Lisa Jimenez tells us that the opposite of fear is faith. “It is faith that fosters courage, boldness, and conviction. Where faith exists, fear is silenced. You can neutralize your fears by making your faith bigger than your fear.”
The disciples once asked Jesus to increase their faith. Jesus gave them this marvelous response, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.” (Luke)
Sometimes when reading this passage, we may think that Jesus is scolding the disciples – criticizing them for their lack of faith. Scholars tell us that Jesus’ language contains no hint of criticism.
It is as though he is saying, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed – and you do – that faith is more than enough to uproot a mighty tree!” The implication is, “You already have faith. Even a mustard-seed size is more than enough. Use it!”
We all have faith but sometimes we begin to doubt our faith. We do not feel like we did at some high spiritual point in our lives. We ask ourselves, “Did I lose it?”
It is impossible to “lose” faith. Faith is not feeling or a possession of ours in the first place. It is a spiritual power that originates with God and comes to us as a gift.
What we need to do when we experience fears or doubts is to plug into the source. If I have a toaster and I put bread into the toaster but do not plug it into the electrical socket, I won’t have toast.
The same is true with faith. In moments of doubt or fear, we must plug into the source of life, our loving God. The surge of God’s spiritual energy will flow into us, and through us, to others.
One way of doing that is prayer. The following is an example of how we can tap into God’s power through prayer and increase our faith.
“Dear Lord, I thank you for this day, for the ability to see and to hear your marvelous creation. I am blessed because you are a forgiving and understanding God. You have done so much for me and you keep on blessing me. Forgive me for everything I have done, said or thought that was not pleasing to you.
“Please keep me safe from all danger and harm. Help me to always have a positive attitude and plenty of gratitude. Let me use every day to clear my mind so that I can hear your voice. Broaden my mind that I can accept all things. Let me not whine over things which I have no control. Give the best response when I’m pushed beyond my limits.
“I know that when I cannot pray, you listen to my heart. Continue to use me to do your will.
“Continue to bless me that I may be a blessing to others. Keep me strong that I may help the weak. Keep me uplifted that I may have words of encouragement for others. I pray for those lost and cannot find their way. I pray for those that we have misjudged and misunderstood. I pray for those who do not know you intimately. I pray for those who do not believe.
“I believe that you change people and events. I pray for all my family member and their households. I pray for their peace, love, and joy. I pray that we will realize that there is no problem, circumstance, or situation greater than you.
Every battle is in your hands for you to fight. God, I love you and I need you. Stay with me always. Amen.”