When Good Faith Goes Weak

As I sat down to write this post, my mind refused to focus on “me” and my spiritual growth (or lack thereof) this week.  Half Most of my attention went to what I needed to pack for the scout camping trip, what bill I forgot to pay, whether I signed off on my kids’ homework, another mental note to clean the fish tank…

Okay, the fish tank is clean, so I reclaimed a small space in my mind.  But you get the idea, right?

I get so caught up in the little things that I lose sight of my whole self.  I become defined by the things I do.

The time I set aside to explore God’s word and His ways is borrowed to clean the floors “just this once” and before I know it, that time is regularly spent doing other things.  Life’s obligations and commitments are sneaky that way.  In fact, they are so crafty that if I didn’t have this self-imposed mandatory weekly check-up, I might not even realize this time theft happened right under my nose.

I’ve seen what happens when neglect causes strong faith to falter.  Years of not feeding faith left incomplete believers.  Now, in a time of need, they struggle on their own to cope.  Doctors, medications, and support groups have not brought peace.  I wonder if they have prayed about it, or if they even pray anymore.

Witnessing this scares me because it could easily be me in twenty-five years if I don’t make nourishing my spiritual self a daily habit.  I don’t want to suffer with anguish because I forgot how to ask God for direction.  I don’t want to feel abandoned because I forgot to look for God.

I can’t get rid of all the little things vying for my time, but I can pray for myself and my loved ones, and even for strangers who might be looking for a sign that God hasn’t left us, even if we have strayed.  I do pray that hardened hearts will soften and accept God’s grace and lost souls will find comfort by allowing God to carry their burdens.

I don’t know any of the prayers recited at some church services, but I can speak from my heart and I know God can hear me just the same.  I can do this during my commute to work, while I shop for groceries, or when I reflect on what I am grateful for each night.

Life is hard, but it’s more bearable when good faith stays strong.

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14 thoughts on “When Good Faith Goes Weak

  1. Stephanie Bennis October 15, 2011 / 9:17 AM

    I find my own struggles with finding time to focus on myself and my faith with the other little things that always seem to take precedence–or at least I let them. I’ve gotten back into yoga and I run regularly which helps with “me time” but it isn’t a replacement for quiet solitude which allows me to think. I’m still working on that!

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:18 PM

      It’s good to know I’m not the only one who struggles with keeping in touch with faith. I’m glad you’ve carved out time for yourself and I hope you are able to get your “thinking solitude”.

      Thanks so much for visiting and sharing your comment, Stephanie!

  2. Debbie October 15, 2011 / 11:21 AM

    Interesting observations, Janna. Because life comes at us so fast, it’s easy to get caught up in the details, failing to see the forest for the trees. You’re so right in pointing out that a strong faith is what can carry us through life, good times as well as bad. I’ve known people who make daily time for prayer and listening to God; and I’ve known people who pray unceasingly through all the facets of their day. I think, as long as we try to make prayer a solid part of our lives, we’re on the right track!

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:38 PM

      We stand a better chance of weathering the diffifulties of life when we put forth the effort to keep in touch with our spirituality. Prayer is a big part of it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Debbie!

  3. Carl D'Agostino October 15, 2011 / 1:49 PM

    Most of us are too consumed by responsibility and survival to nourish our spiritual dimension so it is good to get a “reminder” post like this from time to time. Even though God don’t pay the electric bill, and the kids’ clothing……

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:41 PM

      Most of us get caught up in day-to-day life, but it’s important to remember that even though God doesn’t pay for our things, He does have the power to make our lives fuller (even with less “stuff”).

  4. pattyabr October 16, 2011 / 10:01 AM

    Raising children is paying attention to the details. I remember being an organizational freak raising my kids. I’m glad I had the energy then because when they were teenagers, my energy level was gone. Also as teenagers, even though I had to pay attention to the details, I was no longer in control of organizing their lives – they were and it was messy.

    Keep praying. It is all good. Any time, place, and situation.

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:46 PM

      Funny you should mention the organizational aspect of child rearing. I’m trying to step back and give them more responsibility for themselves (especially my older son). There have been some late homework assignments, overdue library books, and no water bottle for school, but I’m hoping he will be better prepared for adolescence and adulthood. That being said, I can only let the pig sty room go for so long before we have a mandatory cleaning day 🙂

      Thanks for your comment, Patty.

  5. nrhatch October 16, 2011 / 12:37 PM

    Wonderful post, Janna.

    It is easy to let go of our spiritual practices when we are in a time crunch . . . and that is exactly when we benefit from them most.

    Here’s to finding the right balance between our To Do list and our To Be list.

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:49 PM

      Thank you, Nancy! I absolutely love the “To Do” and “To Be” list. Balance is the key…

  6. jeanne October 16, 2011 / 7:54 PM

    I found a great app on my iphone with a daily bible reading/devotional plan. It has really helped me with my daily walk. The app has several different devo plans, I chose the Rick Warren Purpose Driven Life plan.

    • jannatwrites October 16, 2011 / 10:52 PM

      Wow, that is so interesting, Jeanne. I really wish I had a smart phone sometimes 🙂

      I have a couple daily devotional books (paperback) but I have to admit tha tI’m not good about following them. I just may dust one off and give it another try. Thanks!

  7. pattisj October 26, 2011 / 10:44 PM

    Your last sentence sums it up tidily, Janna.

  8. jannatwrites October 26, 2011 / 11:23 PM

    Thanks, Patti. I’m glad you stopped by!

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