Faith is not denying reality. It’s not pretending you don’t have a problem. Faith is not saying, “I’m not in pain” when you are. It’s not saying, “I don’t hurt” when you do. It’s not saying, “I’m happy” when you’re really grieving inside. That’s not faith; it’s phoniness! Faith is facing the facts without being disheartened by them because you know God is greater than the problem.
There is a brand of Christianity today that basically says, “Deny all of your problems. Just have a positive confession. Name it and claim it.” That kind of thinking did not come from Jesus. That’s Pollyanna, and Pollyanna is not exactly a good theologian.
Faith is facing reality without being discouraged by it. You know that God can change a situation. You can build a family on faith, but you can’t build it on fantasy. You can build a business on faith, but not on fantasy. You can build a life on faith, but not on fantasy.
The key is to look beyond your circumstances: “We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen [the problem] is temporary, but what is unseen [God’s power] is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18 NIV).
If you look at the world, you’re going to be distressed. There are problems everywhere! If you look within, you’re going to be depressed, because there are a lot of things that need changing in your life. But if you look at Jesus Christ, you’ll be at rest. It all depends on where you are focused.
Circumstances are like a mattress: Get on top, and you rest easy. Get underneath, and you suffocate. When you start looking at your problem, you’re sunk. But if you look at Jesus — if you look toward your Deliverer rather than the difficulty — you’ll make it.