Today’s Gospel reading is from Luke 17:5-10. It’s the famous story of the apostles asking the Lord to “Increase our faith.” The disciples of Jesus have watched him work wonders with many different people. They know that to do such things faith is needed. This is why they are asking Jesus to increase their faith.
Jesus’ answer is really a challenge. “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.” Once again we find Jesus speaking with a great deal of exaggeration. I’m sure you remember from past columns that Jesus uses a great deal of exaggeration when he wants to make a point or challenge someone to do something outside of their normal experience.
That is exactly what’s happening today. Jesus wants his disciples to know that if they have enough faith they can accomplish everything he is teaching them. If they believe it will happen, it will. The interesting point here is that for them to ask Jesus to give them more faith shows that they are faith-filled people already. They would not even think about asking for more faith unless their hearts were seated with faith.
Perhaps today is a good day for us to explore our own hearts. How deep is our faith? Is it deep enough to work wonders or does it need some tuning up? Is it strong enough to change our own lives and the lives of those around us? Are we willing to accept enough faith so we are able to change the world around us for the good of all God’s people?
Peace and All Good!