Read Luke 17:5-6
5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you. (NRSV)
Most of us would like to have more faith. But the question is, what does ‘more faith’ mean? The disciples wanted increased faith and Jesus’ reply is enlightening. He seems to question their question. Faith is not about quantity as if we can measure it or top it up. A tiny mustard-seed quantity of faith is sufficient.
The quality of our faith is linked to its object. I may have a lot of faith in my ability to flap my arms and fly but that faith does me no good. I may have a tiny amount of faith in God’s ability to empower me to stand up under trial, and that faith will do me good. Because the object is sound my faith is sound.
Beware of examining your own level of faith. It is actually an examination of your feelings about faith. Faith has more to do with what God is doing than with what you are feeling at any given time. Having a cold or being tired or experiencing a heatwave can affect our feelings about our faith. Hormones can play havoc with how we feel about our faith.
The key issue is how attentive we are to God, how well we grasp the character of God, how discerning we are as to what he is doing. As the old saying goes, we don’t need great faith in God, but rather faith in a great God.