The Process of Answered Prayers
God wants to answer prayer in such a way that He will be glorified. He wants our lives to be billboards upon which He can advertise Himself. He wants our lives to be stages upon which He can perform. He wants our lives to be trophy cases in which He can display His mighty deeds.
God is able to do more than all we can ask or even conceive of. When you ask God for the best thing you can think of, you ask Him for less than He can do. When you feel that your request pushes the limits of His power, He wants to do more than you can imagine. Leave behind that tame, tepid, play-it-safe, follow-the-rules kind of faith. We have been called to an outrageous faith—a reckless faith that risks everything on the trustworthiness of God.
Faith is not believing something; faith is believing Someone. Faith is not committing yourself to an idea, but to a person. Faith is responding to the present-tense Voice of the Father. It is not knowing how God will bring His will into being; faith is knowing that God will bring His will into being. God’s ways are not our ways, but you can be assured of this: He is faithful and trustworthy and your heart can safely rest in Him.
God has a good, loving, and productive purpose for scheduling waiting periods into the prayer process. When He has called on you to wait, it is because the wait is necessary to the outcome. He is doing something during the waiting period that He could not do without it. Every act of obedience to the voice of the living and present Jesus steadies the heart. As a house is built brick upon brick, so a steadfast heart is built obedience upon obedience.
Everything God requires of you, He has already provided for you. When God provided a ram as a substitute for Isaac (Gen. 22:13-14), He introduced Himself as “God Who Provides.” What does He provide? He provides what He requires. He required a sacrifice and He provided a sacrifice. Through the Son’s indwelling power, He has already made available everything necessary for living out your new life.
Scriptures for Reflection:
“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness” (2 Peter 1:3).
“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock” (Matt. 7:24-26).
“I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope” (Ps. 130:5).
“By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going” (Heb. 11:8).
“All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful to those who keep the demands of his covenant” (Ps. 25:10).
“By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned." Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death” (Heb. 11:17-19).
“Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me” (Ps. 50:15).
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (Eph. 3:20).
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