Growing faith

I was reading this morning from Luke 17 verses 5 to 10.

5One day the apostles said to the Lord, “We need more faith; tell us how to get it.”
6“Even if you had faith as small as a mustard seed,” the Lord answered, “you could say to this mulberry tree, `May God uproot you and throw you into the sea,’ and it would obey you!
7“When a servant comes in from plowing or taking care of sheep, he doesn’t just sit down and eat. 8He must first prepare his master’s meal and serve him his supper before eating his own. 9And the servant is not even thanked, because he is merely doing what he is supposed to do. 10In the same way, when you obey me you should say, `We are not worthy of praise. We are servants who have simply done our duty.’ ” (NLT)

The disciples question just happens to be a question I am asking too.  I want more faith – tell me how to get it.

And then Jesus, as usual, tells a story.  Instead of saying follow these steps a…,b…c…, he says, I think, do what you are supposed to do.  Do your duty and obey me and don’t look for praise for doing it.

My first reation is, “Well, what does this have to do with the question?  How on earth will doing my duty increase my faith?”

I must confess, I do not understand this.  Shouldn’t he have said study the scriptures, pray, spend time fellowshipping with fellow believers?

Is this one of those Naaman moments when I am looking for something more obvious or glamourous to do – more along the lines of what is expected in our churches – something I can do to improve myself?  I don’t know.  Somehow just doing what I’m doing dosen’t seem like much.

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0 responses to “Growing faith

  1. Shaorn

    I’m with ya!! Maybe if we put cute little white aprons on with a frilly little white cap and a black mini skirt (picture that!!) our serving would be more ‘interesting’……and if we don’t go for that then I guess we’ll just have to serve with our work clothes on…..as exciting as that is. Maybe that’s it! Just serving …….. wherever……whomever……is faith that simple? He DID say we should have faith like little children……I suppose in our faithfulness in serving He will allow our faith to grow………oh, I don’t know. Just my ramblings…………

  2. Sharon

    and now I can’t type my name right!

  3. Toni

    Hey Shaorn – after all the ructions about propriety and meeting women one-on-one, that really isn’t a good picture to be painting. To borrow a phrase I read yesterday “would someone come and poke my mind’s eye out” 🙂

    My take has always been that he’d moved on to his next point, for what little it’s worth.

    But I’m eally glad you DID bring that verse up Linea. With all the talk of various people being in leadership, this is one of the marks of someone who is a true leader in the church. It has been noticeable by it’s absence in the discussions about who’s got a ‘right to lead and teach’. I find this lack more disturbing than the actual sex of the would-be leader.

  4. Char

    Linea – you’ve hit upon a great truth: it is so very difficult for us to root out pride even within our spiritual lives. Like the disciples we often want to focus on “improving” our spiritual lives. Jesus makes it clear that if the disciples think that their faith is, or could be, something great then they had better think again. Nothing like being told that you’re somewhere below the worth of a mustard seed spiritually to give you some perspective! Then he goes on to say: do what I tell you to do and whatever may come of it is not for your glory! Honestly, it’s the type of 1-2 punch that my ego often requires. Thanks for the workout:)