Faith and belief are two different things. Faith is much greater than mere belief. While belief may arise from the operation and conviction of the mind, faith never can. Its place is in the soul, and it arises from the opening of the perceptions of the soul. No one can possess true faith unless their soul is awakened by the inflowing of the Divine Love. In Galatians 5:6 we read, “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.”
Faith is a quality of the soul, and increases as the amount of the Divine Love increases. Without the Divine Love there can be no faith. So, when we pray to the Father to increase our faith, it is really a prayer for the increase of the Divine Love. And when we pray directly for the Divine Love, faith will increase as well with each new inflow of the Love.
As Jesus states, “Your prayers call from the Father a response that brings with it faith, and with this faith comes a knowledge of the existence of this Love in your own soul” (http://new-birth.net/tgrabjvol1/jesus42.htm). Or, as we read in the Bible, “faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1). So true faith makes the knowledge of the Love in the soul so certain and palpable that no doubt will ever arise as to its reality.
So to recap, true faith is more than a belief and exists only in the soul. By contrast, belief arises from the conviction of the mind. Since faith is dependent on the Divine Love, prayer for more faith is really prayer for more Love.
Eileen Caddy’s Inspiration about Developing Faith
How strong is your faith? How unshakable?
“According to your faith be it unto you.”
When it is really strong enough anything is possible,
Faith is not just something to be talked about;
it has to be lived, it has to be demonstrated in your life,
“for faith without works is dead”.
What does it really mean to you to live by faith?
Where is your security?
Is it in people? In your bank account?
Or is it firmly rooted and grounded in Me?
Take time to ponder on this
and you will know without a shadow of doubt
exactly where your faith and security lie.
Can you joyously and fearlessly take a big step in your life,
without any seeming outer security?
When you know something is right,
can you do it without any hesitation?
Can you confidently put your hand in Mine
and say Thy will be done,
and really mean it with your whole heart and soul,
and take that step into the unknown
willing to accept whatever comes?
The only way to build up faith is by first of all
taking those small and even faltering steps
and then bigger ones
until your faith is so strong
that you can take great leaps into the unknown
without any concern,
because you know I am with you always,
you know I am guiding and directing you
and above all you put me first in everything
and know that I never fail you.
Why not start to live by these laws now?
Why not cease thinking about it and talking about it
and really live it?
Prove that it does work,
so that all may see and recognise
My hand in your life and the way you live.
Do everything to my honour and glory
and give eternal thanks.
You cannot live by bread alone
but by My word, by My promises
which never fail when I am put first
and your faith and trust is in Me –
in the ways of the spirit and not in human ways.
You cannot build up faith without doing something about it.
You cannot live on someone else’s faith.
This is something each individual has to develop within.
You cannot reach the top of a mountain
by standing at the bottom and looking up at it.
You have to do the climbing,
you have to want to reach the summit.
The deep desire must be there within
to enable you to get into action.
So it is with faith.
You have to do something about developing it,
you have to put it to the test.
If you have a fall, you must be willing to pick yourself up
and go on and on
knowing that you will get there in the end,
come what may.
That is faith.
From Eileen Caddy, Footprints on the Path, p. 39-41