I don’t know where I first read the phrase “messy faith,” but it’s been a while and I’ve forgotten. Anyway, it describes the way I feel… sometimes a lot. I guess I’m spiritually conflicted so to speak. Let me explain…
I struggle with doubts… yet I believe. I have ungodly thoughts… yet I work to be holy. I want to serve God… yet I hesitate to follow through. I know the theology… yet in my heart there is trepidation. I get things right… I mess up a lot too. I can give wise counsel… yet it’s hard for me to listen to myself. I have great joy and struggle with depression at the same time. I believe God can do anything… but sometimes wonder if He will.
In short my faith is “messy.”
I get frustrated with people (Particularly Preachers) who speak of nothing but how great, wonderful, blessed, and joyful their life is. I wonder what they’re hiding because nobody’s life is that good… all the time! Jesus’ life was full of sorrows, Paul struggled, David had difficulty as did Peter. It is written that we have to go through many hardships to enter heaven. Paul wrote it is God’s will for us to suffer (Ouch!). Then we read in Acts that our salvation is made perfect through suffering.
One of my favorite people in Scripture is a father who asked Jesus if he could do anything to heal his demon possessed child. He said to Jesus… “I believe, help my unblief!”
If your life and faith is messy (Which is normal and average), I suggest praying “I believe Lord… help my unbelief!!”
In short… life is messy. My life is. Your life is. Everyone’s life is messy.
We will NEVER, this side of heaven, be perfect nor will everything always work out the way we want it to. We do pretty good at times, then we fail. We are successful, then we blow it. We have victories, and we have defeats. Hopefully our ratio of success over failure increases by God’s grace.