Asking In Spite of Unbelief
Written by Camille Etienne -- Nairobi, Kenya Friday, 09 May 2014 13:01
I was reminded recently of the father of the demon possessed boy and what Jesus said about his unbelief.
Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?”
“From childhood,” he answered. “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.”
Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”
The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up. --Mark 9:21-27
The boy’s father doubted that Jesus could fulfill his request, and still Jesus did what he asked for. The key is that the father was honest with the Lord about his doubts. God desires honesty from the heart (Psalm 51:6). I often feel like God will be disappointed in me if I ask him to do something while doubting. And I don’t want to disappoint God, so I don’t ask. Sometimes, I will only stop doubting after God does what I ask for (John 20:24-28). Jesus’ response to this father reminds me that God’s hands are not tied because of my unbelief, and I need to ask anyways. In a way, asking when in doubt takes faith: it takes faith that God’s kindness is not dependent on my belief; it is true in spite of my unbelief. I want to encourage you, my fellow single disciple, to embark with me on this journey of complete honesty with God so that he can help us overcome our unbelief and take us to new depths of faith.
Published in Studies, Lessons & Devotionals