I often wonder why we don’t seem to be able to perform the miracles that the disciples performed. I long and yearn for the day when signs and wonders will follow our preaching and ministry. I’m not saying that
there aren’t any miracles, we all have seen God move and do amazing things, yet within us we know that more can be done.
I think the disciples, while they were still with Jesus felt the same, they saw Him do amazing miracles and they wanted to do the same. So they ask Jesus to increase their faith (Luke 17:5). Jesus’ response is rather peculiar. He tells them if they had faith the size of a mustard seed they could uproot a mulberry tree. He then goes on to speak about servants doing their job and saying that “we are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty”.
It’s a perplexing response to a request for increased faith. What was Jesus trying to tell them, and us? I think it has to do with our attitude. Yes, Jesus can increase our faith and we can be empowered to perform miracles, yet to what end. Why do I want to be able to heal people, raise the dead, and multiply bread? Is it for my own glory, God’s glory or to help people? I think the only reason that God wants us to do miracles is in obedience to Him and that is why Jesus spoke about servants doing their duty and saying they are only unworthy servants. As soon as we become obedient in the little things, praying for someone, speaking out against injustice, meeting the needs of those God puts on our path we are growing our usefulness in God’s kingdom and God can then entrust
more into our hands.
At the end of the day what I want to hear is well done good and faithful servant, I don’t want to be known for miracles but for obedience and love for God. So maybe the question to ask Jesus is not to increase our faith but rather our love and our obedience.