by George Mueller (Founder of the Orphanages at Bristol, England)
“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear” (Hebrews 11:1).
FIRST: WHAT IS FAITH? In the simplest manner in which I am able to express it, I answer: Faith is the assurance that the thing which God has said in His Word is true, and that God will act according to what He has said in His Word. This assurance, this reliance on God’s Word, this confidence is FAITH.
NO IMPRESSIONS ARE TO BE TAKEN IN CONNECTION WITH FAITH. Impressions have neither one thing nor the other to do with faith. Faith has to do with the Word of God. It is not impressions, strong or weak, which will make any difference. We have to do with the written Word and not ourselves or our impressions.
PROBABILITIES ARE NOT TO BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT. Many people are willing to believe regarding those things that seem probable to them. Faith has nothing to do with probabilities. The province of FAITH begins where probabilities cease and sight and sense fail. A great many of God’s children are cast down and lament their want of Faith. They write to me and say that they have no impressions, no feeling, they see no probability that the thing they wish will come to pass.
APPEARANCES ARE NOT TO BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT. The question is – whether God has spoken it in His Word.
And now, beloved Christian friends, you are in great need to ask yourselves whether you are in the habit of thus confiding, in your inmost soul, in what God has said, and whether you are in earnest in seeking to find whether the thing you want is in accordance with what He has said in His Word.
SECOND: HOW FAITH MAY BE INCREASED. God delights to increase the Faith of His children. Our Faith which is feeble at first, is developed and strengthened more and more by us. We ought, instead of wanting no trials before victory, no exercise for patience, to be willing to take them from God’s hand as a means. I say – and say it deliberately – trials, obstacles, difficulties, and sometimes defeats, are the very food of Faith. I get letters from so many of God’s dear children who say: “Dear Brother Mueller, I’m writing this because I am so weak in faith.” Just so surely as we ask to have our Faith strengthened, we must feel a willingness to take from God’s hand the means for strengthening it. We must allow Him to educate us through trials and bereavements and troubles. It is through trials that Faith is exercised and developed more and more. God affectionately permits difficulties, that He may develop unceasingly that which He is willing to do for us, and to this end we should not shrink, but if He gives us sorrow and hindrances and losses and afflictions, we should take them out of His hands as evidences of His love and care for us in developing more and more that Faith which He is seeking to strengthen in us.
The Church of God is not aroused to see God as the beautiful and lovable One He is, and hence the littleness of blessedness. Oh, beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, seek to learn for yourselves, for I cannot tell you the blessedness! In the darkest moments I am able to confide in Him, for I know what a beautiful and kind and lovable Being He is, and, if it be the will of God to put us in the furnace, let Him do it, that so we may acquaint ourselves with Him as He will reveal Himself, and that we may know Him better. We come then to the conclusion that God is a lovable Being, and we are satisfied with Him, and say: “It is my Father, let Him do as He pleases.”
When I first began to allow God to deal with me, relying on Him, taking Him at His Word, and set out fifty years ago simply relying on Him for myself, family, taxes, traveling expenses and every other need, I rested on the simple promises I found in the sixth chapter of Matthew. Read Matthew 6:25-34 carefully. I believed the Word, I rested on it and practiced it. I took God at His word. A stranger, a foreigner in England, I knew seven languages and might have used them perhaps as a means of remunerative employment but I had consecrated myself to labor for the Lord, I put my reliance in the God who has promised, and He has acted according to His Word. I’ve lacked nothing – nothing. I have had my trials, my difficulties, and my purse empty, but my receipts have aggregated thousands of dollars, while the work has gone on these 51 years. Then, with regard to my pastoral work; for the past 51 years I have had great difficulties, great trials and perplexities. There will always be difficulties, always trials. But God has sustained me under them and delivered nw out of them, and the work has gone on. Now, this is not, as some have said, because I am a man of great mental power, or endowed with energy and perseverance – these are not the reasons. It is because I have confided in God; because I have sought God, and He has cared for the Institution, which, under His direction, has 100 schools, with masters and mistresses and other departments which I have told you before.
I do not carry the burden. And now in my 67th year, I have physical strength and mental vigor for as much work as when I was a young man in the university, studying and preparing Latin orations. I am just as vigorous as at that time. How comes this? Because in the last half century of labor I’ve been able, with the simplicity of a child, to rely upon God. I have had my trials, but I have laid hold upon God, and so it has come to pass that I have been sustained. It is not only permission, but positive command that He gives, to cast the burdens upon Him. Oh, let us do it! My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, “Cast thy burden upon the Lord and He shall sustain thee.” Day by day I do it. This morning sixty matters in connection with the church of which I am pastor, I brought before the Lord, and thus it is, day by day I do it, and year by year; ten years, thirty years, forty years.
