Hebrews 11:1, 6
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see… And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
That’s the image I want to be in your mind as we talk about faith.
With mere mental assent, anyone can believe that the chair would support their weight. With careful analysis, you could inspect the legs of the chair, observe carefully the materials it was made from, and assess the structural integrity of the chair. You could rate the chair at 500 pounds and sincerely believe that a 500 pound person could sit in the chair without breaking it… But that doesn’t mean you have even 1 pound of faith in the chair.
Faith comes in the sitting.
Faith could be defined as the leaning of your weight on something. It is active, not passive. No matter how much you pray, you cannot please God until the weight of your faith is seated in him.
And it doesn’t take much. You see, I don’t think I really understand faith all that well, and most of the time, I feel like I don’t have much faith. There is so little I understand about God, and in the flurry of activities and demands of this world, I find myself riddled with doubts. I think you and I are in the same boat.
But Jesus has encouragement for us. In Matthew 17:20, he says that even faith as small as a mustard seed can move a mountain.
You and I may not have much faith, but that’s immaterial. What matters is not how much we have.
Hebrews 11 tells the stories of numerous men and women followed God. What set them apart was not their depth of understanding or diligence in religious service; it was the fact that they walked with God and talked with him as a friend. Intimacy leads to obedience, and the way that they experienced the tenderness of God’s voice is what led them to great deeds.
Yet it all begins with the mustard seed of faith resting upon the benevolent supportiveness of a personal God.
What matters is not how much faith we have but that all of it is leaning entirely upon him, that all of it rests within the assurance that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
Today, before you request anything of God, I want you to take a moment, close your eyes, and imagine yourself sitting down in a chair, resting your full weight upon it as you rest the full weight of your faith upon the truth that God is listening and answering.
Visualize yourself seated securely in the Father’s love. Imagine yourself like John, the beloved disciple, resting his head on Jesus’ chest. This is intimacy. This is the essence of faith.