Put Your Faith on Automatic

by Lester Young

Faith is ‘believing,’ pure and simple.  And, it’s a creative force.  Hebrews 11:1 and 3 tell us that everything we see around us is composed of a substance we can’t see at all (and, no, I’m not talking about protons, neutrons, electrons, quarks and all that stuff – I mean the spiritual material that actually made those things).

But, today we’re going to look at the subject from a slightly different angle.  Did you know that faith is in servitude to us?  Yes, servitude.  That is, a servant, as in ‘do my bidding’ – that kind of servant.  Don’t believe me?  Well, follow me, if you will, to Luke 17.  There, Jesus is responding to a request from His apostles that He increase their faith (verse 5).  Basically speaking, He told them that even though the amount of faith they actually possessed might be ridiculously small, if they would simply put it to work, it would accomplish big things (verse 6).

Now, if the Lord had ended that particular teaching session right there, it undoubtedly would have still been very helpful.  Interestingly, though, He didn’t stop there, but moved right on to a completely different subject – or so it seemed, because it actually wasn’t different at all.  Based on the fact that He continued straight through with no pause or segue or anything, He obviously was still talking about the same thing.

In that conversation, Jesus drew a parallel between faith and a servant; saying, “If you [have] faith…,” in verse 6; and, “…You, having a servant…,” in verse 7.  He went on to explain that a servant doesn’t have the luxury of looking to his own needs or desires until he’s completely finished doing whatever it is the boss has told him to do.  And, then, he isn’t even thanked for it, because it’s his job to do just that – it’s why he’s there!

Jesus continued on, making it clear exactly what our servant Faith’s job is: “Make ready wherewith [provide and prepare everything that’s needed so] I may sup, and gird thyself [get yourself ready], and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken [that is, partaken my fill of all the things that this life requires]…” (Luke 17:8).  In other words, your faith has a mandated task to bring into being in your life all the things you put it to work for – food, clothing, health, housing, money, prosperity…everything.  Remember, it’s the substance of the things you intensely expect to come to you (Hebrews 11:1).

But, there’s a particular way that we need to deal with this servant.  We’re not to treat him as though he’s some unproductive employee who can’t be trusted the moment he’s out of eyesight (Ephesians 6:6), because that just isn’t the case.  Remember who this servant is that we’ve been given – his name is listed as one of the fruits of God’s very own Spirit (Galatians 5:22).  You think he’s unfaithful?  You think he can’t be trusted to do his job, his full job?  How could he even possibly be unfaithful with a name like ‘Faith’?!

We don’t have to stand over Faith and watch him work.  When he’s given an order, he’s, well… faithful.  When Jesus spanked that fig tree (not literally, of course; but there was a confrontation, and the tree lost – badly!) for not serving breakfast, He spoke only enough words to it to get His desire across – and He spoke it only once (Mark 11:14).  He sent His faith out to do a job; and after that, for all intents and purposes, He forgot about it.  He didn’t go back to that spot to check on the tree and ‘see how it looked;’ as far as He was concerned it was over and done and the matter was closed.  If Peter hadn’t called everyone’s attention to the tree’s condition the next day, it’s very likely Jesus would never even have considered it again, ever! (Mark 11:20-21)

That’s how we must learn to treat our faith.  Many times, we as Christians send our faith out on a mission well enough, but then we start checking up on him because what we’re believing for hasn’t shown up yet.  So, we give him the same order again, perhaps adding a few more ‘forceful’ words to it, because “maybe it didn’t quite ‘take’ the first time.”  What we don’t realize is that repeating the process is in itself an act of unbelief; because if we had really believed we received when we did it the first time, as we’re instructed to in Mark 11:24, we’d have absolutely no reason to do it again.

If you look at outward appearances (such as a condition or symptom in your body) or some natural circumstance confronting you and allow yourself to be persuaded that your faith ‘isn’t working’ (2 Corinthians 10:7), you most assuredly, though inadvertently, take him off the job.  The same holds true if you continually ‘serve’ things (especially money, but anything else, too) with your thought-life.  Even if you’ve got no money to speak of, you can still serve it with your mind, by paying nonstop attention to it or to your financial situation.  And, there are two – and only two – reasons why money would always be on a person’s mind: greed for it, also known as ‘covetousness’ (Ephesians 5:3, 5); or ‘worry’ about it (1 Peter 5:7).  Oddly enough, both of those show up in the ‘thorny ground’ spoken of in Mark 4:19.

So, once you’ve got God’s Word on an issue, whatever it may be, put your servant Faith on it and let him go to work (2 Corinthians 1:20) – and let him stay out there until he’s done.  Give him his space and time, and stop concerning yourself at all about the matter he’s handling (1 Peter 5:7).  If it pops into your mind, just thank God for the result you believe you’ve already received, cast the care of it over onto Him, and keep it moving (Mark 11:24; 1 Peter 5:7).  Remember, that servant you have is from God, which means he knows his job, he’s faithful to do it (2 Corinthians 1:18) and he’s good at what he does.  And, what he does is accomplish big things.  After all, his name says it all.  So just put him on automatic, trust him, and let him do his thing!

