I wonder if faith is misunderstood. We seem to have a misconception of what the meaning of faith is currently in the church. Faith has become something magical that can heal us when we are sick, make us wealthy when we are poor, make us popular when we are unknown, make us whatever we want to be without much sacrifice on our part. Faith is the coin we drop into the slot machine when we want something more. We pull the handle and wait for the dials to stop spinning, except when the dials stop on something we are not willing to accept we smash the side of the machine believing that it is broken.
That is not how faith works. I am not entirely sure how it works or why it even works because that is in realm of understanding that God only possesses. But I think I do understand that faith is necessary for every aspect of our lives. Faith is necessary for when we are sick, whether the Father’s will is for us to recover or remain in our illness. Faith is in our finances. We need not give money to certain preachers because they tell us they only can give us a special blessing. Faith is demonstrated by our tithing to our church and believing that God will meet our needs. We are not all promised to be made wealthy but He does promise to supply to us what we need.
But faith is most important on our outlook on life and society, and how we act accordingly when adversity comes our way and we face trials, persecution and possibly even physical harm. Look at the people of the bible. God used those who had faith in His ability to conquer armies, tear down walls, overthrow empires, raise the dead, face the fiery furnace and den of lions. He also had some remain in prison, Jeremiah was locked in stocks in the temple courts for his prophecies, Isaiah walked naked for three years, Hosea married a prostitute, Jonah was in the belly of the fish. In the NT, most of the apostles faced imprisonment, public beatings and floggings, rejection by their own people, homeless, shipwrecked, chased out of town. But they never wavered in their faith that all that happened was for the glory of the One they served, not their own.
Faith is simply trusting God, believing that all that He has said is true and will never return void, and being willing to respond to and act on His calling, and doing it for His glory. We may die, we may lose all that we have, but whatever He calls us to do we must be ready to persevere through the circumstances and obstacles that will be set before us to impede our walk by faith.