“I wish I had more faith.” I have said that to myself so many times in the past year. But haven’t we all said that numerous times? I think many of us are afraid to admit that we want more faith. It is something we pray in the dark, but something we would never admit in the light.
But if someone were to ask me what I wanted from God, I would simply say, “more faith.” I don’t want a job, money, security, more friends, more knowledge, more power, health, safety, or anything else that I should ask for. Instead, I just want more faith.
I wish I had more faith in finances. As I was talking with friends who were doing a church plant, I told them that I wished I had the faith that they had to go out and raise their finances. They just packed up their lives, moved across the country, and trusted that God would provide. In reality, this is an idiotic concept. People who do this usually end up on the street. And in this economy? They must be asking for poverty. But sure enough, God has provided for them. Sure, it has been difficult, but He has provided.
I wish I had more faith in my prayers. When talking to one of my friends about prayer, she said that she prays for the impossible and God always provides. In reality, this is an idiotic concept as well. You are speaking to an invisible being? How is this different than a child and his/her imaginary friend? But sure enough, she has faith that her prayers will be answered. It would be nice to believe that prayers would be answered. But it is difficult to believe in answered prayers when all you can recall is unanswered prayers.
I wish I had more faith in my career choice. I speak with many friends/mentors who know that they are doing what they should be doing. They have received affirmation from other friends. They know because of how the doors were opened to where they are now. They know because of the impact they are making. But what about those who don’t have jobs right now? Are some people called and others aren’t? Is God looking out for some but not for others? Did some people pass God’s test but others didn’t?
I wish I had more faith in the Church. It is difficult to believe in the power of the Church when all you see is the failures of the Church. The bad always hides the good. How can I have faith in the Church when I constantly see people who refuse to go to church because of what the church has done to them? And how can I have faith in the Church when the Church’s response to those people is, “Get over it. We all make mistakes and we all have been hurt at one point or another.” How can I have faith in an organization like that?
I wish I had more faith in God. It is hard to believe in something that you cannot see. It is hard to believe in God when you haven’t seen Him work in a while. You begin to forget about all He has done and focus on all He has not done. A while back, I journaled this:
“God, I know I have seen Your works before. God, I know that you are still working today. But if you could help me out a bit and remind me of what it is like to see you work, I would appreciate that. Because right now, you seem like a vivid dream. I can’t remember if you really did what I think you did.”
That was a dark place. That entry still strikes a chord with me.
I wish this blog post was about how God showed me everything and now I fully believe in Him and will never doubt Him again. But it isn’t. I still wish I had more faith in God. If I had more faith in God, then I would have more faith in the Church, my career choice, my prayers, and my finances. Life would be a whole lot easier if I had more faith. But unfortunately, my faith is the size of a mustard seed…at best.
We have tried to tell people to have more faith in God. If you doubt anything, you just need more faith. In the dark moments of your life, you just need more faith. That is our prescription for everything. Have more faith in God. If I had a dollar every time I heard that, I would not have to have more faith in my finances. Christ tells us in Matthew 17 that faith the size of a mustard seed can move mountains.
The reason we pray for more faith is because a mustard seed is too small. Or at least that is what we think. We are uncomfortable vocalizing our doubts and fears because a mustard seed appears small. We will pray for more faith in the dark but refuse to talk about it in the light. Instead, we put on a mask that we trust in God for everything. In reality, we may be hanging by a thread. We can’t let people know that, though. Otherwise, they will think of us as “less” of a believer.
It is hard to have faith. That is undeniable. Wishing you had more faith does not make you less of a Christian. In fact, it makes you more dependent upon Christ. You recognize your humanity. You recognize your fears. You recognize your inability to trust in something that God could do through you. So maybe less is more. Maybe those who say they have a lot of faith really have a lot of false faith. Maybe they have convinced themselves that they have a lot of faith but in reality, they are plagued with dark and restless nights that they refuse to bring into the light.
Perhaps less faith is more faith. Perhaps it is better to have the mustard seed.