 

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14 Responses to “Put Your Faith on Automatic”

  1. I enjoy your writings so much, because they are biblical with a down to earth touch. Maybe I missed the point of ” Put Your Faith on Automatic”, so I would like to ask for clarification on these points. My questions come from Luke 18:1-8, the parable about the persistent woman and Matthew 7:7. Shouldn’t we keep praying despite all the obstacles we face and despite all the signs that say we should just give up. Isn’t the lesson in these passages, that we may not get the answer right away, but , in faith, we must keep asking and keep believing, and God will answer in His time? Jesus seems to be teaching us that faith is not a one-time prayer, but faith keeps on praying until the answer comes.

    • Hi Pat.

      That’s an excellent question. Noo, I don’t think you missed the point of the post 🙂 Like the persistent woman who went before the unjust judge, we are to be persistent in prayer to God. A major point that we sometimes overlook, however, is that prayer can (and most undoubtedly should) consist of not only our asking God for things, but also worshiping Him, just talking to Him about anything (or nothing, like you talk to your best friend, because He is just that), not saying anything and just listening for His promptings inside us (that’s a big one), and thanking Him – in faith – for His answers and deliverance (another big one). It’s very interesting to note that Jesus finished that particular parable by saying “God will avenge [those that cry day and night to Him) speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, shall He find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8)

      Jesus teaches us to “Have faith in God” (Mark 11:22); and faith’s place in the timeline is always right now, i.e., the present. (Hope, that is, earnest expectation, is always set in the future: “If we already have something, we [no longer] need to hope for it” – that is, continue to expect for its arrival. Romans 8:24, NLT) But faith is always present and now, as Hebrews 11:1 states, “Now faith is…” (i.e., exists now). That’s precisely why Jesus said, “believe you receive [that you actually have it] when you pray” (Mark 11:24). Now, if you truly believed you took possession of your desire when you prayed the first time, is there any point in going back to God in prayer and continuing to ask Him for it? No; in fact, any such action would simply prove that you didn’t believe you got it in the first place.

      So, if you believe you’ve received when you first went to God, then all that’s really left is to thank Him for the answer, for the wisdom or knowledge, for the manifestation of whatever it is you required of Him. And this is the persistence that we are to show in continued prayer. Not in continuing to ask for the same thing over and over [as if we didn’t really receive it the first time – because Jesus commanded us to believe we receive it when we pray], but to thank Him continually – even when (especially when) the manifestation seems long in coming. (“When I come, shall I find faith on the earth?”)

      So, yes, we are to continue and persevere in prayer, but not in unbelief. We are to persevere and give continual thanks in faith, in believing the promises our Father has made to us, and standing on them in faith and thanksgiving until we see the manifestation with our natural eyes…and then we just thank Him some more!

      When it gets difficult, and circumstances are screaming at you “You didn’t get nothin’!” give thanks to God that you indeed do believe you’ve already got it; then turn around and stand your ground against the devil, the situation, the lack, the disease – whatever it is – and speak God’s answer, His promise to you, right in the face of the circumstance! That’s faith, and that’s aligning your words with His – because His Words are always going to stand (Isaiah 51:16; Matthew 24:35).

      I hope that helps. Pat. Thanks for your question and interaction, I very much appreciate it…God bless you!

      Lester

      • Thanks so much for your answer it makes sense now and cleared up for me that I should make my request in faith and thank God for his answer, knowing that His plans and blessings for me are all good. I am looking forward to getting your book and wish you much success with it.

      • Hi, Pat.

        Absolutely right! Every move, request or response we have toward God must be in faith (Hebrews 11:6) for Him to bless it. I’m really glad that my answer helped you..and thanks so much for your interest in the book. I look forward to hearing your opinion of it..my email is on the last page. 🙂 Thanks again, Pat…

        Lester

  2. Excellent post, Lester. God gives us a measure of faith which we can use to put us over in life, and it is what we do with it that really matters. I am reminded of the talents given to the 3 servants, and two servants put it to use and doubled it, while the third servant hid it in the ground. Putting faith on automatic is a mindset, an attitude, and it is giving honor to the Master Who gave this gift of faith to us.

    • That is an excellent example, Dee, right on point! It’s all about what we do with what we’ve been given…and we’ve been given everything that pertains to this life and godliness, as well (2 Peter 1:3). Thanks for that.

      Lester

  3. Hi,
    Thank you Lester for your wise words about faith.
    Ciao,
    Patricia

  4. Thank you for a post full of wisdom and insight. I love these words: ” your faith has a mandated task to bring into being in your life all the things you put it to work for – food, clothing, health, housing, money, prosperity…everything. Lovely post! Thank you so much for visiting My Journal of prase and liking posts.

  5. Fantastic! Everything is different. How many times have I looked at faith as something to achieve myself – me more the servant to faith. A slave. But the promise is not a slave but a child. You are a wonderful teacher. Thank you.

    • I know exactly what you mean, Sandra…many do, I’m sure. Trying to get our faith to do something, or just trying to do things ourselves…instead of just resting in the promise, trusting and letting our faith do the actual work. It’s a subtle change in attitude, but it’s really critical. Thanks so much, Sandra, for your encouraging words…they’ve blessed me 🙂

      Lester

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