“Jesus said to him, ‘If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.’ Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, ‘Lord, I believe; help my unbelief.’” (Mark 9:23-24).
Here’s a story that brings hope to all of us. It’s about a man whose faith wasn’t perfect, but who still received a miracle from Jesus. (We can read his story in Mark 9:14-32.)
The man’s son was mute and suffered with seizures. The child foamed at the mouth and became rigid. He had been that way for many years. The father implored Jesus to have compassion and help them.
Jesus said anything was possible for someone who believes. The father started crying. Through the tears, he said, “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.” Jesus granted the father’s request and healed the child.
Do you see why this story gives us so much hope? It’s because the man’s faith wasn’t perfect. He knew he had areas where he needed help. I love that we don’t have to be perfect. We just have to ask Jesus to help us in those times when our faith is weak.
In Luke, chapter 17, Jesus’s disciples asked Him to increase their faith. His reply was unexpected. He didn’t tell them to donate more money or do more good deeds or spend more time in church. His answer was, “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”
What’s the lesson there? Well, a peach pit is a very big seed. A watermelon seed is smaller, though still a good size for a seed. But a mustard seed is a tiny little thing, only 1-2 millimeters. A millimeter is 1/25th of an inch. If you take an inch and divide it into 25 pieces, you’ve got something about the size of a millimeter.
Jesus tells them that a tiny mustard seed of faith is just as honored in his eyes as a big old peach pit seed of faith. Faith isn’t a competition where everyone tries to have more faith than someone else, and the one with the most faith wins. The amount of faith is irrelevant.
The issue for us isn’t the size of our faith, but the power of our God. It’s God who moves the mulberry trees.
Let us keep looking to Him. Keep following. Keep believing. Wherever we may be in our journey of faith, God will honor the faith we have. Our faith may be large or small, but the power of our God is immeasurable.
Dear God, your power and wisdom is beyond my understanding. You are more than able to do anything I could think or imagine. Sometimes, my faith seems small. Help me to focus more on your promises and less on my faith. Faith isn’t a competition. Lord, let the faith I have be an example to others and bring glory to your name. I put my faith in you, today and always. In Jesus’s name, amen.