Do you remember when you had to take fitness tests in school? I hated doing those. Usually, our P.E. teacher would make us run a few laps around the gymnasium floor, followed by a set of push-ups, flexibility exercises, finished off with chin-ups and pull-ups. As a pre-teen, I had no upper body strength so the chin-ups and pull-ups were a total waste of my time and the teacher's time. I just couldn't do them.
One of the machines I work out on at the gym these days is a modified chin-up/pull-up machine. This machine uses weights to "assist" you in doing chin-ups. You simply subtract 40 from your current weight, climb up on the machine, and start pulling your body up. The point of the machine is to gradually build up the arm muscles so that you can dial down the weights used and gradually pull your body weight up on your own, without the assistance of the machine. I love that machine! After doing cardio at the gym, I immediately go to that machine now because I'm I'm building my upper body strength and the exercise is getting easier. Now I'm pulling up my own weight instead of looking like a beetle that has been flipped on its back.
Isn't that how faith works? The more circumstances God allows us to go through builds up our faith muscles. The more rocky roads we've traveled, the more faith we have for the next obstacle that is thrown in the middle of our road. Jesus is alive and because of that, our faith should be alive, too.
A man of great faith in the Bible was Abraham. Hebrews 11:8 says, "By faith Abraham went out, not knowing whither he went." The Bible makes is very clear--Abraham had faith first before he went out on the journey God had for him. Where did Abraham get his faith? Think back to some of the issues Abraham went through before God sent him on his journey. Abraham had already gone through several build ups of his faith muscles before God allowed other trials to come his way.
Go to any gym and look around. You can immediately tell who lifts weights because they have muscles to prove their endurance. Faith is doing what God wants you to do even when there is an element of the unknown. Has God been building up your faith muscles?