Faith is like a muscle in our bodies. We are given all we will ever need at the point of our salvation. But, if we don’t often use or exercise that muscle, it will become weak and ineffective.
Jesus said faith the size of a mustard seed could move mountains (Matthew 17:20). Yet, if you and I want that miniscule-sized faith to move mountain-sized objects or circumstances, we need to strengthen it by using it in the small things so it grows to conquer the big things.
In a parable in Matthew 25, Jesus said if we are faithful in a few things we will be given more (verse 21). He also said, “For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have [or, does not use what one has], even what they have will be taken from them” (verse 29). I believe that applies to our faith as well as our gifts and talents. As you and I exercise faith in the little things, then we will be in tip top faith shape for the bigger things.
If your faith is sagging a bit from not using or exercising it, it might be time for a faith lift. Here are three small habits to build your faith:
- Be thankful in all things.
If you want to grow your faith, don’t put conditions or parameters around what you are thankful for. Instead, obey 1 Thessalonians 5:18, which commands us to “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
We all know fair-weathered believers. They are thankful to God when life is good, but they question their faith when circumstances go south. It is God’s will for you and I to be thankful in everything because it grows our faith, refines us, and makes us more like Jesus. Being thankful in every circumstance – even the disappointing, uncomfortable, and painful ones– grows your faith in God’s ability to work all things “for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). You can become light in this darkened and cynical world when you can be thankful in all things, not just the good, comfortable, and pleasant things.
2. Remember all the times God has come through.
Throughout Scripture, God commanded His people to remember the things He did for them. He told them to build altars of remembrance to tell their children and those after them the great things that God had done. God knew we were people prone to forget, and then falter in our faith. So, if we remembered all He had done, we would have faith for the next time the challenging circumstances come.
I have a “remembrance ring” that hangs on the wall in my study. I write on a small piece of paper when God does something extraordinary, unexpected, or just comes through when my family or I needed Him. I then hole-punch those slips of paper and hang them on the ring. At the start of each new year, my family goes through the slips of paper on the ring so we can remember all God did the previous year. You can do this by writing out your own blessings and putting them in a jar or decorative box. Make it a family affair. By remembering what God did in the past, you are strengthening your faith for what God can do in your present and your future.
3. Record your prayer requests and answers.
The more we talk with God in prayer, the more our faith grows. And the more we recount what He did with our prayers, the stronger our prayer life and faith muscle becomes. Start recording your prayer requests in a journal or on a sheet of paper you keep in your Bible. Write the date of your request. Then, highlight those requests that were answered with a yellow pen and record the date they were answered. Or, you may want to leave space for how that request was answered. Just because God didn’t say “yes” to a request of yours doesn’t mean He didn’t answer it. Sometimes His “no” or “wait” are blessings in disguise. Seeing – and recording – how God answered your prayers can build your faith in the God who promises that “no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless” (Psalm 84:11).
Which of these three habits will help grow your faith in the next week? I’d love to hear your answer in the comment section below.