by Brandy Webb
Faith is a gift from God. It is not something we create ourselves (Eph 2:8-9). God gives us a measure of faith (Rom 12:3), and I believe that God allots us more faith as we grow in Christ. I do not think that we are stuck with the measure we receive when we first believe.
When I look at Abraham, the father of faith, I see a man whose faith grew. I know that it took a lot of faith to leave his homeland and to follow an unseen God to an unknown place (Gen 12). He had a measure of faith; I’m sure it was given to him by God since God never changes. As the story goes on, though, his faith even has moments of doubts. He lies twice about Sarah not being his wife because of fear (Gen 12:13; Gen 20:2). He was also the first one to laugh when God tells him that Sarah was going to have a child (Gen 17:17). So, even Abraham had his moments.
Now, I am not belittling Abraham at all, I’m just pointing out that the events of his life and his growth in God is what helped to make his faith grow to the point that he trusted God enough to give his son to him. He didn’t have that measure of faith at the beginning of his walk. His faith grew.
Peter is another faithful person whose faith grew as he matured. He walked and talked with the Messiah. He even walked on water until he saw how powerful the wind was and became afraid (Matt 14:29-30). Yet, through all of this, he denies the Messiah three times (Mark 14:68-72). I see a pattern that fear can quench our faith if we let it. Despite all of Peter’s stumbles, though, he grows into one of the greatest apostles. He is given great gifts of the Spirit, and the ability to spread the gospel around the world. Plus, his faith grows to the point that he is no longer afraid to suffer and die for his God and Messiah.
I know there are many more that grew—Moses, Gideon, Esther, and more—but it would take too long to mention them all. The main thing, is that faith can grow. God will allot us more as we mature spiritually. But, we must realize that with more faith may come more responsibilities and trials.
One thing we have to strive to not do, is quench the Holy Spirit (1 Thess 5:19). Faith is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, and if we quench it with fear or sin, our fruit will shrink. We have to work hard to live a life of faith. That is complete trust in our Father and Messiah. We must make sure we have our shield always with us (Eph 6:16). God isn’t going to force us to grab our shield, but He will provide it for us to hold. It is our choice to carry it with us at all times. Accept the gift of faith, and may God help us all to nurture it, so that it fully ripens because with it, we can conquer this evil world (1 Jn 5:4).