I stepped into a luke warm bath. I had waited too long to get in, the heat that I so desperately wanted to feel was long gone, but too tired and too complacent to warm it, I slipped in, hoping to wash my worries away and numb the pain.
It had been a hard month. No, a hard 6 months. Every corner seemed to bring a new surprise- and not the Ed McMann waiting with a large check kind of surprise- but exhausting, defeating ones. I wanted nothing more than to lower my head beneath the surface, and re-emerge with the worries washed off like the dirt and sweat, however it all just seemed to swirl around me, lulling me to relent to my situation. My initial thought was whatever was happening was supposed to happen and I just hang on until it changes. The earnest plea escaping from my lips, “ok God, then strengthen me in this. Let me be able to bear it.”
How many times have I littered a prayer with “if it’s your will, God…” believing those words were a kind of stated allegiance to God, like, I’m ok with it as long as I know you’re ok with it. But what if I have that wrong. I know I need to accept and live in God’s will for my life, but what if praying doesn’t look like sitting in luke warm water? What if praying and going through trials looks more like burning fire, wild, active and alive?!
In the book of John, Jesus is talking to His disciples about prayer, and He says to them, “if you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be given to you.” (John 15:7, NIV) When I read that, I see myself as a little child facing an adult who says: “sure, go ahead and ask, but I already know what’s best…” B U T this is not the sentiment Jesus had here with His disciples. You see the word “ask” in this sentence in Greek actually means to be adamant and to make your requests confidently known, in other words- demand it! God wants us to not only have faith but have belief beyond hope that He can do it. Now this kind of demanding isn’t disrespectful, on the contrary, it is a confident declaration that you know the One in whom you are asking is completely capable of doing what was asked. As we know Him more, our “demands” will be more aligned with His will and we can have complete confidence He will show up. That’s not to say it will always look as we imagine, but we can trust He is always hearing us and moving on our behalf.
So what does this look like in our every day lives? It’s powerful declaration. Declaring the healed body before physically experiencing it. Basking in the blessing before it comes to fruition. Resting in His peace before your trial has subsided. Declaring in the middle of the grocery store when you are at your wit’s end or when you’re crying in your pillow at night that there is more beyond this, that He’s already paved the way and you are about to walk it through it!
GO FOR IT. With boldness. With excitement. With the full expectancy that it will be done. We may fail to see miracles because we have grown luke warm in our expectancy to see them. Crazy enough, even when Jesus walked the earth, people didn’t have faith, even though he was healing people all over the place. The consequences? And He did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith. (Matthew 13:58 NIV) When we become alive with the promise that He wants to do exponentially more in our lives than humanly possible, then our impossible becomes possible.
Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26 NIV)
Knowing this truth now, what will you demand? (Remember this kind of demanding isn’t in arrogance- its truly out of respect and in accordance with His will.) Does knowing this change how you will approach your prayer time in the future?
Let confidence and expectancy fuel the fire of your requests to a God that is saying to you, “Ask and it will be done.”