Sunday, 25 February 2024 04:48

Growing your faith to move mountains! - Taiwo Akinola

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Taiwo Akinola Taiwo Akinola

We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth ~ 2 Thessalonians 1:3.

Introduction:

Faith is a quintessential faculty that must be allowed to fully develop in us. It’s the incontestable means by which we can offer remarkable kingdom services, develop an honorable character, and obtain a good report in God’s trustworthy assessment.

Faith is a living thing; indeed, a living power from heaven: “faith is…”(Hebrews 11:1). It’s firm trust and sound confidence in God and the integrity of His Word (Hebrews 3:14). Faith substantiates the promises of God, making them present realities to us.

The assurance of the things hoped for, whatever they are, is available to us through the assent of faith because faith infers the reality of the objects believed for (Hebrews 6:5-6). Faith is an agreement with the truth that’s credible upon the testimony of God as found in the Bible.

Faith deals with spiritual and invisible things. It proves to the mind the reality of things hoped for, and gives the believers the “convincing proof” of things not yet seen.

By faith, our souls can see the buried past, the unseen present and the unpredictable future. Faith is a firm persuasion and an unyielding expectation that God will perform all He has promised to us in Christ.

There are different levels/kinds of faith: little faith (Matthew 6:30; 14:31), mustard seed faith (Matthew 17:20), great faith (Matthew 15:28), strong faith (Romans 4:20), living faith (Galatians 2:20), steadfast faith (Colossians 2:5), and sound faith (Titus 1:3).

Every believer has faith in a measure, as a gift from God (Romans 12:3). However, our faith must grow adequately for it to produce our desired expectations (Romans 1:17). It must be bold in speaking forth God’s promises (1Timothy 3:13; Romans 1:8).

We must develop our faith, otherwise it will naturally ebb away  because of the unpalatable winds that occasionally blow around us (Matthew 7:25-27).

Faith is never static. It is either growing, diminishing or withering. Sadly, faith can wither without the owner knowing that something precious is slipping away from him. Hence, our Lord Jesus Christ warned the Laodicean church against such an ugly scenario (Revelation 3:14-22).

We cannot truly live without faith (Habakkuk 2:4). Yet, the devil incessantly hunts it in order to rubbish our Christian testimony (Hosea 7:8-10)! We must therefore never become careless with our faith; rather, we must always strive to maintain and even grow it.

In Matthew 17:14-21, a man took his son, who was tormented by the spirit of lunacy, to Jesus' disciples for healing. But they couldn't cure him. The man then went to Jesus, and He immediately cast out the devil with a mastery touch of authority.

Now, just like every serious-minded learner would make recourse to his teacher whenever the occasion demands, Jesus’ disciples privately asked Him why they weren’t able to cast out the despicable spirit from the boy.

Jesus told them that it was their unbelief that made it impossible for them to cure the boy. This is always the case with us when we refuse to grow our faith as we ought to.

Unarguably, the disciples then were on a learning curve, and hadn’t attained a spiritual level of faith required to heal the boy. Nevertheless, Jesus still reprimanded them, calling them a “faithless and perverse generation”, because He had expected they would learn fast enough to grow their faith to a degree of kingdom relevance (2Timothy 3:5-7).

Understanding The Mustard Seed Faith!

Of a truth, Jesus clearly said that anyone with “faith as a grain of mustard seed” can move mountains (Matthew 17:20). But, this is one of the most commonly misunderstood passages in the entire Bible.

The “mustard seed” kind of faith is often roughly interpreted as “just a little bit of faith to do great exploits”. Some people therefore become content with their ground-level, puny faith. Undoubtedly, this wasn’t the intention here.

Jesus didn’t mean that our faith should be small, and remain so. Little faith doesn’t accomplish big things, only big faith does. Anything beyond your faith level remains undone! It certainly takes full-grown faith to move mountains (Matthew 17:16).

“Mustard seed faith” refers to the kind of faith that can grow to the extent that it can produce signs: heal the sick, cast out demons and wrought wonders. It’s that “little faith” that grows and eventually moves mountains.

Jesus explained this in Matthew 13:31-32, saying, “The Kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field: which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof”.

Our faith is expected to grow to the extent that our lives become a pleasant fragrance of God's grace, that we become solution-bringers to our world, and that we begin to touch other destinies just like birds of the air find a haven in the enormous tree that grew out of the tiny mustard seed.

Faith has always been the mark of God’s servants, from time immemorial. The disciples had faith, otherwise they wouldn’t have prayed at all. It was just not enough. We must be determined to develop our faith!

At the onset, we don't have to go in at the deep end, but we must start where we are and steadily increase in it by believing God for small things and then graduating to higher things. Thereafter, our faith can move any mountain (Mark 11:22-23).

Necessary Conditions for Faith To Grow

Faith isn’t a matter of works, soulical activities, or something that comes about as a result of our emotional rollercoaster. Developing our faith is about being increasingly focused on God's Word, relying on His grace and following Him in intentional fellowship (Ephesians 2:8-9).

A conducive atmosphere is highly essential here; otherwise, our mustard seed faith won’t grow. It may even lose its potential. The soil is certainly important. It must be fertile and very nourishing. This refers to a well-prepared and well-watered heart, always eager to hear the Word (Ephesians 5:26).

Albeit, hearing the Word is more than a mere audible perception. It entails obeying it as well (James 1:22). Disobedience hinders growth. Your faith cannot grow beyond your obedience.

There must also be good “sunlight” for our mustard seed faith to grow  (Malachi 4:2). When our lives are exposed to Jesus' light, we become energized by love, and we certainly produce bountiful yields (Galatians 5:6).

Furthermore, prayer and fasting are very essential to the administration of faith and power in the Holy Ghost. Prayer and fasting speak to death. Before our mustard seed faith will sprout, grow and produce, it must die first. The way up is the way down!

Prayer and fasting require a lot of discipline, diligence, determination and perseverance! Fasting is a valid means of dying to the flesh, and when it’s coupled with prayers, we become finely-honed to pick the signals from the invisible realm.

Friends, your faith is very precious! The glory of God shows in your life only to the extent that you have grown your faith. Guard it jealously; don't trifle with it, and don't allow anyone (or anything) to steal it!

Faith grows by speaking right words (Revelation 12:11). If your faith is not sown, it will lie dormant and useless. There’s an incredible power in the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). Moreover, the mouth of the righteous is a well of life (Proverbs 10:11).

Never side with Satan! Take side with God by saying what He says. Believe also what you speak. Your faith will grow big, and it shall produce bountiful harvests for you. You won’t miss it, in Jesus name. Amen. Happy Sunday!

____________________

Bishop Taiwo Akinola,

Rhema Christian Church,

Otta, Ogun State, Nigeria.

Connect with Bishop Akinola via these channels:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bishopakinola

SMS/WhatsApp: +234 802 318 4987

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