“If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” — Matthew 21:22
There are several things that I’d love to accomplish and that I desire, right now. In fact, I’d go on to say that two of those things are things that I’ve been desiring for the past couple of months or maybe even the past year. The enemy has been using those things a lot to try to discourage me from following God’s will for my life and instead try to force my own. The enemy has been trying to make going back to a life of sin look more appealing as if it won’t lead to death and separation from God.
Last night, I hit my breaking point. After talking to my boyfriend about some concerns that I had and still feeling very down and out, I sobbed last night talking to the Lord. I finally told Him EVERYTHING that was plaguing my heart and everything that I’d be keeping inside. I was honest about what I was feeling. I was honest about my fear and discontentment that was brewing in my heart. I told him about how I desire to be a wife, how I desire to serve more, and how I desperately want to hear from Him more. I tried not to share those things because every time a thought would come in I kept trying to remind myself that God had a plan and that just because a thought came in didn’t mean I needed to entertain it. Yes, that was true, but sometimes those thoughts were rooted in fears and other things that were much deeper than a passing thought. I kept dismissing what I was feeling without going to the Lord about it because I felt that in doing so I was being ungrateful or even insulting to Him. I never want to insult God and I felt that by admitting what I was feeling (even though God already knows), I’d be doing just that.
“What do you mean you’re afraid? You’re not really Christian if you’re afraid of what the future will hold for you.”
“A real Christian would have more faith than what you have.”
“See? This person isn’t Christian and has everything you want…”
I’ve heard these comments and more within the past couple of weeks. I’ve allowed them to shame me from being honest about what I was feeling. Yes, it’s great to focus on the positive and focus on the great things that God is doing, but I also think that by trying to push away the concerns of my heart I wasn’t being honest with myself or with God.
I almost imagine Him sitting above on His throne as I am consistently trying to pretend that what I’m feeling in my heart isn’t real, wanting me to be real with Him. I imagine Him softly reminding me that I CAN be real with Him and that although He knows my heart, He wants me to share what’s bothering me with Him and that He won’t judge me.
So that’s what I did. I laid everything out there and shared my discouragements, my pain, my stress, and everything that I’ve been hiding behind this facade behind. Yes, the Lord is trustworthy, but it served no purpose in me trying to pretend that I was doing such an awesome job at being content, when deep down inside I was shaking in my boots with fear of the future and desiring certain things. I realized last night again that God wants us to be honest with Him. He wants us to be real. I believe in reinforces our relationship with Him and continues to build that trust.
But Do I Believe?
Something that was reminded of this morning was the story of Abraham and how I need to have faith in what I pray for and what God reveals to me. Abraham had faith in what God had for Him — or at least that’s what I got from it. In fact, the word states, “And he believe in the Lord and He accounted it to him for righteousness.” (Genesis 15:6).
Abraham didn’t doubt God. Although, it looked impossible in the natural, Abraham knew that when God said something He meant it and that He keeps His promises.
God has told me to trust Him and that He’ll take care of me. He’s reminded me that I have nothing to worry about it and that I should seek Him and allow Him to handle all of the concerns of my heart. Why is that when faced with the fire, I feel so troubled?
I do believe. In fact, I am certain of what God has promised me, but I also have to not allow my emotions to dictate whether I believe in what I’ve prayed for either. Prayer works, but it’s also coupled by faith. What’s the point of praying if I don’t believe that God will answer my prayer according to His will? That prayer might be answered with a “no” or it may be answered much later than I expected. That does not make it any less of an answered prayer. In all things I must believe in Christ and believe He’ll answer my prayers, but according to His will. That means that it might not occur when I want it or how I expect it to be answered, but that doesn’t mean God doesn’t hear it.
I am also reminded that God cares about the little things that concern me. But in all things I need to seek His kingdom first and give those things to Him. This does not mean pushing them away by my own strength and assuming they’ll never return. But it does mean sharing these concerns honestly and openly with God, and trusting that He’ll handle it all according to His will.
Although, this is still very difficult for me, I am so grateful for the ways God has been showing me His heart towards us all. I am grateful that I can count on Him to be there and that He’s a constant figure when there’s so many things changing around me. I am confident that although my circumstances will often change, God and His heart for us won’t.