We can explain the very human effects of faith.
The very foundation is our lack of attachment to this world. We belong to Christ and He’s standing in Heaven. His Presence here on earth is in His people, but we long to see Him face to face. To claim Christ and own no eagerness for His throne is a lie, or at the very least, a monumental failure of understanding. If you cling to this life, you simply do not get it.
But this life does hold one important function: to manifest His glory. This entire realm of existence here below serves no other purpose, and all our activities within this realm aim for that result. What matters in this world most is people, but nothing we do can affect directly whether they respond. We love them and do what we can to persuade them, but it never was in our hands. The only real leverage is expressing that love. If anything in that other person is ready for truth, they’ll respond to that love. It may never come to our eyes, so we act upon the promise no love poured out is ever wasted.
Since we cannot pretend any concern for effectiveness, we aim more at pleasing the Lord. There are times when love does not feel like love to those who cannot understand it. Not everything we do is “nice”. Love is defined in the Other Realm, not by any human measure here. We manifest our Savior’s love, not mere human affection. There isn’t much we can do to reduce the conflict except try to explain when people ask. People rarely possess the sort of understanding to accept even our best explanations. We trust in faith the conflict itself serves God’s glory.
There are some priorities where we will shed our own blood as a sacrifice to His Cross, but we are fools when we say there can be no circumstance when we might be called upon to shed the blood of others. Rare it may be, but if you refuse to fight to keep your own spouse and children safe, you simply don’t understand. That we cannot in faith also let them go when the Lord chooses to take them is the same folly. There are extensions of that principle by which God holds us accountable for the safety of sheep He commands us to pastor. It varies with the individual calling and context; the heart of faith knows. Such decisions are between God and the individual.
That God commands a thing should be all we need to seize the confidence to proceed. An assurance the world will reject our choices is noted before we start. The conflict which plays out could lead to us bearing our own very literal cross. Anything less than that is grace and mercy, because the Fall marks us all for the worst any human can suffer. There are promises regarding His protections in this life, but by no means can we expect to hold the divine reckoning of such with a human calculus. Pain and joy are mixed by God’s hand, and our human comfort is never the priority, but His glory.
So we embrace the call to walk as worthy of that Other World. When we obey, those things we cannot control will surely go according to His plans. We embrace His Laws and His understanding in defiance of all this fallen world, because things will always work out to His glory. Our best hope is to seize the opportunity He offers to participate in His glory. The logic of the Kingdom will never make sense to this world, and will often elude even our best renewed understanding. But if you fail to embrace His teaching and His Laws, you cannot hope for much at all. Your own very internal resolve will be weak and confused, and you’ll be shaken all too easily. Confidence comes from obedience and commitment to an end no man can fathom, not even we ourselves. Miracles attend such a life.
May your faith, trust, confidence and commitment be stirred, not shaken.