Saturday, March 10, 2012

Stretching our Faith

Mat 21:22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.

I have always been intrigued by the promises of God which offer such great promise, yet may not be realized as often as we would like.

Some of the other verses of promise:

*John 14:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

*Matt 18:19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.

*James 4:2 ...yet ye have not, because ye ask not.

*Psalm 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

*Matt 7:11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

So, why are we given these promises, yet await the answers?

Be assured, God will keep His promises. The promises of God are backed by the character of God. But God's agenda is not our agenda. The closer we can get ours matched up with His, the quicker and more completely our faith can be rewarded.

Here are five factors which must be considered in the matter of the rewarding of our faith.

1. Piety - we must place ourselves in a place of blessing. God is not obligated to us whatsoever. But we are His beloved children. He wants to show His goodness and lavish His kindness upon His kids. But, He cannot bless disobedience. That would merely enable our sinfulness. Therefore, He demands holiness from His own. The family rules must be obeyed if He is to grant the keys to the family car to the kids.

2. Patience - God is omniscient and sovereign. The universe is a beautifully designed puzzle which, when completed, is going to be an awesome masterpiece. But all the pieces are going to have to fit together perfectly. That includes billions of lives, events, issues, etc. all meshing together in harmony. If we knew what He knows, we would be thoroughly impressed with His timing. We must realize that, though we are children of the King, the universe does not revolve around our schedules. Our requests, asked according to His will and waiting upon His timing, we be met, not for our desires or on our schedules, but for the furtherance of God's kingdom. Be patient!

3. Persistence - The Lord wants to hear from His kids. The more we get to fellowship with Him, the better. Relationships are built through quality communication. If God were to answer us speedily in every matter, especially matters that are non-pressing, we wouldn't be apt to come back into His presence concerning those matters. Asking and receiving from God is a process of building our dependence on Him, trusting Him, and drawing nearer to Him in the meantime.

When we are told to ask, seek and knock, the language of the Scripture indicates that we are to ask and keep on asking, seek and keep on seeking and knock and keep on knocking.

4. Priority - Mt 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

God is going to bless and reward His loved ones based on their true needs, not on their perceived needs and wants.

All the things that we are trusting Him for will be met in the order of priority. We must keep the main thing, the main thing. Stuff of lesser importance can wait or be dismissed as non-essential.

5. Peace - Isa 26:12 LORD, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us.

The Lord is not interested in complicating our lives with things that will distract us from His will and hinder our improvement. He will only grant that which edifies us, not that which is destructive.

So, keep on asking and expressing your faith. When you don't receive a positive answer, trust your loving Father's will for your life.

Sometimes He has to say no but that is because He only wants the best for you.

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