Degrees Of Faith
There are degrees to faith. At one stage of Christian experience we cannot believe unless we have some sign or some great manifestation of feeling. We feel our fleece, like Gideon, and if it is wet we are willing to trust God. This may be true faith, but it is imperfect. It always looks for feeling or some token or sign besides the Word of God.
It marks quite an advance to faith when we trust God without feelings. We feel our fleece and find it dry, and yet we see that upon everyone about us there is the manifestation of God's blessing. It is blessed to believe without having any emotion.
"Blessed are they that have not seen (or felt), and yet have believed" (John 20:29).
There is a third stage of faith which even transcends that of Gideon and his fleece. The first phase of faith believes when there is favorable emotion, the second believes when there is absence of emotion; but this third form of faith believes God and His Word when circumstances, emotions, appearances, people and human reason all urge to the contrary. Paul exercised this faith in Acts 27:20 and 25:
"And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away… (notwithstanding all this Paul said) Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me."
May God give us the faith to fully trust His Word though everything else witnesses the other way.
– C. H. P.