By Maria Fontaine
Faith is a vital element of our lives. Everything about our spiritual life requires faith‚ from the initial step of acceptance of the wonderful gift of salvation to calling on heaven’s power to work miracles.
We need faith every single day.—Faith to believe and receive the written Word, faith to hear from the Lord personally in prophecy, faith to obey and follow the Word‚ faith to lean on the Lord to supply our needs, faith to trust the Lord through difficult times, faith to entrust our lives and plans and loved ones to the Lord’s hands, faith to believe that our prayers will be answered, faith for healing and miracles and for facing a variety of challenging and even impossible situations—faith for so many things!
Principles of faith—a message from Jesus
Faith is not a complex matter. There are complex situations, but faith itself is built on simple principles. Faith is trusting—knowing that I Am, that I love you and want to help you, believing that My promises are for you personally, knowing that I answer prayer, even though that knowledge may run contrary to every one of your natural senses.
Little children can be good examples of faith. They have faith in their parents. They know that if they cry, someone will come; if they are hungry, they will be fed; if they need help, they will receive it. I used the example of children when teaching, calling little children unto Me and telling My disciples that they should humble themselves and receive the kingdom of God and the things of the kingdom like children—trusting, knowing‚ having faith. (Luke 18:15–17; Matthew 18:2–4)
Faith may be tempted to waver, and it may have thoughts of doing so, for you are not perfect. But in the end, faith stands, for it believes in Me and is persuaded that I am able to do what I have promised. (Romans 4:21) Faith is convinced that I am able to do exceeding abundantly above all that you ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20) Faith knows that there is nothing too hard for Me, and that with Me‚ all things are possible. (Mark 10:27; Luke 1:37)
When you have faith, your heart is fixed, trusting in Me, and you are empowered to not be moved by bad news or evil tidings. (Psalm 112:7) You do not cast away your confidence‚ your faith, nor do you waver, like a wave of the sea, driven with the wind and tossed. (Hebrews 10:35; James 1:6) You know that I will come through for you and I will help you to overcome, no matter what the circumstances. That is faith, which greatly pleases Me, for this is the era of faith—of trusting and believing and knowing that I reward your faith. (Hebrews 11:6) “For you walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7)
It is given to every person to have a measure of faith (Romans 12:3)—faith to receive Me and to enter My kingdom. Thereafter, you must build your faith and grow your faith, and there are many ways of doing so. You can ask Me to increase your faith. (Luke 17:5) I am both the author and finisher of your faith. (Hebrews 12:2)
You also increase your faith through studying My Word. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. (Romans 10:17) The more you read and meditate upon My Word, the more faith it will inspire and nurture in you. My Word builds your faith, as do testimonies of faith. When you hear or read of answers to prayer, miracles of healing or supply or deliverance or more, your faith grows. You become even more convinced that what I have done in the past, I am able to do again, and will do again, because I am the same yesterday, today‚ and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)
One of the purposes of this time on earth, these present days, is to help you grow to possess unshakable faith—faith that will not be daunted; faith that will not flinch, nor tremble, nor waver; faith that doesn’t consider the prospect of surrender.
This is the type of faith that will overcome the world. “This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.” (1 John 5:4–5)
Seven tips for strengthening your faith
Take the Word into your life. Drinking in the Word, absorbing it deep within you on a daily basis, and allowing it to become a part of your life is one of the most important things that you can do to boost your faith. “Faith cometh by hearing the Word of God.” (Romans 10:17)
Live the Word. Patterning your life around the principles of God’s Word plays a big role in the strengthening of your faith.
Employ willpower. Faith requires action. Faith means effort. “Faith without works is dead.” (James 2:26) It takes work to put your faith into action, to take a stand of faith.
Praise. Praise is the voice of faith, the fruit of your lips giving thanks to His name. (Hebrews 13:15) Praise invites the fruits of faith into your life.
Expect great things from God. Every promise in the Bible can be yours, whether you feel worthy of it or not. If you do your part to have faith and meet the conditions, He’s promised to fulfill His promises.
Rise above physical situations and conditions. Strive to focus on Jesus and His power when the situations you face seem overwhelming. There are difficulties, there are impossibilities, there are huge needs and sometimes setbacks. Then there’s the God of the universe, who supplied the entire world with water‚ plants, animals, life‚ time‚ order‚ seasons, and much more‚ in only six days. His power to intercede on our behalf is unlimited!
Allow Him to work in your life in the way He deems best. Learn to recognize the way that He uses things in your life to strengthen your faith‚ and yield to them. Grow through the tests that come your way. Hold on when you’re going through tough times. Choose to get the most mileage you can out of whatever battles you face by hearing from Jesus, and by fighting, and then receiving the enhanced faith and confidence that comes once the battle is over. If you make the right decisions‚ then the battles and tests and trials of life will strengthen your faith rather than weaken it.
—Adapted from a message from Jesus
Copyright © The Family International