I just want to begin by saying that I believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. It is true. All of it. Whether or not I understand it or accept it. That said, through the encouragement of a friend, I realized today, that my belief falls short. When I pray, I pray knowing that God can do anything. But I often do not believe that He will do what I have asked. This isn’t always true, but in certain matters that are especially close to my heart, it is. There are certain things that I may sometimes pray for, but when I am praying, I am not believing that He will do it. Often, I just don’t pray for it. Why should I, if He’s not going to answer anyway?
It all goes back to the shame that I have held onto for so long. It’s not that in my head, I don’t believe that He will answer. Jesus said,
Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
So, in my head, I believe that He will give what we ask. I just don’t believe that He’ll give it to me! Because somewhere deep within I don’t believe that He wants my joy to be full. That is the shame talking. And it’s a lie. And it’s from the Father of Lies, not from my heavenly Father. He says
The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.
“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!
And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.
Now I don’t believe that He will necessarily give me $1,000,000 just because I ask for it. He is good and He would never give me something that wasn’t good for me. He would never give me something that wasn’t good for His Kingdom. And He would never give me something that would bring Him dishonor. He is holy and righteous. His answers to prayer will only be holy and righteous. And they will be according to His will.
This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.
1 John 5:14
But if I don’t pray it or I don’t believe Him when I do pray it, then how can He answer? He is still sovereign and He’s going to do what He’s going to do. And He’s going to do it when He determines to do it! But He has said that we should pray believing that He will give us what we ask. And I have not done that. In my heart, I have determined that God won’t answer my dearest prayers and so I have not even prayed them.
Time to hit the knees and pray. Without shame. Believing (though not really understanding how it all works!). Waiting. Trusting.