I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in all Israel... Luke 7:1-10 (vs. 9)
In this most intriguing story about the healing of the centurion's servant there are so many nuggets that can be extracted to add value to our faith walk. For example, the faith story is not about a Jew's belief but a Gentile. This Gentile leverages his relationship with the Jews to get access to Jesus. The testimony of his goodwill towards Israel is used to convince Jesus that he is worthy of the Lord's intervention. Finally, the centurion exhibits unusual humility for a man of his stature and says that, he is not worthy to have Jesus enter his house. But what grabs my full attention is when the centurion (who interestingly enough remains nameless) says that all Jesus has to do is "say in a word" and his servant will be healed. What causes him to function this way in his faith is noteworthy. Due to the lifestyle, occupation, indoctrination, and history of this man's life, he functions every day by the power of words. It is not strange or unusual for this method to produce the intended results. Words spoken with authority are a part of his daily existence. This means that applied faith can be different for each one of us based upon our indoctrination. Selah (pause and think).
But here's the thing, you can only function in that which comes out of your every day experience. His experience is with the power of words, someone else's experience may be with the power of touch, or the power of sowing, etc. The faith that the centurion developed over time was now available to be directed towards Jesus, because Romans 12:3 says that "God has dealt to every man the measure of faith." In this case Jesus calls it great faith because most people He dealt with had very little trust in the power of words and therefore needed something (physically) tangible to trust in. This man knew from his own personal experience that words spoken by or with authority create (physically) tangible results. If you and I can adopt this experientially then we can apply it faithfully. Make the shift, do less and speak more....shalom.