything is possible!” I must conclude then, that my weak faith limits God’s power and effectiveness in the world. With my life I may very well be asking the question, “If you can!” In essence, I may not be the man of faith I believe I am.

Like anyone else I feel great pride when I achieved some great goal. In fact, the greater the challenge I face the greater the sense of accomplishment I feel when I win. I can say, “I did it!”

For most of us, this is part of our fabric. It is who we are at the core, part of our independent spirit. We want to feel that we have control. So the command to pray sounds as though Jesus is telling us to do nothing, but this thought is a product of our unbelief. It is here that we most need help.

If all things can be done in our own power, then there is nothing wrong with forgoing prayer and just doing something—anything. We can live through our passion for His work, but eventually we will run into the kind that “come out only by prayer.”

Some things, many things, most things, nearly all things require more than my power.

While this thought might disturb our independent spirit, we can accomplish some things only by prayer. This is the greater testimony of scripture, “Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty” (Zechariah 4:6).

Our hope is not found in our own power, but in the faithfulness of God. In this faithfulness we can trust, and in that trust is true power, “wonder working power.” “Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the LORD, we trusted in him; let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation” (Isaiah 25:9).

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