Jesus said, “I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.”
Woohoo! Love this!
Let me start making a list!
Many have a hard time with these words because we’ve claimed them as we begged for the life of a loved one, then watched them die. We’ve asked Him to stop that tornado or remove that tumor or build that business or stop that crime and we haven’t seen Him answer.
This unbelief is what happens when we take one verse, a few words, out of the complete message of the Savior and base all our hopes, dreams, and desires on it.
Matthew 7:21, John 7:17, and Mark 2:34-34 are a few of the places we see Jesus talk about God’s will and what it means to follow it.
“For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will.” Jesus said in John 6:38.
There are a number of times that Jesus says He has to follow God’s will. In John 6:44, He even says that He can’t bring people to salvation unless the Father draws the person to Him.
So, we know that even Jesus had to pray and operate according to God’s will.
If the Savior of the world, the Son of Almighty God, had to obey the will of the Father, how much more must we?
Back to this verse about asking and receiving. The first part tells us this ask requires faith.
I don’t think that means the in-the-moment-of-panic faith, the kind jolted into action when the accident happens or the diagnosis is given. I believe Jesus was talking about the kind of faith that follows Him day in and day out. The kind of faith that seeks Him in the good times as well as the bad. The kind of faith that is shown by our constant obedience to His Word.
If we have that faith, then when we pray for anything…
If we have the faith that keeps us following Jesus, we will be asking for things according to His will. It’s what Jesus did. Even His model prayer, what we cal The Lord’s Prayer, has “your will be done” in it!
“…believe you have received…”
This may be the most difficult part of this verse. We pray for what we want. We want that disaster averted, but our belief is that He may or may not do that. We might even, in the midst of our prayer, wonder if He CAN do that. This kind of belief is hard.
When I prayed for my mother’s Alzheimer’s to be taken and her mind restored, I knew God could do it. I asked Him to do it. And one day her mind was completely restored, as she stepped into His presence.
He repaired Mom’s mind and her body, but His will was that that would happen in Heaven instead of on Earth. I miss her, but God kept her from having to descend to the depths of the disease, living in fear and loss.
So, while it LOOKED like He didn’t answer my prayer, He absolutely DID.
Before we make that list of all the things we want, let’s build our faith to the moment-by-moment stuff that allows us to hear from God to know His will for us. Once we know, let’s ask big and believe completely that He will fulfill that will. Then let’s sit back and watch Him work.
Coffee, Bible, Journal.