In Christianity, we put a lot of emphasis on faith. Jesus talked about faith and so did all the NT writers. Before the Law, their was faith and the necessary criteria for believing in God’s promises. That is why the righteousness of God was credited to Abraham, through his faith (Romans 4 anyone?). The writer of Hebrews says that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:1). And how many times did Jesus meet the uncertainty of the disciples with the same retort to their unbelief – oh ye of little faith.
But we can use faith as a work. What do I mean by that? Putting faith in faith. Wielding the faith sword as an accomplishment of our spirituality. Proclaiming that blessings were received because of the mightiness of our faith. I have, can do, am accomplishing because of my faith. If we say we have worked for what we have because of our faith, then we have put the emphasis on our faith instead of the object of it, which is the Lord. It is boasting in our own accomplishments.
I don’t see anything of this type of boasting in scripture or the cause for it. First, faith is a gift from God. When we were dead in our wretchedness unable to respond to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, God in his mercy moved on our hearts through the Holy Spirit. He opened our eyes to accept the truth. Ephesians 2:8 indicates that faith is a gift. That is not just a one shot deal at conversion while we spend the rest of our Christian lives relying on our faith. Our trust is in the Lord.
Second, we each receive a measure of faith (Romans 12:3). This is why Paul says don’t think more highly of yourself as you ought. Believe according to what has been given to you. This ought to curtail the comparison game and feelings of inadequacy when our faith doesn’t seem to measure up to others and compels us to out-faith others. Relax, turn to the Lord. He’s got it and is working in you both to will and work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).
So do you have faith? Praise the Lord for it. Thank Him for being so gracious and honor him by using it in a way that reflects on Him and not ourselves. Use it for the good of the body (Romans 12:4-8). And whatever you do, don’t boast about it as if it is something you yourself accomplished.