Sun Stand Still
As I’m sure you’ve guessed by now, “faith” is one of my favorite topics of discussion.
Faith is frustrating. It’s a spiritual dynamic that is often aggravating, unclear, and difficult to embrace. Faith often goes against the grain of our better judgment. Simply put – it doesn’t make sense. And yet, when faith is applied – changes ensue.
Pastor Steven Furtick, from Elevation Church (the church Bri and I attend), is not shy about recognizing the inner struggle that is affixed to having faith. He is very well aware of how life and its challenges, as well as our own personal battles, make it increasingly difficult to apply strong faith in our lives.
Though despite this, he forcibly challenges readers in his book, Sun Stand Still, to believe God, and have faith for greater.
The premise of Sun Stand Still is derived from the story of Joshua in the Old Testament. In Joshua 10, a battle is underway in which the Israelites are facing off against the Amorite army. In an effort to defeat the enemy in its entirety, and avoid the prospect of a retreat under the cover of darkness, Joshua asks God for the sun to stand still in the sky until the Israelite army has defeated its enemies.
God answers Joshuas prayer.
Asking God to stop the sun from setting is pretty off the wall. Nevertheless, this is the kind of audacious faith Pastor Steven encourages.
Again, he champions such faith while remaining in touch with the absurdity of what he’s advocating for.
“Frankly, if you don’t find yourself thinking, ‘yeah, but what about…?’ in response to some of the things I’m saying, I doubt you truly grasp what I’m trying to convey…this way of life is counterintuitive and countercultural…so in this chapter – and throughout the rest of the book, really – I’m going to answer some of your ‘yeah, but what about…?’ questions” – pg.79
God & Us
One of my favorite aspects of the book is how Pastor Steven marries the unbelievable things God can do in our lives, with the price that it costs us. To me, this grounds the book. It ensures that a connection is drawn between God, and role we play in seeing Him answer our “Sun Stand Still” prayers.
Pastor Steven writes, “This deal is going to cost you. Significantly. When you ask God to do the impossible, he usually instructs you to do something uncomfortable. And inconvenient”.
Truth is, a life of faith is not an easy one. “Name it, and claim it” ideologies are baseless. Real faith is one that requires discomfort – mentally and spiritually. Mentally, because as mentioned prior, faith is hard to embrace at times. And spiritually, because God must often sever hindrances in our lives to make way for the great things we’d like to see Him do.
Sun Stand Still is a book to read time and again. Written in a way in which faith and spiritual complexities are easily communicated, this book is sure to challenge and encourage you.
It’s one that both Bri and I highly recommend!