Have faith that you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer. -Matthew 21:22 (GWT)
Some of the deepest things in Christianity begin with the simplest of commands. Despite this fact, we believers often resist these simple commands because it is easily carried over into practical application. I don’t know what it is about human beings, but we sure like to over complicate things until we back ourselves into a corner of confusion and immobility. And when we are in this place, we do not carry into practical application what God tells us to do.
In Matthew 21:22, we are instructed to have faith so that what we ask for in prayer, we will receive. And yet, we don’t pray. We have a slew of excuses lined up to keep us busily distracted and away from speaking with God through prayer. For time limitation purposes, I have chosen three common excuses and will use the Word of God to eliminate any further complications of Christ’s simple command to pray and believe:
- “I just don’t get it.” Prayer is open communication between man and God. It simply creates a beautiful reality in which we have placed our faith in and trust Him to hear us and fight on our behalf (Psalm 108:12-13; 109:1).
- Jesus commands, “Pray!” and so we need to do it (Matthew 7:7-11).
- It is a means of communicating to God the fact that we are not ashamed to be in fellowship with Christ Jesus, His Son and our Savior (Colossians 1:13-19).
- Simple instructions provide deep results. We are promised to receive what we ask for in prayer, should it line up with God’s will (Luke 11:5-13).
- “I already did it, now what?” When we ask God for things in prayer, we do not often receive immediate results – and that can be frustrating in a society that places an overly dramatized demand on instant gratification. We need to get over ourselves and realize that we may not receive heavenly answers as fast as our cheeseburgers and fries at McDonald’s (Psalm 46:10).
- “I need to think about it.” After receiving an answer to our prayers, we may find ourselves in a place of not liking what we hear from Him (1 Samuel 13:13-14). Take caution if you find yourself in this place:
- When you debate with yourself, you may talk yourself straight out of what He has instructed you to do (1 Samuel 13:13).
- If He has provided you with an answer, it is only obedience that will produce the results and rewards you are looking for. Always remember that obedience necessitates the heavenly provision of even greater opportunities (1 Samuel 13:13b).
- Do not wait until tomorrow to do what is required of you today. Is it the right thing to do? Then do it now or you may have already missed out on tomorrow’s blessings (1 Samuel 13:14).
Sweet friends, Scriptural commands such as “pray and you shall receive” are not as complicated as we human beings like to make them out to be. Simply take the time, act out of obedience, and do not allow fear or frustrations to keep you from letting go in prayer.