3 August, Wednesday — Growing with Faith

Wednesday of Week 18 in Ordinary Time

Jer 31:1-7
Mt 15:21-28

“Woman, you have great faith. Let your wish be granted.”

When the woman asked Jesus to heal her daughter, she mentioned that “even house-dogs can eat the scraps that fall from their master’s table.” It was a real eye-opener for me that even the ‘scraps’ or ‘leftovers’ from God would have such great power.

I’m not sure how many of us still can relate to this imagery. Today, we feed our dogs the best. We have branded food dogs, we have treats, we take care of their health, and some dogs even go for dog spa. When I was younger, our dogs were fed our leftovers. We would rinse off our plates with a little amount of water, combine it with scraps of leftover meat and dishes, and mix it with leftover, often burnt, rice. This is the image I had of food scraps.

While trying to imagine how anyone would want scraps, I was reminded of this verse: For God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength (1 Corinthians 1:25). So I guess the scraps from God are much more tastier than our Michelin gourmet food!

But I realized there is an important factor also at play here. It’s our faith. Jesus told the woman that her wish was granted because of her great faith. In another story in the Bible, Jesus did not work many miracles in Nazareth ‘because of their lack of faith’ (Matthew 13:58).

This is probably another paradox of our faith. That the faith of limited men, of creatures, can limit the miracles of God, the creator. But it’s not entirely impossible, I think. You see, it’s only through faith that we can believe that every life is a miracle, that the creation of the world is an act of God. Statistically speaking, the chance that life would even begin is really small. I was told that winning a lottery has a higher probability than having all the molecules, all the environmental factors and everything else that is needed to be just right for life to start. And yet, there are even some people who will not acknowledge this as a miracle.

I think faith allows God to work wonders in our lives and with faith, we glimpse things from the eyes of God. And that’s where we see, and discover, the beauty and the miracle.

And we really only need faith the size of a mustard seed to move mountains. I haven’t been able to move mountains, so I guess my faith is smaller than the mustard seed. Realizing how little my faith is and being able to recognize God’s works in my life makes me want to grow my faith more. So I could see more of what God sees, and experience and appreciate more of his miracles.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Stephanie Villa)

Prayer: Lord, please help me increase my faith in you.  

Thanksgiving: Thank you God, for allowing us to recognize you and your miracles even with what little faith we have.     

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