Becoming Resilient: How to Recover When You’ve Lost Faith

Tests, pressure, setbacks, failure, and trouble can expose the condition of our faith. We need Bible verses about resilience to help us believe that those challenges don’t have to own us.

Resilience is defined as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, tragedy or significant sources of stress.

No matter who we are, or how life is currently going, one thing that is inevitable is that our faith will be tested.

These challenges can range from our everyday struggles and disappointments to life changing losses. The quality of our faith – our faith in God, our faith in relationships, and our faith in life – is revealed during these times of testing.

  • Be a builder, not a storm chaser
  • Be a learner, not a quitter
  • Be prayerful through failure

Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.

James 1:2-4 MSG

Tests, pressure, setbacks, failure, and trouble force our faith into the open and reveal its true colors. We need Bible verses about resilience like this to help us believe that those challenges don’t have to own us.

What obstacles are you facing in your life that God is using  to mature, develop and prepare you for the next stage of your life?

Be a builder, not a storm chaser

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Matthew 7:24-27 (NIV)

A storm is something that is challenging and disruptive to our lives, and can lead to emotional tumult. Think health, kids, marriage, emotions…all of these areas are essentially out of our control, and can weigh heavy on us if something goes awry.

Storm chasers follow behind storms for a variety of reasons – some are thrill-seekers, some are meteorologists studying weather patterns. In the context of Matthew 7, we’ll define a storm chaser simply as someone who lives in constant reaction to the next storm of life.

A builder, on the other hand, tries to get ahead of storms. Builders spend their time and energy on ensuring that their foundation is as solid as it needs to be in order to stand firm during the storms of life. Being a builder means examining how aligned your life is with the Bible.

Storm chasers focus on:

Emotions – how do I mitigate my feelings?

Circumstances – how do I make my life as smooth as possible?

People – how do I make sure people like me?

Builders are:

Responsive – understand how God is helping me to adapt

Learners – understand how God is calling me to grow

God focused – understanding God is in control, so I don’t have to worry

A builder is resilient because they have worked to build a solid foundation; their faith in God remains intact even when it’s battered by wind, rain, and floods. Let’s assess how we are building and make the choice to build on the solid foundation.

Reflection questions

Do you think you are a storm chaser or a builder? Why?

When you go through storms, do you tend to focus most on people, circumstances, your own emotions, or understanding how God is calling you to grow?

How can you start practicing thinking like a builder today?

Be a learner, not a quitter

5 And have you forgotten his encouraging words spoken to you as his children? He said, “My child, don’t underestimate the value of the discipline and training of the Lord God, or get depressed when he has to correct you. 6 For the Lord’s training of your life is the evidence of his faithful love. And when he draws you to himself, it proves you are his delightful child.”

Hebrews 12:5-6 TPT

When our faith is tested, scripture teaches us that we respond in one of three ways:

Underestimating – we diminish and ignore the value of discipline by minimizing, rationalizing or justifying our actions. Essentially, we refuse to change.

Get depressed – We quit by going through the motions, by being angry or by blaming.

Learn – We embrace God’s training by facing facts, taking responsibility and changing.

Being a learner allows us to build resiliency by facing life challenges with a faithful attitude, instead of getting angry, hard-hearted or depressed.

Now all discipline seems to be more pain than pleasure at the time, yet later it will produce a transformation of character, bringing a harvest of righteousness and peace to those who yield to it.

Hebrews 12:11 TPT

In order to have a transformation of faith and character, we must change our attitude about learning.

Reflection questions

Do you see learning as a pain or pleasure?

How are you responding to God’s training in your life?

How does your view of God need to change in order to embrace his training?

Be prayerful through failure

31 “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat. 32 But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen your brothers.”

Luke 22:31-32 (NLT)

Failure is only fatal when it is absent of faith. After Peter experienced spiritual failure, Jesus encourages him. It’s one of many stories of resilience in the Bible that give us a blueprint for handling discouragement and setbacks today.