Do not, however, expect to obtain full Faith at once. All such things as jumping into full exercise of Faith in such things I discountenance. I do not believe in it. I do not believe in it. I DO NOT BELIEVE IN IT, AND I WISH YOU PLAINLY TO UNDERSTAND I DO NOT BELIEVE IN IT. All such things go on in a natural way. The little I did obtain, I did not obtain all at once. All this I say particularly, because letters come to me full of questions from those who seek to have their Faith strengthened. Begin over again, staying your soul on the Word of God, and you will have an increase of your Faith as you exercise it.
One thing more. Some say, “Oh, I shall never have the gift of Faith Mr. Mueller has got.” This is a mistake – it is the greatest error – there is not a particle of truth in it. My Faith is the same kind of Faith that all of God’s children have had. It is the same kind that Simon Peter had, and all Christians may obtain the like Faith. My Faith is their Faith, though there may be more of it because my Faith has been a little more developed by exercise then theirs; but their Faith is precisely the Faith I exercise, only, with regard to degree, mine may be more strongly exercised.
Now, my beloved brothers and sisters, begin in a little way.
At first I was able to trust the Lord for ten dollars, then for a hundred dollars, then for a thousand dollars, and now, with the greatest ease, I could trust Him for a million dollars, if there was occasion. But first, I should quietly, carefully, deliberately examine and see whether what I was trusting for, was something in accordance with His promises in His written Word.
I blessed by your work
Sincerely,this is a great work
My name is Greg. My wife Dalena and I lost our youngest son Trevor age (25) to a drug overdose on December 19, 2014. Dalena had gone into the hospital the second week of last December and had surgery to remove scar tissue blocking her intestines that was a result of a surgery that removed her stomach due to stomach cancer in 2009. Trevor had been struggling with an addiction to Oxycodone but had just been through rehabilitation and was getting a handle on it. When Dalena was discharged from the hospital she was prescribed Dilaudid for pain management. Trevor found her prescription and not realizing that Dilaudid is three times the potency of Oxycodone he took too much of it and it stopped his respiratory system and he died. We know that he is with Our Lord Savior and God now and no longer suffers from his addiction. I am struggling to have the faith that I will see him again when the Lord returns and raises those that sleep in Christ. Please pray for us that our faith may be strengthened and that we can move forward seeking the Lord’s will.
Thank you – Greg
Greg and Dalena – I am so sorry for the loss of your son. I will pray for you. Yes, He is in Heaven and you will see and enjoy his company there forever, but the loss of time here is real and terrible. I just speak peace, grace, and God’s power and comfort all over all you guys. And, healing for your wife in Jesus Name.
I don’t pretend to know why everything happens the way it does in this life but I do know that we can overcome it with God’s help, and that God is a good and loving God. Heaven’s consolation will be more than enough for you guys and for Trevor. Be assured, you WILL see him again and with incredible peace in his eyes in Heaven. After a millennia or two, this all will be only a distant memory.
Why don’t you read the free online book Intra Muros. It is a classic book on Heaven. It will encourage you about those that have gone on before. Churches have been giving it out for over a hundred years. It is really a great little book!
Let God bless your hearts so you can do well during future Holidays. They can be a tough time for many, but God can change that for you. Talk to Him like a close friend. He will comfort you. You will make it through. Try to let go of the ‘whys’ for a good while. The peace will come, and the confidence in the relationship with God will restore. We love you. Rex
Rex – Thank you for your words of hope, faith and encouragement. I read the book Intra Muros that you recommended and it is a beautiful story of what heaven might be as understood by our human minds that fall very short of understanding what the full power and joy will be in our everlasting life with Christ the Lord, God and the Holy Spirit. Thank you for sharing with us. The Lord our God be with you…
Greg & Dalena
I like how Janice in these testimony here talks and prays to Jehovah Jireh.
she has a intimate relationship God Bless you.
Thank You for another day. Thank You that me and my family and my friends are safe. Thank You Lord that we slept warmly, that we have a house and a car, that we have food. Thank You that You special favour is upon me, that i am so blessed. God knowing You means everything to me, experiencing Your faitfulness, mercy and provision daily just fills me with even more adoration, honour and worship for You. You are the King of all, glory to Your name.
I thank You now God, that today i will receive Your blessings afresh, Your mercies are new each morning, thank You that today Your special favour is upon me, wherever i go i will touch hearts, whatever i do will prosper, whoever i meet Your annointing will be upon me, i am Yours God. Thank You for the honour of being a child of the Kingdom, a heir, a conqerour, a victor in the name of Jesus. Thank You that today- all debts are paid, doors are opened and i am walking under the protection of the blood of Jesus.
God Your word is the truth, today i meditate on Your word as in stands in Josh: 1 V9 : [b]Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
I thank You that wherever i go today, Your favour will be upon me, i am blessed, i am blessed, i am blessed in Jesus Name
Wow this is great
Dodie Thank you for your willingness to be used of the Lord…..i am being healed of parkinsons..i am standing on the Word for healing..i read your testimony about every day..i am sure many of Gods people read your writings every day,,i have 6 children and my husband died 6 yrs ago..Thanks so much for being there for me and many others,,Love Connie Hultquist