Faith as a Mustard Seed

(walter little) #1

My 93-year young mother-in-law has prayed for her 92-year husband to regain his hearing and sight to no avail. She feels God is not listening as she has faith as big as a mustard seed. I have told her:

  1. God’s ways are not our ways…who can understand God’s ways?
  2. God’s timing is unknowable to us.r
  3. God hears your prayer! Continue to beseech Him

Any other Thoughts that might aswage her…Blessings Walt

(SeanO) #2

@wlittle6 Thank you for sharing this question. May God give you wisdom and may He give your mother-in-law peace, hope and faith! One approach would be to share what the Bible teaches about suffering and then to share testimonies from people who have faith in spite of their situation.

1 - Here are a few key verses on suffering. Jesus makes it clear that we will suffer, but that he has conquered the world. Romans 8 makes it clear that we all ‘groan’ to have our new bodies - these bodies may be breaking down - but we have a new body in glory. Suffering and decay are part of this earthly body, but we will get a new body in glory. I Cor 15 also has a beautiful passage on how our current body is corruptible, but at the resurrection we will receive an incorruptible body.

John 16:33 - I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

Romans 8:18-25 - I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

1 Cor 15 - So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; 43 it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; 44 it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.

2 - Here is the testimony of Nick Vujici - born with no arms and legs. Perhaps his faith could be an encouragement to her. How many times do you think he prayed for God to give him arms and legs? Yet he decided to trust God with what he had and it is amazing to hear his testimony.

(Omar Rushlive Lozada Arellano) #3

Hello @wlittle6. A short answer would be that though it’s possible for God to heal because of a theistic universe, it does not follow that God would always heal a person if they ask Him. God’s miracles are His prerogative. Even a person with a faith as big as a mountain would not be granted healing if God’s purpose for the person is not to heal them in this life. This does not mean that we should not pray though. This should encourage us more knowing that if it’s God’s will, God would surely grant it. The great comfort we have though as believers is that even if we won’t be healed in this life, we know that in the resurrection, the pain and sickness we are experiencing will be no more.

Maybe this link would help your mother-in-law:

(Tim Behan) #4

@wlittle6 I’m sorry that you and your in-laws are going through this. I hope and pray that the Lord grants all of you strength and patience as you go. Also wisdom and discernment as you wrestle with your questions.

We recently had a Bible Study where this very question came up. I’ve put an article that I found helpful below… but what we spoke about in the study revolved around the following, which I hope you find helpful.

I tend to think that with the verses on faith, it isn’t really about the quantity of faith we have, but rather the greatness of the one we have faith in. It certainly doesn’t promise anywhere in the Bible that we will not have suffering in this life, nor that God will take it away if we pray for it (he may do, but doesn’t promise to).

The two examples we spoke of are Paul and Jesus. Paul mentions that he has a “thorn in the flesh”, which may relate to some physical infirmity which he prayed to the Lord three times to remove from him (2 Cor 12:7-10) but the Lord chose not to. Jesus himself, as I’m sure we’re all familiar with, in the Garden of Gethsemane asked that if there was any way to take this cup away, that the Lord would do it. “But not my will, but yours [God the Fathers] be done”, Jesus continued.

It’s those two examples that give me hope and encouragement. You can’t argue that either of them lacked faith (you may be able to argue with Paul, but certainly not Jesus)… but the hope and encouragement comes from the fact that Paul the Apostle went through suffering, prayed, and then left it in the Lords hands. But more than this… our Lord Jesus suffered, prayed, and then left it in the Lords hands, continuing in his work and trusting in his Father.

And this is what we are called to do, I think. I’m not sure if that is helpful, but it has certainly helped me as I strove to understand this passage.

(walter little) #5

Thank you SeanO…much insight! Walt

(SeanO) #6

@wlittle6 Hope it was helpful. May the Lord give your mother-in-law peace and faith by the Spirit of Christ!