“The apostles said to the Lord, ‘Increase our faith.’ And the Lord said, ‘If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea and it would obey you.'”
– Luke 17:5–6
What a statement from Jesus. Here are the apostles saying to Him, “Increase our faith. We want our faith to grow.”
Luke 17:5–6 Reminds Us God is able to do the Impossible
And after gathering each night this week with our church family in a way none of us planned, or expected, and seeing God move in all kinds of ways, one of the things I’ve seen in my life and in our church family is a rise in faith, just a deepening trust that when we are praying as we gathered together and just prayed for hours for different things, that we have faith, that God is actually listening to us, and that God is able to do the impossible in response to our prayers.
We’re praying boldly for things that at least in my own life, I’ve not prayed as boldly for. And in all of that we’ve talked about how we pray with confidence in God’s power to do anything, nothing impossible with Him, and God’s wisdom. Obviously, God chooses to answer prayers in different ways. According to His wisdom, He sees things we don’t see and knows things we don’t know, and is working in ways we don’t realize. We trust His wisdom, and in all of that, we trust His power, His wisdom, and His love.
And so we can pray with faith, with confidence. That’s why Jesus looks at His disciples here and says, “If you have faith like a grain of mustard seed,” like all you need is a little bit of faith, and a great God in order to see great things happen. And I think that is why, at least in my own life, faith has risen. Even this week in gathering every night with our church family, I’ve seen God’s greatness in God’s glory and God’s Spirit in greater ways. And as a result you realize, “Yeah, a little bit of faith in a big, great, glorious, all powerful, all wise, all loving God goes a really long way.”
Luke 17:5–6 Encourages us to Pray Boldly
And I just want to encourage you today to let that kind of faith rise in you, see the greatness, behold the greatness of the God you are praying to and pray with faith. Behold the greatness of the God you serve today, the God you worship today, and live in light of how great He is. And in the process, trust Him to do that which is impossible apart from His hand.
God, we, we pray, increase our faith by increasing our understanding of who you are, our understanding of your attributes, your perfections, your perfect omnipotence. You have all power, and there’s nothing we can ask you to do. I think about one brother, Chung Kim, who we’ve been praying for who is facing death at any moment. We believe you have power to heal His body. That is not beyond you. You could say the word and do it right now, oh God, and we are asking that you might do that.
Please God with trust in your power, at the same time trusting in your wisdom that you see things that we don’t see, and know things we don’t know, and trusting in your love that you give good gifts to all your children who ask you. And so we pray with faith for this brother, and so many other people and things that you lead us to pray for.
Praying for the Kist People
God, we pray that you would make us faithful in prayer and in life full of faith in you. Lord, we pray today for the Kist people of Georgia, the small Muslim people group. God, we pray with faith that you would cause the gospel to spread there, that you would send out laborers there, your blessed brothers and sisters in Georgia for the spread of the gospel among the Kist people and places in Russia where the Kist people live, God, that you would cause the gospel to spread to them.
We pray for disciples to be made, and churches to be planted, and multiplied among the Kist people. We pray, we ask for this with faith, oh God, with trust that you are going to bring all the nations to know you, and enjoy you and exalt you, and that you’re going to use our prayers as part of that. God, we pray all of this with faith in you and with a desire for increased faith, through increased understanding of who you are. In Jesus’ name we pray according to Luke 17:5-6. Amen.