The apostles said to the Lord, “Show us how to increase our faith.”
The Lord answered, “If you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘May you be uprooted and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you! (NLT)
Most of us would like to have more faith. But we need to be careful what we ask for. The disciples saw faith as some sort of measurable quantity which could be increased. Jesus sees things differently. He doesn’t directly answer their question but shows how misguided it is. His point being that a little bit of faith (mustard seed) can do a big or seemingly impossible thing.
Faith is only as sound as its object. If I have lots of faith in my ability to flap my arms and fly in the air, I will not as a result fly in the air. Such faith has a faulty object. If I have just a speck of faith in the ability of a train to take me to my destination, I will get to that destination. And so our Christian faith is anchored in the faithfulness of God not our own feelings of faith.
No point in trying to psyche ourselves up to get more faith. Better to get to know the object of our faith, our faithful God. Prayer, worship, fellowship, Bible reflection, practical service, are all ways of increasing our faith because they deepen our relationship with the object of our faith.
Increasing our faith is not about heroics but about helplessness. Getting a greater realisation of just how much we need the help of God and how little we can do without it. Quit striving to be a “giant of faith” and instead focus on being a dependent child. We don’t so much need great faith, but faith in a great God.