By Doug Murrell, Habitat for Humanity International’s director of global faith engagement
Recently, I made my first visit to the Republic of Haiti. Almost two years after the devastating earthquake that rocked the mountainous island, the remnants of destruction are still overwhelming.
I fully expected to find communities depressed and in despair. Instead, I was struck by what I saw in the eyes of the people: dignity and determination, resolve and resilience.
In dire conditions, how is hope possible? As I looked at Haiti’s mountains in the distance, I realized I was looking at the answer. In Matthew 17:20, Jesus tells his disciples, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”
Why does faith motivate?
Hebrews 11:1 contains a simple yet insightful truth: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” In other words, faith is the absolute confidence within us that good is going to come. Faith is both internal and eternal; it cannot be hindered by external conditions or temporal circumstances. Faith remains. Faith sustains. Faith births hope in the heart of a people.
Such conviction drives us to act, or put our faith into action. Faith in action restores, revives, repairs, reforms and re-envisions. It is the language of change and possibility. When I remember the resilient people of Haiti, or other nations under similar duress, it is clear to me that faith inspires the actions necessary to move forward. God has gifted each of us with a measure of faith through his precious son, Jesus Christ, Our Blessed Hope.