It is reasonable to wonder aloud about the nature of faith. One ought to be wary of arriving at too simple a definition. For C.S. Lewis, a great spokesmen on behalf of the Christian, the nature of faith is complicated and something not easily understood. In his memoir, A Grief Observed, Lewis writes:
“You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life and death to you. It is easy to say you believe a rope to be strong and sound as long as you are merely using it to cord a box.”
I believe Lewis articulates a profound dynamic of faith—one never really knows what it is until it is tested. Yet, once tested the true nature of one’s faith is revealed, even when it is revealed to be wanting, in these times, we can reflect honestly about that in which we have placed our trust and whether the subject, or object of trust is warranted.
The true nature of faith is inextricably bound to relationship. As such, it is subject to all of the intricacies and complexities of relationship. At times unshakable and strong, and at other times revealed to be flabby and weak, the nature of faith is dynamic.
But entering into a relationship of trust with the God revealed in Jesus of Nazareth assures me that despite the complexities, and despite my often small offering of faith, I am welcomed into a relationship anyway.
And as my faith is tested, its true nature is progressively revealed.
A Slice of Infinity.
“What gives me hope, though, is that Jesus worked with whatever grain of faith a person might muster. He did, after all honor the faith of everyone who asked, from the bold centurion to doubting Thomas to the distraught father who cried, ‘I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief!’”
– Philip Yancey
“And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ”
– Philippians 1: 6