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  • Kimberly Oden

The Sacred Significance of Believing

Last Saturday, I was walking through a store and saw a pillow with the word, “Believe”, beaded on it. It caught my eye for two reasons. That morning, I had just read Romans 15:13 and the word, “believing” was in it. I had spent the morning researching the word in order to further understand the verse. The second reason the pillow caught my eye was that my friend LOVES that word! I stood in the aisle for five minutes debating whether or not I should buy it for her and then decided it was too garish for her taste!

I went about my business that day and as I closed out the day with deleting the hundreds of black Friday emails from my inbox, one caught my eye. It was an ad for a new book titled, Believe and said, “What you believe drives everything!” I took a screenshot of the email as the Lord had my attention.

The next day we gathered for family dinner, which followed with a little respite on my parents’ living room floor. I awakened a while later as they were watching a Christmas movie. When I opened my eyes, I heard a little girl proclaim, “I am a believer! I am”. The camera zoomed in on a big book with gold shimmery letters that said, “True Believers”. I instantly pulled out of the Sunday slumber and thought, “Ok, Lord! I am paying attention!”

That evening, as I was preparing for reentry into the atmosphere of real life after a week-long break, my heart was heavy. I had walked side by side with a few people praying with and for them for very difficult things…things that just needed breakthrough! I sat in bed pondering the many needs around me, needs I couldn’t address or meet and my eyes began to leak. Markel came in just at that moment. I boohoo’d my heart out and ended with, “Markel, everything just feels like too much! My heart is so heavy and I don’t know what to do.” He was so sweet to reply with this: “That’s the beauty of it, Kimberly. You don’t need to “DO” anything, but simply believe that the Father knows and has all of these things covered. Your discernment is not for you to carry or fix things, but rather so that you can intercede.” To be honest, I didn’t want to pray or extend my belief because in the moment, it felt like a continual hope deferred. Markel closed the night in prayer and the next morning, the Lord showed up yet again with a word about “believe”.

I rewrote Romans 15:13 in my journal that morning and then dug into the word, “believe” again. I discovered some fascinating things.

  • It comes from the Greek root word for faith

  • It is either used of persuading oneself or of the sacred significance of being persuaded by the Lord – it depends on the context

  • It means to expect or hope with confidence

  • It means to credit upon the grounds of authority or testimony of another without complete demonstration

  • The commentary said, “When we believe upon the authority of another, we always put confidence in his veracity”

My One Year Bible for that day landed me in the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. They were brought before for the king because they refused to bow down to the idol he created. They said, “We do not need to defend ourselves. If we are thrown into the fire, the God Whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us. But even if He doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you that we will never serve your gods nor will we worship your idols.” I mean talk about belief in action! The passage says that the king was SO enraged that his face became distorted! Ha! He bound the men and threw them into a fire that was seven times hotter than normal! But then he looked into the fire and suddenly saw four men unbound walking around in the fire! I know most of you know this story but it is SO worth repeating! The king called the men out only to discover that:

  • Fire had not touched them

  • Not a single hair was singed

  • Their clothing was not scorched


They believed that the God in whom they served would save them! They trusted in Him SO much that they said, “Even if He doesn’t save us…” Y’all remember in the bullets above that said belief is either the persuading of oneself or the sacred significance of being persuaded by the Lord? I mean this is a picture of believing God so wholeheartedly, taking Him at His Word with such reckless abandon, that they were willing to be bound and thrown into the fire. I cannot say that my belief is that strong! Oh Lord help me in my unbelief!

The day that I am writing this post my One Year Bible now has me in Daniel 6, the passage where Daniel is thrown into the lion’s den all because he chose to worship the One True God. The next day when the king had the stone removed he was astonished to find that the mouths of the lions had been closed and that not one scratch was found on Daniel! When you read verse 23, it tells you why: “…for {Daniel} believed in his God.” I mean come on! Yet another passage about belief!

As we launch into the remaining three weeks before Christmas I am praying that we as a community would become an, “Even-If-Kinda-People”; that like Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego and Daniel, we would boldly believe in our God who is steadfast, sure and worthy of our trust! That like the Roman centurion who took Jesus at His Word simply because the grounds of authority, we would believe and put our confidence in the veracity of the One True God.

Even if we do not have a complete picture of an answer to prayer, even if we do not see a way out of the fire before us, we would remember the testimony of the One who orchestrated our salvation through His death on the cross! Because He died for us even while we were still sinners, we can expect and hope with confidence! Father God, do not let this season pass without our ability to see and experience the sacred significance of an unwavering belief that is founded alone in Your persuasion. Holy Spirit, do not let us be persuaded by the circumstances we face, but let us choose instead to face the Father and recall his past faithfulness so that we might stand firm in expectation of his faithfulness to come! Jesus, Emmanuel, let your tangible Presence persuade us to believe in You, to place our full confidence in the veracity of Who You are and what You’ve done!

Tangible Tool

Prophesy Your Promise by Bryan & Katie Torwalt => worship song

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