When Westina Matthews wrote her inspirational book Have a Little Faith: The Faith of a Mustard Seed (Matthews; $9.95) back in 2005, she was surprised so many were touched by her message that life will work out for the best if you believe it will. â€śThe reference comes from [the Bible verse] Matthew 17:20,â€ť Matthews says. â€śWhere, all you have to have is the faith of a single mustard seed, and you know how tiny that seed is.â€ť
Her book is particularly relevant today with people reeling from the effects of the recession. But Matthews, who recently retired from her position as a managing director with Merrill Lynch, isnâ€™t among those fretting about the future. With faith and confidence, she looks forward to walking an unchartered path and encourages other to do the same.
Got Faith? Matthews offers advice on making it through these uncertain times:
Gather spiritual tools. Whether itâ€™s meditating, yoga, exercise, or a long walk, know what activities bring you peace because youâ€™ll want to turn to them during times of economic anxiety. One stress reliever isnâ€™t enough in times like this, Matthews says. â€śJust like you need to diversify your portfolio in your personal and business accounts, you need to diversify your portfolio in your spiritual account.â€ť
Learn to surrender. â€śSo much of whatâ€™s happening is beyond anything we had any responsibility for,â€ť Matthews says. And unfortunately, much of it will continue to be out of our control. But faith is about believing in a higher power, and while itâ€™s important to take steps to look for a job or improve your financial situation, you must also learn the art of patience and allowing that higher power to work its magic. Matthews admits attaining this assurance takes effort, especially for professionals and entrepreneurs. â€śYouâ€™re so used to making things happen,â€ť she says about this go-getter group. â€śBut youâ€™ve got to know that thereâ€™s nothing too hard for God and believe that all things are possible.â€ť
Get a supporting cast. All of us have times when weâ€™re overcome by fear and anxiety. Thatâ€™s why you must identify those who can be calm in the midst of your storm. â€śWhen peopleâ€™s faith is weak or on shaky ground, you can often find someone elseâ€™s faith to lean on,â€ť Matthews says.