Sunday, October 31, 2004

Faith and the Mustard Seed

I just had a few thoughts I wanted to share with you tonight.....

"And He said to them, "Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you." -Matthew 17:20 NASB

"And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you." -Luke 17:6 KJV

How big is a mustard seed? Jesus is telling us in these two verses, how little faith we actually have to have to accomplish great things, yet even that much faith is unattained by most people. So it helps to get a visualization of exactly how big a mustard seed is. The seed that Jesus was referring to was probably the black mustard seed, which was the smallest seed ever sown by a first-century farmer in that part of the world. ("Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field: Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof." -Matthew 13:31-32 KJV)

So think for a moment about the seeds that you know. Take for instance a sunflower seed. A sunflower seed is very tiny. And to think that a mustard seed is even smaller than that. Now put that in perspective with Jesus saying that is all the faith that we need to move a mountain!

Why am I explaining all this, you might ask? To show that we, as Christians, generally do not have the faith that we should. We trust God to take care of us and supply our needs, but then the first time a bill comes due and we don't have the money to pay it, we start moaning "Oh, whoa is me....what am I going to do????". It's like we trust God for the little things, but we don't have the faith to believe that He can take care of bigger things.

Now keep in mind, that this is the same God, who made the blind man to see. He is the same God who raised Lazarus from the dead. He is the same God that healed the woman with the issue of blood (who, by the way, doctors could do nothing for!). He is also the same God that made everything that we know come into existence. He made the dark night and the light day. He formed the earth and the stars. He created every living creature. He even formed man from the dust of the earth. So why can't we trust God to take care of the things in our lives?

Mostly, I think it is because God is so awesome, that His work is so far beyond our comprehension. We believe that He can do all these things, yet we can't fully understand HOW He can do all these things. After all, His ways are not our ways. And since our mind cannot totally comprehend the magnitude of God's ability, it is sometimes hard to allow ourselves to depend on Him for everything that we need in our lives.

That is why we need to push that unbelief from our minds, and trust with our hearts. The Bible defines faith as this: "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." -Hebrews 11:1 NIV.

Our God can do all things. There is no problem too big or too small for Him. But we have to find the faith within ourselves to call God's plan into action. God is a loving God and will not force Himself on anyone. He wants us to believe in Him and what He can do. Otherwise, He cannot get glory from the result. Think about it like this: if you pray and pray for a new home, but you are not really sure that God will send you one, and then you get a new home, you may not be so willing to say it was God who gave it to you. But if you pray, believing, and having faith that God will send you a new home, then when He does, you are going to give God the credit for that new home. Because you are going to want to tell others "I KNEW HE WOULD DO IT!!"

Faith is a hard thing to hold onto sometimes. Just because of pure human nature, it is sometimes hard for us to have even faith the size of a mustard seed. But God loves to work through faith. To show the believer that He WILL do what He said He would do.

Now that we have that out of the way, let's talk about GETTING faith. Faith is something that you have to acquire. You don't just wake up one morning and say, "I believe, and I have faith that God will do everything I need Him to." and live the rest of your days with that conviction. There are things that happen that test our faith. These are called trials. Sometimes you may be going through a hard time in your life and you don't know why. It could be that sickness has come upon you or you are having financial difficulties. Whatever the situation, you can be sure that God will get the glory from it. A lot of times it is also to increase your faith. Think about a body-builder. You see these men (and women) that lift large objects like buses and you wonder how in the world can they do that! Well you can be certain that they didn't just go out one day and lift up an 18-wheeler! They had to work up to it. They started by lifting small weights. Maybe as small as 10 or 15 pounds. Then gradually, they work up to lifting larger weights: 50 and 75 pounds. Then they move on to lift even larger weights: 100 and 200 pounds. And so on and so forth. As they build up their muscles, they are able to lift larger and larger amounts.

We need to build up our spiritual muscles. And sometimes trials are the "weights" we use for doing that. I can often go through a trial and start to think "how am I going to make it through this?", but then I can look back at another situation God has brought me out of and I think "well, if God brought me through that, then He can bring me through this." That is exercising my spiritual muscles, which is FAITH. Every time we go through something, it helps to better prepare us for the next time we have a problem. And as long as we can stay in tune and in step with God, we can build up our faith and become stronger Christians.

I hope that one day I can build up my faith to where it is the size of a mustard seed. I hope you strive for that too!

Until next time, be blessed.......


1 comment:

Anonymous said...


That was great. I really enjoyed that. It is nice to really think about it. Keep up the good work! Excellent topic!!!

Kristy Howard