Do you sometimes cower at your circumstances, wondering why your faith isn’t up for the task?
How much faith we have is directly proportionate to how much faith we practice…or exercise. Last week I shared with you three small habits to grow your faith. Here are four more small ways you can get your faith into tip top shape.
- Take time to praise God daily.
This is different than thanking God. Praise is adoring God for who He is, not just thanking Him for what He has done. Our gratitude can sometimes be focused on us and what we want, and how God pleased us. But praise moves us out of the picture and is centered on God’s character and attributes.
There are many ways we can praise God creatively. For example, praise God through the alphabet by choosing an attribute of His for each of the ABCs: “God, You are amazing. You are beautiful. You are capable. You are deity. You are everlasting…” Or take one letter a day and praise God with as many words that start with that letter that you can think of. For example: “God you are capable. You are compassionate. You are caring. You are the Comforter.” As you praise Him and remind yourself of His attributes, you are recounting your reasons for having faith in Him.
- Ask for divine appointments.
I believe every day there are God-appointments for us to live out our purpose, impact others eternally. and bring glory to God. We just need eyes to see these divine appointments and boldness to act upon them.
Over the past five decades of walking with God and both seeing and missing divine appointments, I’ve learned that when I specifically ask for divine appointments to serve someone, make a difference, glorify God, or share the Gospel, God gives them to me every time. Perhaps by asking for them, I am more on the alert to recognize them when they appear before me. I’m convinced every time you ask for a divine appointment (or for eyes to see the one already in front of you), He will provide it, too. That conviction is based on 1 John 5:14-15, which tells us if we ask anything according to His will He hears us and if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we will receive what we’ve asked of Him. It’s definitely God’s will that we partake in His divine appointments and the “good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10 NASB). So, ask for divine appointments – and then act upon them – and it will build your faith.
- Ask big things of God.
Scripture tells us we do not have because we do not ask (James 4:2). I believe God is waiting for the challenge, for us to ask so big and exercise so much faith that we are convinced when He answers that it had to be Him. Of course He can provide your sustenance as you pray “Give us this day, our daily bread” (Matthew 6:11) and care for His own when you pray “Please bless my church and the missionaries.” But ask Him for something specific and something too big for you to accomplish on your own and it will strengthen your faith each time you witness God come through and you realize it wasn’t a coincidence or a result of your own efforts.
Unleash the wonders of God by asking for what only He can do. (I’m not referring to asking that you win the lottery so you can give half of it to your church, or praying that you be promoted at your job so you can buy that multi-million-dollar home). Ask according to God’s will. Ask in Jesus’ name – which means asking God the Father for something that Jesus, His Son, would ask for. Ask on behalf of Jesus, so God will be glorified. God loves to answer big prayers. He is the God of the impossible. And without faith it is impossible to please Him (Hebrews 11:). So, please His heart – and build your faith – by asking big.
- Whisper His name.
There are times we need God, but we just don’t know what to say or where to begin. Start by saying His name and then speak your heart’s cry. Scripture says there is power in the name of Jesus, not only because “Salvation is found in no one else” (Acts 4:12), but because Jesus responds to His name when His loved ones call to Him.
The writers of the classics called this type of whispering cry “breath prayers.” My breath prayers to sense His presence are “Jesus, I need You” or “Jesus, give me a heart for You.” Calling His name just as often as we breathe is one of the simplest ways to sense His presence and remind ourselves that He is there. I believe the simplest of cries are the ones that penetrate His heart –and ours – the quickest. And when we call on His name and sense His presence, it builds our faith.
Which of these ways to grow your faith will you focus on this week? I’d love to hear it in the comment section below.
Cindy, I really enjoy your writing and sugestions.
I am 83 and am a long time believer. I’ve had a close relationship with Jesus since childhood and love him and his way.
I was baptized at 8 and again at 15, and loved living dependent on him.
I was not mature enough to withstand a tragedy that hit me unexpectedly and I wet astray for a time, was miserably unhappy until I repented and returned to my faith in him. I felt he was with me and was saved from many dangers situations, always giving him the glory.
First a reason I can’t explain I feel out of touch with him though I pray several times a day, pour my heart out to him, and read my bible everyday with study and praying to understand it.
I some how feel alone and can’t seem to get back the closeness I felt, like his presence. Although I do feel peace through prayer some how I feel I’m doing something wrong.
I would appreciate your suggestions.