Three things we learn from this scripture:

We are fighting a spiritual battle and the fight is for our faith. It’s all too easy to focus on our life conditions or how we feel about the people around us, all the while forgetting that Satan is constantly trying to steal our faith.

Prayer is how we keep and strengthen our faith. We can spend a lot of time thinking, talking, and feeling instead of praying to God. Prayer strengthens our faith.

When we change, we help others to change. We can use everything we go through to help strengthen others.

Faith is what gives us the ability to take anything in life, including our humbling failures, and turn them into experiences that drive us to love others. Prayer helps keep us focused on God throughout this process, so we don’t get stuck in the weeds about how we feel. It is how we rely on God for the strength and resilience needed to learn from our failures and change.

Reflection questions

How is Satan trying to steal your faith?

Are you feeling, thinking, and talking more than praying to God for help?

Whose faith can you strengthen and inspire based on the lessons you have learned through failure?

The following passages describe several ways for your to develop real faith and spiritual resilience. Take time today to consider how you can make a real comeback by tackling these issues.

John 6:63 – Rely on the Word

John 6:33 – Obey the scriptures

Psalms 131 – Repent of pride

Proverbs 14:30 – Deal with Envy

Isaiah 42:5-7 – Change a life

Source:

Excerpts from Becoming Resilient: How to Recover When You’ve Lost Faith

Deep Spirituality Devotionals

http://www.deepspirituality.com

Author:  Staff Writer

December 16, 2019

The Works of His Hands

In late October 2020, my husband and I decided to fix our broken bee. It sat on our porch for seven years; barely surviving a hurricane.

My husband spackled the holes in the bee’s side and stomach. After the spackle dried, I began painting the bee. I couldn’t settle on just several different colors, so I went to the Dollar General Store and purchased some fake jewels. I began to glue the jewels onto the bee’s wings and neck.

Shortly, after I began painting and gluing the jewels on the bee, I had a doctor’s appointment in which, I mentioned to my doctor that I was restoring a decorative bee. He asked to see a photo of it. After he looked at the photo of my bee, he turned to his credenza, pulled out an article and handed it to me. It was titled “The WORKS of His Hands.”

In † Christian Love, Susan Osten

There’s a hole in the bucket

By Stuart Wachowicz

In the amazing catalogue of living things that fill the earth, one discovers a myriad of examples of incredible intricacy that demonstrate just how complex life-forms and their cycles can be.

Flowers, the reproductive organs of flowering plants (angiosperms), are a case in point. We can easily marvel at the delicacy of a cherry blossom, a rose, or a lily. One flower, however, is particularly captivating, both in its design and in the manner in which it conscript an unsuspecting assistant to ensure the survival of its species.

Of Buckets and Bees Coryanthes speciosa and Stanhopea grandiflora, the two species of “bucket orchids,” native to the tropical areas of Mexico, Central and South America, and Trinidad. These members of the orchid family produce a flower that is uniquely beautiful in the plant kingdom. They also have a very sophisticated means of reproduction that requires the services of specific species of “orchid bees.” There are about 250 species of orchid bee, which are some of the most ostentatious of the be kind, noted for their jewel-like appearance (Stephen Buchmann, “Orchid Bees,” U.S. Dept. of Agriculture). Two subspecies of orchid bee, Euglossa meriana and Euglossa cordata, are just the right size, weight, and shape to be of assistance to the bucket orchid (Geoff Chapman, “Orchids…a witness to the Creator,” Creation magazine, September 1996).

Notice their jewel-like appearance.

The males of a particular subspecies of these bees will only visit one subspecies of bucket orchid, ensuring that no cross-Pollination of this delicate flower will occur. Each subspecies of bucket orchid secretes a scented, oily perfume, which is produced in the upper hood of the flower. Because each bucket orchid species produces a unique scent, useful in attracting its own species of orchid bee, and because of the highly specialized process involved, cross pollination is prohibited by design. The scent the males see will only attract a female of his species, maintaining the integrity of the system for both plant and pollinator. The male bees fill special pouches on their hind legs with it, using the perfume to attract lady friends, and they will endure any hardship to smell their best.

