One of the many common themes in the Christian parables is the theme of unused, wasted, or lost resources. Often in these parables, someone loses or wastes something over which he has been given stewardship. It is sometimes stated how the resource came into hands of the unreliable steward, but sometimes not.
In the parable of the light of the world -- a parable which appears in several of the gospels-- Jesus speaks about the danger of having a light but not using it.
14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:13-16
The light is God's light. God's words, spoken through Jesus Christ, has lit the candle within the believer. The Spirit of God and the kingdom of God are now within the believer. The believer is now commissioned to go forth and to let that light shine by doing the works of God which will cause men to glorify the Father in heaven.
But then Jesus gives a warning: The warning is shown along with the parable in Mark chapter 4:
21And he said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick? 22For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad. 23If any man have ears to hear, let him hear. 24And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given. 25For he that hath, to him shall be given: and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath.
Faith is organic. The Bible says "Faith cometh." But Jesus warns that because faith is organic, faith can also go. Faith comes by hearing, and it also leaves by hearing. If one has little faith --in the gospel, in God's faithfulness, in God's love, in God's power, in God's willingness to help His people-- and if one is not careful, it is possible that one can kill one's faith.
20My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings.
21Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart.
22For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.
23Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Proverbs 4:20-23
If one allows doubt to come into one's heart, then one effectively stops allowing the light of God's kingdom within to show. In Matthew chapter 6, Jesus shows the power of wrong thinking and its effect on the body and the soul. Each thought is that powerful for good or ill.
The Lamp of the Body
22The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. 23But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
24No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Jesus continues his discussion about how faith grows. He had begun it with his parable of the sower at the beginning of the chapter.
The Seed Growing Secretly
26And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; 27And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. 28For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. 29But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come.
Faith grows secretly. One doesn't know how it grows. It is like the wind. It blows and comes in a spiritual way the believer does not understand. But when the fruit of faith is grown within the believer, the believer must use it.
Jesus tells his followers that faith is a small thing when it begins, but it has the power to transform everything.
The Parable of the Mustard Seed
(Matthew 13:31-32; Luke 13:18-19)
30And he said, Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God? or with what comparison shall we compare it? 31It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: 32But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it.
33And with many such parables spake he the word unto them, as they were able to hear it. 34But without a parable spake he not unto them: and when they were alone, he expounded all things to his disciples.
St Paul tells his followers, that faith comes by hearing. This is why Christians study the Bible. By hearing and reading God's words, they begin to see the world as God sees it. They begin to see the power and light within them. They understand how powerful the kingdom of God is within them. Thus when they pray "Thy Kingdom Come" they not only call for the return of God's visible kingdom to the world, but they pray for God's kingdom and God's light to work mightily in them.