our faith is not our own
Adrienne von Speyr has a quite profound understanding of faith that overcomes the usually traps. For Adrienne, our faith is not our own, but is God’s own vision of himself shared with humanity.
“The gift the triune God gives to man in the grace of faith may indeed have a similarity to the reciprocal vision of the three Persons in God and to the incarnate Son’s vision of the Father, but it is the sort of seeing that befalls man in his pilgrim state; it is a relationship that God establishes on his own terms and gives to man, and at the same time allows the believer to give in return.” Adrienne von Speyr, Light and Images, pg. 39
Faith is our entrance into the triune vision of God as God sees his triune self. In this participatory realm of vision, room is created for response. We could call this response assent or even works, but all faith is within the sovereignty of God’s grace. So the assent or work is already within the realm of saving faith, which is already within the realm of God’s own vision of himself.
To see as God sees himself … this is faith and this faith is not our own.