overcoming spiritual confusion

Have you ever been tempted to think that because you were confused or feeling overwhelmed you weren’t as spiritual as you should be? That seems to be the theology of a lot of people. They would have you believe that they have it all together and that if you would just have a little more faith you could too.

I have been tempted to give into that kind of thinking at times, but then I would open my Bible and read things like, “We’ve been surrounded and battered by troubles, but we’re not demoralized; we’re not sure what to do, but we know that God knows what to do; we’ve been spiritually terrorized, but God hasn’t left our side; we’ve been thrown down, but we haven’t broken.” (2 Corinthians 4:8, 9, The Message) In case you’re unfamiliar, the Apostle Paul wrote those words. So I figure, in my less than stellar moments, I’m in good company!

When we find ourselves in difficult circumstances or faced with overwhelming obstacles what should we do? Paul gives us his strategy for trying times in the verses that follow 8 and 9:

1. “We’re not keeping this quiet, not on your life. Just like the psalmist who wrote, “I believed it, so I said it,” we say what we believe.” (13) We must learn to speak out of faith not our fear. It is so important that we expose ourselves to the Word on a regular basis because it is the Word that produces faith in us (Romans 10:17).

2. “So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.” (16) Fear paralyzes us. We must draw strength from the grace God is pouring into our lives and press on.

3. “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (18) We must keep our eyes focused on spiritual truth. That can be difficult at times because, as Paul tells us, our vision is limited by the fleshly nature (I Corinthians 13:12) therefore, we must continually re-focus through the lens of God’s Word asking the Holy Spirit to clear up the blurriness we deal with.


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