"One day when Stonewall Jackson, with his sister-in-law, was crossing the boiling torrent, just below the American falls at Niagara, in a slight boat manned by two oarsmen, the current so swirled the boat that the lady became terrified, believing they were going to the bottom. Jackson seized her by the arms, and turned to one of the men and said, "How often have you crossed here?" "I have been rowing people across, sir, for twelve years." "Did you ever meet with an accident?" "Never, sir." "Never were capsized? never lost a life?" "Nothing of the kind, sir!" Then turning in a somewhat peremptory tone, he said to the lady, "You hear what the boatman says, and unless you think you can take the oars and row better than he does, sit still and trust him as I do." (Mackay.) - Biblical Illustrator
"But many who should be strong in faith have but a small measure of it, because they either give way to sin, or are not careful to improve what God has already given." - Adam Clarke
"Faith dispels fear, but only in proportion to its strength." - Jamieson, Fausset and Brown Commentary
"Let every disciple remember that a sleeping Christ is not a dead Christ." - Biblical Illustrator
The Apostle Matthew called it - "little faith." Mark called it - "no faith." And Luke asked - "Where is your faith?" In other words, what has become of it?
Everyone wants to be commended for having "great faith." Oh, that we would all have the testimony of the centurion in Matthew 8:10 & 13 who had Jesus say to him - "...Verily, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel...Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee."
Or how about the praise that the Apostle Paul gave of the Roman believers when he said - "First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world" (Romans 1:8)? Would to God that this would be our testimony and that others would be thanking God for our noticeable "faith"!
But, when we look at our walk with the Lord, we all would have to admit that there are times when we are not operating in "great faith." In fact, our faith is not "great" at all. It could very easily come under the category of being "little faith"..."no faith"...or "invisible faith" - "Where is your faith?"
As we read through the Gospels, we find some very striking statements, intense inquiries, and sharp rebukes coming from Jesus. They are all directed toward the disciples' faith or lack of it -
Matthew 6:30 says - "Wherefore if God so clothe the grass of the field...shall He not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?"
Matthew 8:26 says - "And He said unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?..."
Matthew 14:31 says - "...O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?"
Matthew 16:8 says - "...O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves...?"
Mark 4:40 says - "And He said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith?"
Luke 8:25 says - "And He said unto them, Where is your faith?..."
Today, wherever you are in your walk with the Lord, would He commend you for having"great faith" or rebuke you for having "no faith" at all?
If you are guilty of having "no faith" or "little faith," what could be causing it? In other words, what is at the bottom of all your inordinate care and thoughtfulness?
"Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?"
Could it be because you lack confidence in the providence of God with respect to earthly needs?
Is your faith weak because you are forgetting that Jesus is the Son of God Who is in total control and has the power to save?
Are you allowing "the wind and the waves" to master you instead of you mastering them?
Are you dreading "the wind and the waves" rather than trusting in the power of Christ?
Are you guilty of not using the grace or improving that which God has already given you?
Are you forgetting the promise of God that says - "I am with you alway..." (Matthew 28:20) or that His Name is "Emmanuel" which means "God with us" (Matthew 1:23)?
Or are you giving way to some sin?
Never forget - to distrust Christ when you are in any straits or difficulties is sure evidence that you have weak faith.
Nonetheless, when you see that your faith is weak, let it be an indication to you that prayer at this point must be strong. Begin to offer up strong cries (Hebrews 5:7).
We leave you with a final word from Matthew Henry on this subject - "The weakness of our faith, and the prevalence of our doubts, are very displeasing to our Lord Jesus. It is true, He doth not cast off weak believers, but it is as true, that He is not pleased with weak faith, no, not in those that are nearest to Him."
Allow Holy Spirit to examine your heart to see what kind of faith you are operating in. If you are "little-faithed," then ask Him to reveal to you if sin is the cause of it or if you are simply not improving on what you have already been given - as far as a measure of faith is concerned.
Refuse to have anything but "great faith" - knowing that "...without faith it is impossible to please Him...!" (Hebrews 11:6)
Let it always be said of you because you have "great faith" -
"...Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee..." (Matthew 8:13).
"...be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole..." (Matthew 9:22).
"...According to your faith be it unto you..." (Matthew 9:29).