Faith…you gotta have it in order to use it.
You can’t step out in faith if you don’t have faith. Faith doesn’t magically appear in our life. It is something that we acquire over time and practice. Each one of us has a measure of faith; some greater, some smaller. The good news is that it only takes a little to do a lot. Jesus referred to this in the Gospel…
Matthew 17:20 (NIV)
Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Notice, Jesus said, “You can say to this mountain…” He didn’t say He would talk to the mountain, but that we are to talk to the mountain. We are to have the faith. Faith moves mountains by either smashing them or scaling them. Faith says “I’m Possible” rather than “Impossible.” It changes the core of your being. The way you live life alters. You see things differently than you did before. It gives you a perspective of perseverance in the midst of obstacles. You know you have faith when your decisions are centralized around God’s plan. It shifts your mindset from what you can do to what God can do through you.
So if faith is such a requirement to experience all of God’s plans how do we get it?
1) By Jesus
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)
12 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Jesus is the author of our faith. He is the initiator of our faith. He is the founder of our faith. Only because of Him can we even have faith. Faith is embodied in Jesus Christ. Remember, the book of James reminds us that without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exist. When we put our faith in Jesus it puts faith in us.
12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.
We come alive in Christ which gives us new faith. You see, our faith is not in ourselves, but in the power of God. Our faithlessness is buried with belief, as our faith is resurrected in Jesus. It’s not that we have faith in Jesus, it’s that Jesus is our faith. It’s He who lives in us anyway, not ourselves.
Galatians 2:19-20 (NIV) 19 “For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Our faith is not placed on God, but from Him. We are in Christ. Our position isn’t based on our condition, it is based on who we are in Christ. All things are possible not because of us, but because of Him. We get faith because we’ve got Jesus. He came to bring us the faith we need in order to live the life we should. True faith shifts the focus off of us and onto Jesus.
2) By Hearing
Romans 10:17 (NKJV)
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Faith comes to us as we hear the Word of God. The more we hear the Word of God, the more faith is awakened within us. And there is a big difference between listening and hearing. Listening is simply our ears picking up a signal. Hearing is when our heart is transformed by the signal. Listening is physical, hearing is spiritual. Many people listen to the Word of God, but only a few hear the Word of God. When we hear the Word of God it revolutionizes our entire outlook on life.
It is therefore vital that we surround ourselves with the Word of God. The more we get into the Word of God, the more the Word of God gets into us. In fact, it is impossible to fully know God without knowing His Word. If we truly want great faith, it takes great commitment. Commitment to seeking Him with all our heart. This means hearing His Word, not just listening to it.
3) By Asking
2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
We are to ask God for wisdom and He will give it to us generously. Wisdom brings faith. When God pours out His wisdom and understanding to us it raises our level of faith. Not asking God for wisdom can easily breed confusion and chaos which results in faithlessness. Wisdom gives us the ideas we need in order to break through the obstacles and challenges in our life. Our future is not a product of the past, it is a product of our wisdom. One idea from the depth of wisdom can change our destiny in an instant. The future gets better when we allow God to guide us there. And always remember that where God guides He provides. If He has called us to it, He will see us through it. His promises stand true even when the circumstances are bleak.
When you ask for faith be willing to do whatever God says. God will not pour out wisdom on you if you are not going to act on it. Asking God for wisdom is not just a request, it is an obedient act to do what He commands. Many people want to do what God wants them to do until they find out what He actually wants them to do. Wisdom will call you to do the most unlikeliest things in the most unlikeliest ways. Spend time asking God for wisdom everyday. Ask with the intention and willingness to respond to whatever He says.