George Mueller: Faithful Servant of God, and great role model! (Part Two) What is Faith?

In the third chapter of An Hour With George Muller ( pronounced Mueller) edited by Charles Parsons, and George Muller (Mueller), Mr. Parsons shares George Muller's (Mueller's) autobiography titled Real Faith by George Muller (Mueller).

I have been struggling in my faith lately, so here are some inspiring quotes I've taken from it:
"'First: What if faith?  In the simplest manner in which I am able to express it, I answer: Faith is the assurance that the thing which God has said in His word is true, and that God will act according to what He has said in His word.  This assurance, this reliance on God's word, this confidence is faith...
'The province of faith begins where probabilities cease and sight and sense fail...Appearances are not to be taken into account.  The question is whether God has spoken in His word.'"
Then Mr. Mueller goes on to explain how faith can be increased.  The bolded words below are what I need to work on with God's help:
"'Second: How faith may be increased.  God delights to increase the faith of His children.  Our faith, which is feeble at first, is developed and strengthened more and more by use....I say-and say it deliberately-trials, obstacles, difficulties, and sometimes defeats, are the very food of faith....Just so surely as we ask to have our faith strengthened, we must feel a willingness to take from God's hand the means for strengthening it.  We must allow Him to educate us through trials and bereavements and troubles.  It is through trials that faith is exercised and developed more and more.'"
I am slowly coming to the realization:
"God affectionately permits difficulties, that He may develop unceasingly that which He is willing to do for us, and to this end we should not shrink, but if He gives us sorrows and hindrances and losses and afflictions, we should take them out of His hands as evidences of His love and care for us in developing more and more that faith which He is seeking to strengthen in us."

Below are a couple verses from the book of James that convicted me because I have been struggling with wanting God to strengthen my faith without doing the work with God I need to actually strengthen it because I don't like going through "trials, obstacles, difficulties, and sometime defeats" in order to obtain more faith.  I call them "Growing Pains!"

James 1: 22-25 (English Standard Version)
"22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.  23 For if anyone is a 

hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror.  24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.  25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing."

James 2: 14-17, 26 (English Standard Version)
"14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?  Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, 'Go in peace, be warmed and filled,' without giving them the things they need for the body, what good is that?  17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead....26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead."

I would like to end this post with George Muller's (Mueller's) encouraging conclusion to Real Faith:
"Begin over again, staying your soul in the Word of God, and you will have an increase of your faith as you exercise it." 


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