I have a mountain to move. Maybe you do to. My mountain is daunting and I feel paralyzed at times when I think about how I’m going to get up and over it. Maybe yours is daunting too.
Your mountain may resemble mine or it may be something completely different. In fact, I may have no problem moving your mountain and you may have no problem moving mine. But as I face my mountain I wonder if I can move my mountain by faith?
“For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there.’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20 ESV
Really? I just have to have faith as small as a mustard seed? Really? It seems that a mountain would require more than a mustard seed amount of faith to move it. It’s hard to wrap my mind around small faith to move big mountains.
My Mountain of Fear
My mountain involves fear. Fear may not look like a mountain in your life but it looms large for me. Like I said, you may be able to move my mountain and I may be able to move yours. And yet, I still have fear when I come face to face with my mountain.
What I am learning as I walk up to my mountain of fear is that it’s going to be a journey. Traversing a mountain takes time, skill, knowledge of the terrain, among a host of other factors.
Pastor Lance Hahn author of How to Live in Fear, says it this way:
“One of the greatest commands in the Bible is, “Do not be afraid.” Every time God repeats this phrase, the person He is speaking to has every right to be afraid. The danger is legitimate, but God’s presence overshadows all the facts. Faith is hanging on to the truth in the face of overwhelming emotional demands.”
I wish I could say that I’m not afraid as I face my mountain. But my body tells me otherwise as my sympathetic nervous system signals my stress hormones. The havoc they cause in my body is real as my heart races and my blood pressure soars and these changes make me feel like a failure emotionally and physically and that I must not have enough faith.
So I’m hanging on to God’s truth in the face of my fears.
“Faith as a grain of mustard seed suggests not only size (God will honor even a little faith), but also life and growth. Faith like a mustard seed is living faith that is nurtured and caused to grow. Faith must be cultivated so that it grows and does even greater exploits for God.” (W. Weirsbe, 2007)
Every time I face my mountain, hanging on to the truth in the face of overwhelming emotional demands (and those are sometimes debilitating) I am honoring God, nurturing and growing my faith. My mustard seed faith starts small, but as I face my mountains, my faith grows.
Surrendering and Trusting to Grow my Faith
Facing my latest mountain of fear, I wanted to be all in with trusting God. I really want true surrendered faith so I was going to face my fears and move past them. As I started up the mountain, my faith felt weak and my fear felt more real and I succumbed to it creating another plan to traverse the mountain that was comfortable and I felt like a failure. I felt like I was not trusting God.
But God met me there in my created space of comfort. Even though I felt like a failure this time, He so graciously showed me that I was growing my mustard seed of faith for the next trek up the mountain. I believe He wanted me to know that He is the source and object of my faith, even the weak, mustard-seed variety.
Four Steps to Cultivating Our Faith
Each trek toward and up my mountain of fear is cultivating and growing my weak faith. The key is understanding that there is a process to cultivating and growing our weak faith. Here are four steps to cultivating your faith:
Make time for a relationship with God.
The key here is asking yourself: Is God a priority in my life?
Make time to get to know God better.
The key here is to read His Word and talk to God through prayer. God wants to reveal Himself to you through His Word and through your prayers.
Look for God.
The key here is to look for where God is working and where He is inviting you to join Him. As you look for God, this will have a profound and positive impact on your faith.
Ask for more faith and then use it!
The key here is to make the ask and then be patient for God to reveal and then when He does use it! Your weak faith will grow tremendously!
A Faith That Moves Mountains
If I want faith that moves my mountains, I must cultivate it. I must put my faith and trust in God. Pastor Hahn says:
“The fact is God is big, super big. He’s bigger than our problems, fears, worries and anxieties. He’s actually more real than our chemically induced, warped views of life, our dysfunctional childhood patterns of thought, our culturally derived, overblown views of who we are. There is nothing outside of His scope or authority. There is no problem too small that He would miss it or too big that He cannot solve it.”
As I trust God I will have to exercise my faith muscle, being patient, letting God lead me to His comfort and not my own created comfort as I start the next trek up my mountain. It’s in the process of trusting and trekking keeping my focus on the source and object of my faith that my faith will move my mountain!