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​What to do When Faith is Not Enough

Updated: Apr 4

By Andrena Sawyer

Faith has never been my struggle. In fact, I thrived in situations that required faith. It’s caused me to see God in real ways that only fueled my thirst to see Him demonstrated in even bigger ways.

I remember my sophomore year in college. I knew that there was no way I was going to have the money to cover the balance of my tuition that a scholarship didn’t cover. My father had a candid conversation with me that he would not take me to school that year because we didn’t have a solid plan. The way he saw it (being the rational and protective father that he is), driving me from New Jersey to Washington DC was only a set-up for embarrassment and heartbreak later. My response? That same day, I took the train from New Jersey to New York, then took the bus from New York to DC. I packed enough clothes to last me at least a month, because I just knew things would work out. Sure enough, after a lot of crying, praying and fasting, I ended that year in good academic and financial standing with the university. I went on to graduate in 4 years.

While I was in DC, I thought the Lord was leading me to start a youth outreach in one of the underserved areas of the city. I proposed the idea to a friend who responded, “what if someone gets shot?” He wasn’t asking to discourage me. He was challenging me to think through all possibilities. The truth was, I had no money (barely paid my tuition), I was a foreigner in the area, and my support system consisted of other young adults who were also trying to figure out life. 

I discarded reason (and his questions), and went on to do the outreach anyway. That outreach, Rock, the MIC, lasted for 5 years, and served an average of 150 youth each year. I saw God provide thousands of dollars, some of the most talented (and popular) Christian artists graced the stage, and the most unlikely people connected to serve the community. Faith has not been my struggle. Until recently.

When I decided to become an entrepreneur, I had no idea what it would entail. I knew God was opening some doors. He’d increased my confidence in the abilities He gave me, and the previous seasons brought harsh disappointments that left me broken and with no choice but to seek God earnestly for direction. I was hearing clearly in the  season I made the leap. 

I have watched Him do incredible things through my company, and in me, but He has stretched me in ways that I could never imagine—financially, emotionally, relationally, and physically. I’ve gained and lost weight on this journey, made and lost money and possessions, gained and lost relationships, and sacrificed more time than I can account for. 

A series of decisions recently led me to a crossroads that required me to choose between closing the doors of my business. for good, or pushing through a little bit more, just in case there was the mother load of breakthroughs on the other side. Pushing through has meant having to learn what scarcity looks like (all over again), and constantly rejecting the pressure to live life comparing my journey to others.

Here’s my conclusion: my 18 year old faith is no longer enough. The thrill of believing for the impossible is now exhausting and not as exciting. It’s a perspective that comes with maturity. A good friend once teased me that I was a glutton for punishment. Perhaps he’s right, or perhaps the God of Elijah and Abraham who anticipates needs, and the God of Esther who favors unqualified people, is still working all things together for our good.

What I’ve learned through entrepreneurship is that faith often goes against reason, but God’s nature doesn’t change. He still does very much with very little, and I believe He is looking for ways to demonstrate His glory to us. 

Perhaps the faith He is looking for is not for performing the spectacular for us, but through us, so that His glory remains His own. When our faith of yesteryear is not enough, we must take hold of the truth that we are finite and God is not. Patience is required to seek and wait for the response. He is sovereign and sensitive at the same time. That truth ought to be enough to remind us to take His promises as our own each day, as we wait to see in what new ways He will manifest His glory, grace and kindness to us. ________________________________________________________________________________ About the Author:

Andrena is the Founder of the Minority Christian Women Entrepreneurs Network - a faith-based initiative for women in business. 

She is also the author of several books including The Misadventures of a New Entrepreneur, and The Long Way Home. Follow her online @ Andrena_Sawyer.


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