How Much Faith Is Enough?

Theme: Faith. Proper 22 (27) Year C
Object: A mustard seed, if you can find one.
Scripture: The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!" He replied, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you. Luke 17:5-6 (NIV)

When we come to church, we hear a lot talk about faith. We read about faith in the Bible and we sing songs about faith, but what is faith? When we say that we have faith, it means that we believe something is true, even when we can't see it. I heard a story that might help us to understand it better.

One day, a little girl got lost in the woods on a farm near where she lived. The farmer who owned the land found the little girl and said to her, "Don't be afraid; I'll take you home."

The little child looked up at him, and with a smile, said, "I'm not afraid. I knew you would come; I was waiting for you."

"Waiting for me?" said the man. "What made you think I was coming?"

"I was praying that you would." she said.

"You were praying?" the farmer asked. "When I first heard you, you were just saying 'A B C D E F G.' What was that for?"

She looked up again and said, "I wasn't sure exactly what to say, so I was praying all the letters of the alphabet and letting God put them together the way He wanted them. He knew I was lost and he knew how to put the letters together better than I do."

Even though the little girl could not see God, she had faith that he loved her and cared for her. She had faith that if she asked him to help her, he would.

How much faith is enough? Do we need to have a lot of faith, or will just a little bit do? The answer may surprise you.

The followers of Jesus said to him one day, "Give us more faith."

Jesus answered them, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you." Do you know how big a mustard seed is? It is so small that you can hardly see it!

When we have faith in God, it isn't a question of how big our faith is, it is a question of how powerful our God is, and with God all things are possible!

Father, we don't ask you to give us more faith. We simply ask that you help us to use the faith that we have and trust you to do the rest. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.

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