“When Jesus saw their faith….” Mark 2:5
“Paul looked directly at him, saw that he had faith to be healed…” Acts 14:9b
Faith is believing- a thing of the heart. So, how can you see faith?
Our faith (or the lack of it) will always find expression in the things we say and, more importantly in the things we do. Out of the abundance of our heart…our mouth speaks, our actions flow… If we truly believe that our prayers are answered, if we are confident that God will come through for us, then we must be sensitive to ensure that Jesus can also ‘see’ our faith by the words we speak and the actions we take.
To say we have faith and shed tears of sorrow even after we have prayed; to speak of dying after we have asked Him to heal and restore our health; to run to Egypt for help even after we have declared Him the source of our total supply; to run to altars that we know are not purely of God for solutions to our problems; – are signs that all is not as it should be with our faith.
Years ago and in a place of distress, I spent quite a bit of time in prayers. On a particular day and after having prayed, I became agitated and wept bitterly when I pondered on what my family was passing through. And then the LORD spoke – He said ‘… the only reason you are weeping is because you do not believe that I will come through for you, for if you truly believe you would be rejoicing rather than weeping.’
And then He made an analogy saying that if I had approached my earthly father who I know to be extremely rich and capable of helping and he had promised to help in a few days, would the sorrow not be lifted from my heart immediately as I joyfully await the fulfilment of his promised help? I rejoice not because I have it but because I am confident that my father would come through for me. Why then, He asked, was I weeping and not rejoicing despite His promise to help – Isaiah 41:10. After all, “… faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1.
You see in my heart I believed enough to have prayed but my tears even after fasting and praying were a sign that I wasn’t really sure…I wasn’t really confident that God would come through for me.
Now and again I ponder on His words… and I am deeply grateful that He has given me the grace to believe that with Him all things are indeed possible…. but looking inwards I have found the indeterminate timing of His visitation a source of anxiety….would I survive the waiting period…? Only by grace!
Let us fight the good fight of faith…. and say and do only those things that make our faith in God visible. And the God who responded to the faith of the friends of the paralytic will respond to ours in Jesus name!