As I did my rehab and exercises this morning, I reflected on that prayer. Uh oh, I thought. What if praying for more faith is like praying for more patience, where you don’t actually get it, but you get opportunities to practice and cultivate it?
We’re a two-entrepreneur family now, and I told my husband last night in the midst of frustration and discouragement, “I know you’re doing everything you can. No question. And I still believe this is what God has led us to.” There were no buts, no “if onlys,” just a simple assurance that we’re still on the right track. Within half an hour, I received an order from a customer from whom I wasn’t expecting another order. Yeah, I see it as a God thing.
“God, give me more faith!” The story of the man with the demon-possessed boy in Mark 9 came to me. The father wants to believe. In fact, I believe he truly does. Yet, the doubts creep in; after all, his son had been possessed by this evil spirit for years, and it’d tried to kill the boy numerous times. So the father cries out, anguished, “I believe! Help me to believe more!” Some translations have that as, “I have faith! Help me have more faith!” That’s me this morning.
It’s a pure, selfless request, the request of the striving, growing believer. Those moments when our faith slips can lead in two directions: One, we can say that God obviously doesn’t care and turn away completely; or two, we can pray for more faith. Pray for it. Ask for it. We can’t do anything more than this to get it. We can’t put our good works into some vending machine to get what we want back out. All we can do is humbly, sincerely ask. It is in humbling ourselves that we are most receptive to receiving greater faith.
In the Mark 9 account of this demon-possessed boy, there’s a request, there’s a faith lesson, then there’s healing, followed by God granting exactly what the father needed. Both father and son needed something on this day. This morning, I prayed a request, the Spirit led my meditations, there was a revelation (not so much a healing for us), then God gave me what I needed. While I was doing my rehab, I’d heard my husband come back in after having left for work before leaving again. I texted to ask if everything was OK. He’d gotten two voicemail messages, both for estimates, one for a subcontract job with growth potential. God gave us an opportunity to increase our income (always vital in the new stages of entrepreneurship), and God had affirmed that we were still on the right path.
God gave me more faith!