Understanding God

After Jesus descended from the mountain of transfiguration, he encountered a father, whose son was afflicted by a demon. Jesus dealt with the demon and healed the boy. When the disciples asked Jesus about their inability to cast it out, he said it was their little faith, which raises the question of how was their faith little? Jesus’ response reveals how their faith was small. They clearly had faith that Jesus could heal the boy. However, their faith was small in that they weren’t completely sure that they could heal in all situations like Jesus. Then Jesus said that if they had the faith even as small as a mustard seed, nothing would be impossible for them. Jesus’ statement must be qualified because Jesus did his works in accordance with his Father’s will. Jesus lived and acted out of relationship with our heavenly Father, not according to his own understanding, but out of his relational knowledge of his Father. In other words, nothing will be impossible for us, as long as we are doing what our heavenly Father has directed and led us to do. Again, this brings up another question. How do we know what our heavenly Father wants us to do? The response to this is a relational one. We get to know others, co-workers, our spouse, our children and our friends, by spending time with them, talking with them and doing things together. As we do, we discover their likes and dislikes, as we learn who they are. As we do, we adjust our behavior in order to please those we love. In a similar way, we need to spend time with our heavenly Father, discovering what it is that he desires so that we can live according to his desires for us and for others. Jesus’ promise is that as we live out of a growing relationship with our heavenly Father, then nothing will be impossible for us. Of course Jesus did this perfectly, because of the depth of relationship with our Father. We on the other hand are in the process of learning, growing and maturing in our relationship with God our Father. At times, we fail to realize who we are and we want God or Jesus to do what he wants and has empowered us to do. This is how God’s people operated in the Old Testament. They understood themselves to be God’s servants so they looked to God to do what needed to be done. Then came Jesus, who modeled how we as sons and daughters of the living God are to live. We are to live like Jesus and leave behind how God’s people lived in the Old Testament. Our failures can come when we fall back into an Old Testament mode of operating instead of embracing how Jesus has taught us to live. Our “little faith” can be revealed in our immature understanding of what our heavenly Father is doing in any given situation.

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