We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. (2 Thessalonians 1:3 ESV)
Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring. (2 Thessalonians 1:4 ESV)
We know that our faith is growing when we cling to every word of God tenaciously without doubt and without giving up. When we are steadfast, unyielding and tenacious despite trials, tests, persecutions and afflictions we know that our faith is getting stronger and stronger. When we pray without double mind and doubting, we are showing faith. When we realize the sovereignty of God like Cornelius who understood that only God can save and destroy we know that our faith is growing.
The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it. ”When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. Matthew 8:8-10
Faith is manifested in many ways and tested with many things. It is not just when we get answers to prayers that we say that we have faith. Faith is also evidenced by strong patience, persistence and perseverance even when our prayers have not been answered and we are still waiting upon the Lord for the answer.
Look at the case of Abraham and the case of Job. They were not answered immediately. That is because God also tests our faith to know if we only love Him for the goodies. Will we abandon Him in bad times when we are undergoing harsh and severe trials? Do we just simply recoil and give up because of trials?
The devil encouraged Job to give up and die through his wife but he refused. He knew that God was more than he was seeing and greater than his circumstance. He never lost his faith or gave up. At the end He was proved right. God showed up and proved Him right – that He is a good God who never disappoints no matter the circumstances we face. God remains a good and loving God.
We know that our faith is growing when every word of God becomes sacred to us as we uphold it and glorify it. With growing faith we loose fear and we grow in love, peace and all the fruits of the Holy Spirit.
I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building. 1 Corinthians 3:5-9
The Holy Spirit Himself is the one who makes our faith grow by His word living in us through His grace. He is the one that causes the word, seed or plant to grow and keep growing until we produce the fruit of faith and other fruits to a hundred fold.
May the Holy Spirit make our faith strong and mature in Jesus name.