It is no secret that the Christian life is a life of faith. The Bible defines faith as the assurance of things hoped for, and the conviction of things unseen (Hebrews 11:1). According to this definition, faith is not just a shot in the dark. It is not a, “blind trust in the face of contrary evidence.” Instead, faith is a confident trust in the eternal God.
The problem is, sometimes our faith is lacking. I think it is clear in Scripture that every Christian battles with faith. Every Christian is tempted at times to lean on their own devices rather than God.
We even see this with Jesus’ disciples. Time and time again Jesus called them out for their lack of faith. It usually came in the convicting and poignant phrase, “O you of little faith!”
The words “little faith” come from the greek word “oligopistos” which means, “ineffective,” “defective,” or “deficient” faith.
After reading every instance in Matthew where Jesus called people out for their lack of faith, I became convicted! I realized that a lack of faith was always accompanied by at least one of three things… Fear, anxiety, and a missed opportunity for God to display His power.
Fear – And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing.” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O YOU OF LITTLE FAITH?” (Matthew 8:23-27, ESV)
Anxiety – “And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O YOU OF LITTLE FAITH?” (Matthew 6:27-30)
Missed Opportunity – He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O YOU OF LITTLE FAITH, why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:25-33, ESV)
I know that I am lacking faith when I am afraid of the storm. I know that I am lacking faith when I am anxious about tomorrow. And I know that I am lacking faith when instead of trusting God to do the miraculous, I sink in my doubt. What about you? Where does your faith need to be strengthened?
Lord, help our unbelief!