Pastor Encourages Fellows to Live by Faith, Not by Sight Amidst Anxieties

A picture of a man spreading out hands helplessly
A picture of a man spreading out hands helplessly (photo:
By Li ShiguangJuly 10th, 2024

In this era of widespread anxiety, nearly everyone is affected—young singles worry about love and marriage, middle-aged individuals about family and health, and the elderly about their lifespan. Nearly all adults are concerned about their jobs, while children fear growing up and stress over their academic performance.

This pervasive anxiety has evidently influenced the church as well. Many pastors and preachers today experience significant anxiety, particularly regarding financial matters, as most of them earn less than the average local income. Being able to support their families is already a great dream for them.

In this context, Pastor Liang, who has been serving full-time at a church in a southern city for many years, shared some of his insights and experiences. Liang said that God would never tell his servants, "I will give you five million to spend, and your only task is to serve with peace of mind." Throughout the Bible, we rarely see God working in such a way.

Pastor Liang shared that when God wanted Jacob to take his whole family to Egypt, He did not tell Jacob that Joseph had already become the governor of Egypt, so he and his family could boldly go to Egypt and enjoy life. Instead, God said, "I am your God," so Jacob could trust Him fully, as He would take care of everything.

One of human’s greatest weaknesses is the tendency to rely on external, visible things. "For example," he said, "some might think that if I had five houses in the city, then I could serve as a pastor with peace of mind. Because having those assets means that even if I serve full-time as a pastor, 'it wouldn’t be a big problem.' But even if I had five houses, I would still be filled with anxiety as I rely on material things."

If we believe in God's sovereignty, then we can focus on doing what God has called us to do; we don’t need to worry or be anxious about our needs, as God will take care of us. But if our faith wavers, we won't be able to concentrate on our faith, God, and our ministries.

Pastor Liang believes that because some pastors have had their faith shaken, many start taking measures even before bad news happens. It seems like they are being prudent, making up for lost time, and appearing farsighted. In reality, they fall victim to the great curse of legalism. When people's faith wavers and falls, they can only foresee failure with no possibility of victory. It's like a domino effect: once one piece falls, they all collapse. Sometimes God intervenes to stop the second or a particular domino from falling, but there are times when everything collapses in succession.

In response to this, Pastor Liang urged that pastors learn to rely firmly on God. "They should live by faith, not by sight; rely on God, not on wealth or any other power."

- Translated by Abigail Wu

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