Sincerely, Ruth Murray
Scripture says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” I don’t think you’re doing anything wrong. We know from His Word that He never leaves us (Hebrews 13:5) so you don’t need to fear you are alone or outside His presence. Perhaps God is growing your faith right now by trusting you and your relationship with Him through this time of silence. The writers of the Christian classics experienced silent times with God (I believe it was St. John of the Cross who called it “the dark night of the soul”). Just like sitting in the quiet with a loved one and not feeling the need to say anything— just experiencing the peace of one another’s presence — perhaps that is what God wants you to experience with Him right now. After all, faith that requires feelings (in order to know He is there or to sense His presence) isn’t faith at all. Trust His Word and His presence.
I love the ways we can praise God based on some good techniques like praising Him according to the alphabet or using one letter to proclaim His qualities that impact my life. I have started keeping a gratitude journal but need to be more diligent in listing what I encounter each day to record my record of His care and love. Thanks for your encouragement to daily lift up our Lord and praise Him for all He sends into our lives. He is worthy of our praise and daily loads us with His blessings.
Thanks, Kathleen, for your insights and I like your idea of keeping a gratitude journal. 😊
I am truly encouraged by your post today. It has blessed my soul🤗
Thank you, Debbie. I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment.
I’m asking a BIG thing of God. A greater miracle than I’ve ever asked or prayed for. My faith is on the line! Thanks for the reminder that our God is a God of the impossible.
Thanks, Kelsey, for letting me know how to pray for you. Lord, thank You that Your Word reassures us that nothing is too difficult for the Lord. Please honor Kelsey’s faith in You and come through for her in a mighty way In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Always enjoy your newsfeed. Thank you for sharing your stories with us
I will focus on divine appointments.
Cindi, thank you for this article three small habits to your faith it helps me to grow closer to God.
Thanks, Angie, for reading. I’m glad it helped you. 😊
Hi Cindi. God is faithful concerning His promises. A few weeks ago I was walking home and I was stopped by this elderly man. He looked at me and said, “you are protected.” I said “thank you.”. He then asked if he could pray for me, so we found some shade from the heat and he prayed for me for a bit. When he was done, he told me over and over, you are so loved. You are protected. And not to worry about the things around me. Found out his name was “Adon” he came from Mt Olive, Jerusalem. Adon means Lord and Master I think. Something changed in me that day and I was so grateful.
I lost my oldest sister who suffered with cancer for years this past week. I miss her, praise God for her, and know she is with the Lord and at peace.
Wow, thank you for that story, Ramona. Things like that don’t happen every day. To be stopped by a stranger who asks if he can pray for you and then repeatedly tells you that you are loved on a day that you so needed to hear it makes me think you might have been entertaining an angel unawares, as Hebrews 13:2 tells us. Whomever it was, heavenly or earthly, I am praising God for giving you just what you needed that day. He is a good, good Father. And He knows His precious daughter, Ramona, still needs to be reminded of that from time to time. 🙂 Thanks for keeping in touch, dear friend. 🙂
thank you so much for your articles, it has opened my eyes, I am still learning to grow faith in God.
You’re welcome, Velile. I’m glad you’re finding my blogs helpful. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.
Cindi—Your words are always encouraging & just filled with God’s compassion! Thankyou:)
It just reminds me/us that we All can spur on one another in Love & Good Deeds!
What I’m truly embracing in a 1st John study is that I need to put God’s Love 1st and the other as far as deeds follows right behind it!
GodBless you & your Ministry
Thank you, Cheryl, for your comments. Putting Him first truly causes everything else to fall in line doesn’t it? (Matthew 6:33). Keep in touch. 🙂
I have been praying for my son and his family. First, that they will attend church. They recently moved to a new town and have not attended anywhere since the move. Secondly, that they will know and serve our Lord. Thirdly, that they will have my two grandsons in church and teach them to know the Lord. I have not been as diligent in my prayer as I know that I should be, but I’m going to begin praying “big” and believing that the Lord will answer my prayers. I believe in answered prayer. It has been proven to me over and over!
Thank you, Connie, for sharing what’s on your heart. Your Heavenly Father loves your sons and grandsons even more than You do and He desires their spiritual health and growth, too. Your confidence, as you pray for them, is found in 1 John 5:14-15: “This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him” (NASB). Ask boldly. He is capable. 🙂
I so enjoy all your writings Ms. Cindi. Hard times have fallen on me several times in as many years and your writings always lift me in the direction I keep falling away from. Living in my camper for a few months now, cooler temperatures are arriving, so asking for something Big. God Bless You Ms. Cindi and your writings ❤️
Dana, thank you for your kind words. And you’re welcome. I am grateful my blogs come at the right time to encourage your heart. This is my prayer for you: Lord, You are aware of Dana’s desire to live closer to Your heart. Pull her close, make her ever aware of Your presence, and come through for her in a big way. Show her where Your provision is for her and keep her warm and full of joy in Your presence (Psalm 16:11) during the coming months. In Jesus’ name, Amen.