Faith Under Pressure

Scripture Reference: James 1:1-12

Life is not a cakewalk or a bed of roses all of the time. We know this but that doesn’t make life’s pressures or pains any less difficult. When our faith is being tested, we can feel alone, weak, defeated, anxious, and overwhelmed. Notice I said, “feel.” When life happens, the natural instinct, normal reaction is to feel first — as long as we’re human this will be true. Feelings tell us what to think about what we see.
We are never ready for a test, we can only be prepared to grow. God knows how to grow us because He created us. God doesn’t cause everything that happens in our life but He causes everything to work together for the good (Romans 8:28). Pressure busts pipes, and when the enemy has us under pressure, he usually has us believing and thinking things that cancel whose we are, who we are, and what the truth is (2 Corinthians 10:5).
No matter what the trial or pressure is, even if we’ve caused it, God is faithful (1 John 1:9). The bible says, “…And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). When we find ourselves under faith pressure, we have to fight every temptation to let emotions override our truth.
Confidence releases pressure. The bible says, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30). In other words, God’s power increases as we release the pressure of doubt, fear, and anxiety through trust in God and hope in the divine assurance that no weapon formed against us will prosper, that with God all things are possible, that he who the Son sets free is free indeed, that every setback is set up and every miracle needs a mess. It’s not easy to turn off emotions or pretend as if hurt does not hurt — decreasing does not mean to dismiss what happened, it means to intentionally surrender emotions that stand between us and doing what beasts do, what greatness does to honor self.
Some have been tempted to believe that trials or pressure only comes to those who lack faith. Not true. Trials and pressure do not discriminate and they have no respect of person. In fact, without pressure faith would not grow — faith grows when our trust in God grows: “…When I am weak then am I strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10). God allows our resistance to cause pressure to grow us beyond our comfort zone. Destiny does not come to where we are, we grow to it.  The pressure is pushing you into destiny love, destiny joy, destiny peace, destiny visions.
When someone leaves your life, that’s not the test. The test and the pressure is whether or not we will trust in God’s word and “lean not to our own understanding,” about a season. God said, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11). This is God’s covenant with us, this is our pressure release valve — Hope and confidence in God’s promise is the only way that we can release the pressure that comes from the weight of hurt, fear, and failure.
Releasing weight is not easy. Releasing hurt is not easy. Pressures in life don’t come from easy issues. Conflict, guilt, disappointment, struggle are emotional attacks that will rage, war, and battle against us until we find the courage to hope in the Lord and walk in the strength that comes from releasing and being set free from the emotional weights that cause our pressure (Hebrews 12:1).
The bible says, “…Weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5); the morning of our joy — in any situation, trial or test, is the moment when we rise up in faith and tell our emotions, “Peace be still.” The morning comes when faith overrides what we see and confidence in our truth declares the victory, the healing, the recovery, the breakthrough, the divine intervention — in advance.  In other words, morning comes when we tell hell, “No, not today, not this time, not as long as I’m breathing.”
Life will sometimes blind you, people will sometimes hurt you, jobs will sometimes lay off, losses will occur and life lessons will come but God’s grace is sufficient to endure, to stand up in it, and release the emotional pressure that causes us to walk by sight and not by faith. It takes work, it takes time, it takes prayer for strength and courage to walk out of emotions and walk in power. But there is no other way out.
Stand in the faith. Focus on the release. Know that when you’re in life’s gym, you’re getting stronger, better and wiser. You might not see it or feel it right now but you are a miracle in the making — pressure produces diamonds. Grow through it, don’t die to it. When life works you out, do your faith work and remember, God is faithful to your faith!


Share and be blessed.
Pastor Patrick