Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from Him anything we ask, because we keep His commands and do what pleases Him“
(1 John 3:20-23)
What does it mean ” if our hearts do not condemn us.” When you ask God in prayer do you ask with your whole heart, or a piece of it? Prayer is such a powerful gift God has given us. However, without your faith it is absolutely powerless! Yes, I said it. Without faith prayer is not activated to give you what you’re asking God for. Remember the disciples prayed to cast out the demons and nothing happened. There faith was missing. The faith needed to cast out the demons was not in them. Something was missing? Jesus made it known to them what was missing. What was needed to maximize their faith! When our faith is maximized we can freely receive whatever we ask for! Our attitude in prayer is in check. What attitude?
When we pray we should not come with an attitude of hoping to hear from God. We should come with the attitude of knowing “as I pray God hears me. ” In fact, while you’re still praying God has already answered your Prayer. Some of us for a long time believed there was a hold or waiting period. A period between the time we asked the Lord for something and the time we received what we asked for. Like the hold you experience when calling a customer service rep. and he or she tells you, ” please wait, I’ll be happy to answer your problem shortly…”
Do you know God doesn’t have a hold button on His phone ? When you call (pray to Him) He is ready to take that call. The Lord is never busy to hear your request. People can be busy to answer or give you a response, but God isn’t! God is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent. He never gets stressed, worried, or busy. Nothing is too hard for our Lord. He is always available to speak to you. To answer your call and provide the answer you’re in need of. Not later, but NOW.
The text continues and says, ” we have confidence before God, and receive from Him anything we ask…” This lets us know plainly that immediately when you pray you receive what you asked. Which means that God doesn’t answer us after we pray. He answers us while we are praying to Him! This is what happened to Daniel (Daniel 10). As he was still praying God released the answer to his prayer. We are no different than Daniel in the eyes of the Lord. He still does the exact same thing today when we pray. The only wait involved when you pray is your delivery. Not God’s delivery. God has released the blessing, but did you receive it? If we have the faith to “ask” we also must have the faith to “receive.” The waiting is in our response to receive. In how fast or slow we choose to receive what we’ve asked the Lord for. ” But JLP, I have asked many times, I have faith, and still haven’t received anything?”
In verse 22 the text says, ” we have confidence before God…” Confidence makes way for the blessing. It makes way for the receiving. I want you to realize that we can pray our entire life for something. We can fast for it. And repeat the process all over again and still we don’t get what we are asking for from the Lord. The problem is not a lack of prayer that is causing you to not obtain what you’re asking for. It is a lack of confidence. You’ll notice in this context faith is confidence. In the Bible they are used interchangeably. When we pray we must be confident.
- Confident that God is real. That He hears immediately as we pray.
- Confident that our prayer is not too big or small for God to answer.
- Confident that as we pray God has already answered our prayers.
One of the most powerful statement Jesus said in the Word came from Mark 11:22-25. It gives an idea of the type of confidence we must have when we pray.
Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. “Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. ”
When we approach God in prayer with this mindset and heart posture what we ask we will receive. This is how God is able to identify and measure our faith. Our faith to receive. You know the Lord honors our faith? He really does. He takes great pleasure in it. And the Lord sees and honors our faith most when we prepare for the answer NOW! Because the truth of the matter is the blessing is here. We have it in our possession. God has already answered your prayer. Did you receive it? Preparing is receiving. There’s countless times in the Bible were we see this in action.
To close, I want to share an instance with you from the word of God where preparing is receiving. It’s found in the book of Joshua. Let’s take a look at the passage in brief. It is found in Joshua 1:11, which says:
“Go through the camp and tell the people, ‘Get your provisions ready. Three days from now you will cross the Jordan here to go in and take possession of the land the LORD your God is giving you for your own.”
I want you to focus on the word ready. The Lord tells Joshua, ” Get your provisions Ready ”
Notice how God works. God gives Him the answer and tells him to get ready. Many of us we’re waiting for the answer to get ready. When God is saying I have given you the answer, I’ve told you before what will happen. Get ready to see what I have already established. To manifest before you. It’s been done.
Friend, in closing I say to you with confidence prepare for the answer God has already given. You are waiting on the blessing when actually the blessing is waiting on you!
“It only gets better from here.”