How many times have I prayed a prayer that started and ended with these words? Pleading with God as if my begging would move Him to compassion. Not to say that God is not compassionate. He is. He is, however, more moved by our faith than He is by our fear. Isn’t that where I was coming from all those times that I pleaded with Him out of desperation and fear of what would happen unless He intervened? I think so.
Jesus taught many times about prayer. Luke records an example of a friend going to a neighbors house in the middle of the night to borrow three loaves of bread. Although the man initially resists disrupting his entire household to give the bread, he does so because of the persistence (the King James calls it importunity) of the borrower. The moral of this story is where we get the famous – Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Luke 11:5-9
Closer to home, our congregation laid hands on and prayed for a jet pilot that was due to ship off for the first Desert Storm Operation in the late ’80’s. He gave a testimony of his revelation regarding prayer. He said that during many of the training missions He would pray before, during and afterwards something similar to my type of prayer outlined earlier. Then it dawned on him – Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen!! Today, we would call that and “ah-ha moment.”
He changed his prayer and also his outlook by praying a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord for giving him the strength and courage to perform his mission. The Word of God tells us to pray and that we should pray with expectancy and gratitude.
Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
The Gospels are full of examples of how Jesus was moved by the faith some people had in Him. One lady only had to touch the hem of His garment to be healed. My favorite part of that scripture is the reaction Jesus and His disciples had to the whole thing. While throngs of people pushed and pressed Jesus like a herd of commuters getting on the 5:35 out of Penn Station, He felt one person’s touch as being different – because it was a faith-filled touch. When He asked about who touched Him the disciples said – Man. have you lost your mind? Do yo not see how many people are grabbing at you here? (paraphrase mine). They didn’t get it. Her importunity got the attention of the Lord and results that 12 years of effort could not get. Luke8:42-48
There are numerous other examples of how Faith got results by capturing the Lords’ attention. Conversely, there is an example of how unbelief can handcuff God. Mark records how Jesus returned to His home town and was unable to perform many miracles because they saw him as that carpenters son. Mark 6:2-5 They basically said – Who does he think he is teaching in the synagogue and how has he done the things we have heard of?
I also find it interesting that John the Baptist’s father, Zacharias, was silenced until after his son was born so as to not speak unbelief and doubt on the plan of God. Peter was also chastised for speaking out against the plan of God. Our words are powerful and we can either agree with God or oppose God by the words we speak.
So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Mark 11:22-23
Have Faith In God
Believe in God
Thank you all as always for stopping by. Be blessed, Al
Please note that I am not endorsing any kind of “faith-based” recklessness nor do I adhere to the doctrines that some refer to as “name it – claim it”. I believe that there is so much written and spoken of by our Lord regarding having faith that it bears mentioning even if extremists have tried to misuse it. Ultimately Jesus is Lord and we must trust in His wisdom for our lives. Al