“Don’t Stop – Keep Growing Your Faith”
”Therefore it is our faith that it might be according to grace so that the promise might be sure to all the seed…” (Romans 4:16)
Winston Churchill once said of the profound determination of the USA these words: “The United States is like a giant boiler. Once the fire is lighted under it, there is no limit to the power it can generate.” Doubtless these words were a prophetic utterance that was underappreciated in the moment, but proved their weighty truthfulness in time. Churchill discerned the providential hand of God on this great nation and it caused his words to be seasoned by a faith that was unusual.
Who we are and what we do in the name of Jesus Christ is firmly placed upon the table of faith. Our hope is rooted in faith, faith of the promise that Jesus has gone to prepare a place for us. So what do we do when our faith is run into a wall that is hindering its proliferation and it seems to have tapped out. Like a rising tide its reached its high water mark and not is receding at best. Do we shift into complacence and setup a permanent dwelling there, never to shift into a higher gear of faith? God forbid!
The bible says, “Abraham believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness,” (Genesis 15:6) and we have inherited the benefit of the promises because we dare to believe. That belief is a progressive and compounding belief. Furthermore, the Bible tells of a conversation that Jesus had with His disciples which was recorded in Mark 4. This was during a journey on the sea and the Master was fast asleep despite that the winds were tossing high such that the boat quickly filled with water. His disciples were very concerned and Jesus was comfortably asleep.
Finding Him asleep the disciples woke him and questioned his care for them. To this Jesus responded by calming the storm and then asking them why did they have so little faith? They had the promise of God; they had the presence of God; and yet they were doubtful and not faithful. It is important to clarify that Jesus was not saying that they didn’t have any faith at all, but was contesting that their faith level had not improved, grown, or elevated although they had been around Jesus. Being near Messiah and experiencing teachable moments should have produced a Davidic faith in them all; a faith that would empower them to stand before a giant and a storm without wavering on the stance that they would emerge victorious. How do you stand in the face of your storms? Do you reach for your Ebenezer Stone, your stone of help, confidently assured that you are victory?
From this biblical account we see clearly that you and I must have faith but also not be settled in our faith whereby it isn’t strengthened and stretched to become greater. One reason is that like the disciples, we don’t know when a test or trial will come. We don’t know when the gusts of wind will drive storm clouds over our head. We don't have a warning all that time that trouble is on the doorstep.
So not only must our faith graduate, but our faith must be ready at all times. Jesus didn’t announce the pop-quiz to the disciple beforehand, although he knew that it was coming. As is common to man, once the test is revealed, many stagger in shock. “He [Abram] staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; and being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.” (Romans 4:20) The only way to not stagger at test of our faith is to be prepared. Build your faith in good times and when the tough times come you too will be able to fluff your pillow and sleep in peace, confidently depending on the faithfulness of God's word.