Remembering the Gentle and Godly Wisdom of Oral Roberts

Oral Roberts (Charisma Media archives)

As a student at Oral Roberts University in the mid-1970s, I remember clearly the sermons that were preached by some of the giants of the faith of the mid-20th century.

Corrie ten Boom, Kathryn Kuhlman, Reinhard Bonnke, Elisabeth Elliot, Dennis Bennett and Jamie Buckingham were all a vital part of our spiritual diet in the bi-weekly campus chapel services. However, the voice that I remember as having the most impact on the thousands of students who passed through this Holy Spirit-empowered university was our president himself, Oral Roberts.

I often hear the voice of President Roberts whispering in my heart from nearly five decades ago, "Something good is going to happen to you!"

"Sow a seed to meet a need," is his reminder to me when I need financial resources.

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"Expect a miracle." His sage advice echoes still in the desperate caverns of my heart.

But the wise phrase that has come to me repeatedly during this time of political instability, a fierce pandemic and racial division is this one that President Roberts declared in a chapel nearly 50 years ago, "Doubt your doubts and believe your beliefs!"

There have been many moments in my life as a mother, a pastor's wife and a teacher of the Word that I have had to remind myself, "Doubt your doubts and believe your beliefs!"

We all arrive at the crossroads of life when we must determine what is worth believing and what is necessary to doubt. At that stark place in life's journey, a man or a woman must choose to hold onto the God who is always faithful regardless of our feelings or our circumstances.

Biblical faith is not something that is stirred up based upon exciting music, a smoke and light show or other experiences that will soon fade. Vibrant and lasting faith is the solid response to the eternal truth of scripture; it is knowing that what God has said is eternal and that He is not a God who lies nor does He exaggerate.

Jesus was walking down a dusty road with His disciples one day when they saw the fig true, which Jesus had earlier cursed, all dried up and withered. Peter, the curious and impulsive disciple, took note of the fig tree's stark appearance and said, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed has now withered."

"Have faith in God," was the interesting yet compelling response of Jesus to Peter and to the other disciples at this moment in their journey.

As you examine your doubts and your belief system, perhaps what Jesus would like to say to you today is the same four-word phrase, "Have faith in God!"

The word "have" in this imperative sentence means "to hold onto something." Godly faith is grounded in the God whose very nature is dependable faithfulness. Are you holding onto your faith?

Faith, in essence, means to hold onto the words and the character of the God who never changes, who never exaggerates and who never lies! Sometimes, as I have often done, you will find yourself holding on by your fingernails, but you will continue to stubbornly hold on, never the less.

Don't make the mistake of doubting your faith, but choose to take the advice of Oral Roberts and chose to only doubt your doubts! Hold onto your faith with every cell of spiritual strength that is yours! You serve a God who you can trust no matter what is happening in the circumstances around you.

Hold onto your faith as He is holding onto you!

Carol McLeod is an author and popular speaker at women's conferences and retreats, where she teaches the Word of God with great joy and enthusiasm. Carol encourages and empowers women with passionate and practical biblical messages mixed with her own special brand of hope and humor. Carol has written 11 books, including Significant, StormProof and Guide Your Mind, Guard Your Heart, Grace Your Tongue. Her teaching DVD, The Rooms of a Woman's Heart won the Telly Award, a prestigious industry award for excellence in religious programming.

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