Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1
I recently had a doctor’s appointment and the mammogram was abnormal.
The doctor wanted more testing. So I scheduled the appointment. During the period of waiting, prayers were said asking for a normal result.
So I went to the hospital this week to get the additional tests. After the additional mammogram images were taken, the radiology technician asked me to wait again because the doctor had to see the result of the exam. After awhile, another technician came and escorted me for an ultrasound. “Another test?”, I thought to myself. My heart sank a little bit… After the ultrasound was done, I was again asked to wait. After about 5 minutes, she came back and said the results were negative! I was so happy and relieved by the result.
When you’re in the middle of the storm in your life like this… when you’re being tested…it can be difficult to activate your faith. I know because I was just in it. And I learned 2 important lessons in helping to strengthen one’s faith.
I’ve learned faith is like a seed that needs water and sunshine to grow.
First, faith needs to be watered by the word of God. The Bible states in Romans 10:17, “Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.”
When I wrote last week’s blog post, one of the readers advised me to read Psalm 91. It’s a beautiful and bold Psalm about how God’s power will protect and save you. I thank God for Adeleke for giving me this word. It now has a special place in my heart.
And this brings me to the second lesson about growing faith – it needs sunshine to grow. And that sunshine comes from the support of family members, friends and community.
I remember someone once told me the members of community are like candles. When your light becomes dim and flickers, another member of the community can come close to you and make your light shine brighter again.
It’s difficult to wait for God’s answers sometimes. And I don’t like waiting. Because thoughts can come streaming through one’s mind that can dim the light of faith inside of you. When it happens, it’s being with supportive loved ones who can fan the flame of faith inside of you that really helps.
Yesterday, I attended a Catholic Charismatic conference and during one talk, Tom Mangan asked, “How would you complete this sentence – I am comforted by God by _______.” There was a pause as he gave the audience a chance to think of answers to complete the sentence.
He then said God’s word to him was “I am comforted by God by the coming of Titus.” St. Titus was a very trusted friend of St. Paul in the New Testament. He said when St. Paul learned St. Titus was coming, he was excited to see him. St. Paul had many challenges and he also needed the comfort of friends and community.
You’re all my friends. And I received comfort from your words, prayers and faith. And I thank you from the bottom of my heart! As you continue to read my sharings, may you be blessed as well. And let’s continue to be an online community of support.
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11