What does it mean when the Bible says, “if you have faith as small as a mustard seed… Nothing will be impossible for you,” (Matt 17:20)? So if I have the faith larger than the size of a mustard seed that I would become a cyborg – it would come to pass, right? But unfortunately it hasn’t.
The reason why I haven’t turned into a cyborg at this point isn’t the size of faith I have, but rather the definition of faith.
Faith is not simply belief – which is the most common definition in peoples’ minds.
I believe that God will let me win the lottery. I believe that God will give me a unicorn. I believe that God will go back in time to prevent Spielberg and George Lucas from ruining the Indiana Jones franchise. Faith is not belief. A belief in nonsense. Faith is based in truth. And what is the only thing that we can be sure is truth? God’s Word. So if faith starts with God’s Word, which is ultimately God’s Will, you can’t be treating faith like a magic genie saying stuff like, “I have faith that I’ll get that promotion,” or “That I’ll win the lottery.”
True faith, a faith based in God’s Word/Will, will only be wanting what God’s will is. That’s why Scripture says, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us” (1 John 5:14). So yeah, if it’s God’s will for a mountain of yours to be moved, then of course he’s going to do it – cause it’s his will to begin with.
Another great verse about praying according to his will is James 4:3… “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” Faith begins with God’s Word. But there’s more.
To have true faith, you must Know God’s Word, believe it, and obey it. It’s not faith if you: know Scripture says, “Count it all joy… whenever you face trials of many kinds,” believe you should do it, but don’t do it. So now faith is all these elements:
Faith = Knowing God’s Word + Believing God’s Word + Doing God’s Word
So if God’s Word is the source, we need to ask ourselves, “If I’m trying to properly pray for God’s will, what is God’s ultimate will for me?” God’s ultimate will for you is “to be conformed to the image of his Son (Rom 8:29), and he carries this through trials. (James 1:2-4: Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.).
So what do I do now?
Knowing that God’s goal isn’t that we have financial stability, or a better job, or perfect health, but that it’s to be like Christ – our prayer must reflect that. Our prayer begins with praying for God’s will, which is to be like Christ, which is to have his traits, which are the fruit of the Spirit. During trials, do not first pray that they will be removed, but pray that you will learn what God wants you to learn before the trial goes passes. Wouldn’t it be terrible to go through a trial for nothing, when God was trying to do something beautiful in you through it? So pray according to his will, which is to be more like Christ.
MT 17:20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, `Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us (1 John 5:14).
Take Time To Pray: Ask God to help you live by faith, by praying according to his will, by trying to be more like Christ.