Looking for an Increase


The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” The Lord replied, “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.”– Luke 17:5-6

Theologian Paul Tillich defines faith as our ultimate concern — the thing that claims and transforms us, our personalities and our actions. We know such concern has power because we see the damage wrought when people place their entirety in that which is not God.

A person who has committed themselves to accumulating wealth or power, or one who has sought fame or notoriety, has exercised a kind of faith that has been potent indeed. But it is faith in self, or wealth, or nation.

The opposite of faith, for Tillich, is not doubt, but indifference — total lack of concern. Without faith, we are impotent, untransformed, immovable.

So, with the apostles, we say to the Lord, increase our faith, and let our faith be in Christ alone.

This reflection is by Elizabeth Duffy, a regular contributor to Living Faith and to Image Journal’s Good Letters Blog. Her essays have been published by Our Sunday Visitor, On Faith (at Faithstreet.com/onfaith) The Catholic Educator, Image Journal, Mind and Spirit, and Aleteia. She has written a column and blog for Patheos.com and her personal blog is bettyduffy.blogspot.com/. This reflection was from Living Faith, which provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. It can be viewed or purchased as a quarterly booklet of daily devotions at livingfaith.com/. Individual subscriptions and discounts for bulk orders are available.

THOUGHT TO REMEMBER: When you pray for others, God listens to you and blesses them; and when you are safe and happy, remember someone has prayed for you.

About wisdomfromafather

I'm just an ordinary guy walking along the journey of life.
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2 Responses to Looking for an Increase

  1. I guess some increase would be nice
    but I’m good with status quo,
    for facing this real grim disease
    down’s the only way I go.
    It’s not that I reject God’s will
    or it’s my desires that I seek,
    but it’s disconcerting, still
    to find ‘the good old days’ last week.
    If I could have just a break,
    and the sands stop their run,
    if I could but a moment take
    from staring down the gun!
    God says, “Son, don’t waste your breath;
    I made you, formed you, for this death.”


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