“Everything is possible to the one who has faith,” Jesus says to the father of the boy who was healed of the demon, “Lord, I do believe,” the father replies, “help my unbelief.”
People who have had to endure some kind of tragedy or painful loss in their life will often say that when tragedy and loss happen you have only two choices, abandon your faith or abandon yourself to God’s will. That’s where spiritual strength lies.
Faith is not meant to change the circumstances of our lives, it is meant to change us. Living in faith does not shield us from the pain and difficulties of life. It does not undo the past and it will not guarantee a carefree future. Rather, faith is the means by which we face and deal with life– the difficulties and losses, the joys and successes, the opportunities and the opportunities missed. Faith is the way in which we live in openness, trust and love for Christ. In other words- we allow Christ to guide our decisions, our words and our actions. We cooperate with His grace.
Cardinal Basil Hume once wrote about St. Therese of Lisieux: “In 1987 I visited St. Therese’s cell in the Carmel of Lisieux. By the door of her cell, scratched into the wood, she had written, ‘Jesus is my only love.’ That was not written in exaltation but in near despair. She was thus crying out to her Beloved that even when she experienced nothing but absence, emptiness and darkness, she clung to the assurance of being loved and carried in his arms. That is faith at a heroic level– that is trust, clinging to God when everything in our experience would seem to contradict his very existence, or at least his love for us.”
We may all want a deeper faith, but the question is not about more but how we are living the faith that we have. We have enough. The mustard seed is already planted within us.
Photo of Lac Marie by Brother Brian. Excerpts from Father Emmanuel's Homily for The Twenty-seventh Sunday of the Year.