“Have the faith of God!” (Jesus, literal translation from Mark 11:22)
A few days ago, we talked about faith in God… I wanted to return to this phrase, because it is so packed with promise and possibility.
We don’t usually think in terms of having God’s kind of faith. We are usually thinking in terms of working up enough of our own faith to please God.
We are not alone. Jesus’ disciples ran into the same issue. One day, in their own frustration, they cried out to the Lord: “Increase our faith.”
Jesus’ response speaks volumes… “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.” (Luke 17:6) Jesus did not give them some simple steps for growing their faith – He simply stated a fact: “If you have the right kind of faith, the size doesn’t matter.”
But how can that be? Aren’t we supposed to be people with great faith? Shouldn’t we be working up “oodles” of faith to apply to our situations of need? Isn’t that what pleases God?
The answers to all these questions are a bit surprising. God does not offer to increase the (human) faith that we have (after all, a ton of ineffectual faith will never solve our issues). But the tiniest amount of God’s kind of faith has the power to move mulberry trees (and mountains, as well). We do not need more of the useless. We just need a tiny bit of the powerful.
And here’s the really good news. God is a sharing God. He desires to share His faith with us. In fact, He already has. His faith came as part of the package that He offered us when He gave us a new life.
The new you has God’s kind of faith. It’s already yours. You do not have to get it, or ask God for it, or earn it. It is not a special favor given only to the most saintly of God’s people. God gives it to each of us, from the very beginning – to apply to our situations of need, as He directs us.
This points out an amazing principle in this new identity we have received in the new life God gives us in the “new you.” Everything is about using what God has supplied. And everything we need is already supplied.
It is never about what we want – but about what God wants. And it is never about our ability or resources to get things done – it is always about God’s ability and resources. God supplies. We act. Based upon what He wants to do (which we learn by spending time with Him).
This is good news. We do not have to work up enough faith to please God. We just have to use the God-faith He has already given us. “Have the faith of God!” The same kind (and quality) of faith that God, Himself, uses.
The real challenge for all of us is giving ourselves to believe that God has actually already supplied everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). We focus, so often, on what we think is lacking – when God has graciously given all that we need to be what He desires us to be!
Prayer Focus: God, I thank You for granting us Your faith to live this life.