“What can we do to accom­plish the works of God?” (John 6:28)

Jesus had just fed a multitude of people, and the disciples had just seen him walking on water. Take a moment to think about the immensity of these two feats. First, Jesus was able to feed thousands of hungry people with just five loaves of bread and a couple of fish. Then, he completely overrode the laws of gravity and buoyancy by striding atop a stormy sea. And he did it all so casually, so matter-of-factly, as if it were an everyday thing for him.

No wonder, after seeing all of this, the people asked how they could accomplish such feats as well. If it was so easy for Jesus, it shouldn’t be too hard for them. So they asked him to clue them in on his secret and tell them how they could multiply bread.

“This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent” (John 6:29). Evidently, multiplying bread and walking on top of water weren’t Jesus’ first priorities. What really mattered was faith—the gift from God that makes all the dif­ference. It’s the special grace that enables us to trust in our Father and give him room to work in our lives.

What a relief to know that it’s not only up to us! What a relief, also, to know that faith is the most impor­tant thing that God gives to us. For it is through faith that we confidently bring our prayers to the Father. It’s through faith that we can believe that God is on our side and that he is able to bring good out of even the darkest of times. Faith urges us to seek the Lord and his goodness. It prompts us to live in obedience to God’s laws, knowing that his way is the best way. Ultimately, to live with­out faith is to live without hope!

Today in prayer, thank the Lord for the gift of faith. Tell him that you want to combine your own acts of faith with the grace he has given you. Tell him that you want to learn how to surrender more deeply to “him who is able to accomplish far more than all we ask or imagine, by the power at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20).

“Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief!”

Acts 6:8-15 Psalm 119:23-24,26-27,29-30