The Trap Is Sprung! The upper part of the flower, in which the plant produces its oily perfume, has a waxy surface, made more slippery by the perfume itself. As bees go about collecting their treasure, they usually slip and fall into the lower part of the flower – the “bucket” that gives the flower its name. Above the bucket is a gland that drips a watery fluid through a spigot, keeping the bucket partially filled. This species of orchid bee is just the right size and weight for the remarkable process that takes place during its visit to this fascinating flower. The bee, having fallen into the bottom of the bucket, would perish there in the liquid, unable to escape, were it not for a small “step” on the edge of the bucket. This step is just the right size and shape to enable the bee to pull itself out of the pool.

Alas, however, our bee would remain trapped in the flower were it not for a small tunnel located beyond the step. The tunnel, or tube, is just large enough for our species of orchid bee to pass through, and so he begins his escape. But just as he is about to exit to freedom, his escape tube contracts, holding the bee tightly in place. The contraction of this tube causes the secretion of a small amount of glue onto the bee’s back, but only upon a tiny, targeted area so as not to inhibit the bee’s ability to fly. Then two orange-colored sacs containing pollen (when the flower is in its “male phase”) are pressed onto the glue. It takes around 45 minutes to an hour for the glue to set, after which the escape tube relaxes and the bee flies free, now carrying the only pollen sacs that flower will produce.

Not Done Yet… Our be, despite his harrowing adventure, still has his lady friends in mind, and is in no way deterred from visiting another bucket orchid of the same species to top up his cologne supply. Alas, during the gathering of more scent oil, he again finds himself plunged into the bucket of another bucket orchid. Doggedly, he climbs out of the pool using the convenient step and goes through the now-familiar tunnel of freedom. This time, if the orchid flower has entered its “female phase,” instead of pollen sacs awaiting him at the end of the tunnel, there is a small hook-like structure. This removes the pollen sacs from the bee’s back and causes them to open and pollinate the flower’s pistil, or female reproductive organ, beginning the process leading to the development of orchid seeds, and thus ensuring another generation of this incredible plant.

Bees at the bottom of an orchid’s “bucket.”

Natural Selection Insufficient: Interestingly, even Charles Darwin recognized that there was no indication in the fossil record of the “evolution” of flowers, as he noted in an 1881 letter to botanist Sir Joseph Hooker. Darwin never did offer an explanation as to how a process like “natural selection” was sufficient to create a complex symbiotic (that is, mutually beneficial) relationship such as we see in this instance. In fact, the bucket orchid’s mechanism of pollination seems quite contrary to the norms of Darwinian theory. Process that makes survival more difficult and more prone to failure are supposed by Darwinism to be eliminated through natural selection, yet in the case of the bucket orchid, a complex mechanism that requires a partner with a single sub-species of bee – making survival even chancier – has flourished for millennia. Add to this the need of a simultaneous development of the highly specialized characteristics in the flower and pollinator, and a random process, such as described by Darwinian evolution, is totally improbable mathematically without intelligent direction…

This unique process prevents significant cross-pollination with other orchid species, helping to preserve the genetics of these plants in a relatively unchanged state from generation to generation. Bucket orchids still flourish today, inspiring wonder and joy in those who study them. This complex symbiotic relationship between a specific bee and a remarkable flower can only be the product of deliberate design. Any unbiased mind would have not choice but to agree.

The proclivity of man to deny that this world and the life within it are the products of a Great Designer is not new. Long ago, the great Jewish scholar we know as Paul wrote in frustration of those who find all sorts of ways to try to explain away the obvious:

“What may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse.” Romans 1:19-20

There are few examples that point any more clearly to the creative genius of that Great Designer than that of the little bucket orchid and the tenacious orchid bee.