How do we live faith? Where do we begin? Bishop Olmsted of Phoenix offers a prayer for us:
To receive the gift of faith today, to accept the grace of hearing the voice of Jesus and responding to Him in trust, requires an intellect that is ready for contemplation. At its deepest level, the intellect is contemplative because its purpose is to seek the truth. It is not made to be ceaselessly skeptical.
Faith always begins by God’s initiative, not human effort. Nathaniel discovered this, to his surprise, when Jesus said to him (Jn 1:48),“Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.” The eyes of our hearts are opened by the loving gaze of Christ. The origin of faith, the initiative that leads to believing in Jesus, always belongs to God, not to us.
Nonetheless, faith is a human act. As the Catechism points out (#154), “Believing is possible only by grace and the interior helps of the Holy Spirit. But it is no less true that believing is an authentically human act. Trusting in God and cleaving to the truths He has revealed are contrary neither to human freedom not to human reason.” We can dispose ourselves to believe and to grow in faith by taking time for adoration. It is a good and holy thing to say, “Open the eyes of my heart, Lord.”