As recorded in the gospel of Mark, a concerned father whose son was possessed by a mute spirit asked Christ to heal his son. Christ said that all things were possible if you believe. The father replied: “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” Mark 9:24
In our day it seems to be easier to disbelieve in God than it is to believe. We are living in this very chaotic and contemptuous world causing many people to struggle with their faith. Even if one grew up in the church or had parents that believed in God, unbelief still can be very challenging. Why is this? One of the main reasons is because the old faithful guardrails are being town down. The sacred church of today for the most part is being highjacked by the several movements that are more concerned about the here-and-now rather than the ever-after.
Although God wants what is best for all who believe and serve Him, that does not always translate to financial prosperity. Success to God would be more in acquiring and applying the fruit of His Spirit. One becomes successful to God when they care for the needs of others that may be suffering, feed the poor; give water to those who thirst; or comfort those who mourn. Those committed to doing the Lord’s work will find a seat in His kingdom. Among the rich how many are persecuted for the sake of the Lord? Let’s not confuse man’s definition of prosperity with those who are kingdom bound!
So much of our world is controlled by large conglomerates that run as profitable businesses. It is not that people don’t want to believe in God but that there is so much that pulls them towards unbelief. Most choose to chase the bright shinny objects rather than the unseen and eternal things of God. If you are consumed with acquiring worldly things you won’t have the heart to seek the things of God. The two are not compatible. Either you are for God or for the world. You cannot drink from the cup of demons and also from the cup of God. This does not mean that the rich cannot make it into heaven, but as it is written in the scriptures according to Christ, it is very difficult. Matthew 19: 23-24
People usually seek a religious institution when they feel the urge to get to know God. What would they find today when they go through the doors of this once faithful institution? Will it be the warmth of the light that shines from the Spirit that is in Christ? Or will it be the coldness of stain glass windows, marble pillows, or high ceiling temples made by the hands of man to show off their wealth. God would rather meet those in need in a quiet walk through the woods where your attention would be upon Him rather than those fancy things. He would rather you go into your closet and close the door behind you so you could speak with Him from that private place and He could answer you back where you could hear Him. The Spirit of the Lord is seldom found in those places built to impress man. It is not in the fierce winds that shatters the stones or the earthquake that rumbles throughout the land, but in the still quiet whisper where God calls out to you by name. You would not be able to hear God’s call when your focus is upon those fancy things made by the hands of man trying to lure you into their fancy establishments.
To Christians the true church is the actual body of believers in Christ. Believers of Christ carry His message and therefore are the real church that is not made of brick and mortar but instead of flesh and spirit. Neither is it the large glass cathedrals or the sparkling marble pristine chapels with plush pews… It is the physical body of the believers that IS the Temple of the Lord. It has nothing to do with large conglomerates that are intended for commercial enterprise… that is unless true believers enter such facilities.
Have you noticed who attend those large shinny places? Do you usually see the people like those who Jesus spoke with at the Sermon on the Mount: the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure at heart, the peacemakers, or those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness? These were the souls Christ wanted to reach with His church but such are not drawn to these fancy big houses… nor would they be welcomed in most of them because the rich would not want to share their sanctuary with such people. They do not care to sit next to the homeless, downcast, wounded spirits, the poor and those who are suffering. If the church is being divided between the haves and the have-nots, then where do you think Christ would appear? Do you really think Christ wants to be among the rich and famous rather than with the poor and suffering?
The reason why disbelief is more prevalent among the people who are truly seeking to find the true God is because the true seekers don’t feel welcome in such pristine places. Christ is intimate, personal and transmits from heart to heart, not by sight to sight. When someone does not feel welcomed they usually don’t open their hearts so they sink further back into unbelief. Perhaps it would be best for those well-dressed clergymen to show those who are suffering how to go into a private place and seek the Spirit in secret and hold their hands while they wait on God to answer them.
God is in the air we breathe, brisling through the trees and the open meadows, in the gaze of the sunrise and sunset, in a quiet walk along the shores of a pond, the river’s edge, or the ocean’s breeze. Be still and know that God can have church with you whenever you want to pull your mind out of the world and allow it to focus upon Him. Christ sent us a living Spirit that can be with us and in us when we need to communicate with God. Perhaps everyone who is serious about seeking God needs to find a quiet place and meditate upon God and allow the Spirit to establish the true church in them and then lead them to such a building where true worship can be found.
There are a lot of people becoming disenfranchised with formal worship. For the most part it has been highjacked by huge business conglomerates attempting to draw them into what they are promoting. Just know that church is not the building. It is not the thing that people gather in but instead the gathering of the people whose heart is with God. His presence can be as much in you as it can be in the one who ministers to you. God is not that shinny object that can be seen, but in that unseen thing that shines through the heart. Do not be disheartened by what the world is revealing because God is not always there. He instead lives in the hearts of those who love Him and keep His precepts.
Yes I believe… but I still need help with my unbelief… Selah!