GOD'S PROMISE ON PRAYER
14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 John 5:14-15
As we begin to walk through the ideas of God's promises, we definitely want to start at the beginning which is diving into God's promise on prayer. I know that many of us have a lot of thoughts on prayer and how we offer them to God and how God responds. I know what many of us think that God only hears our prayers when we have something that shows us yes or no to our request. I can honestly tell you from my experience, that God is not a wish maker, but one who is ready to reveal His plans in His timing. Sometimes that means we are able to see a form of yes in our prayers. Other times it may be obvious that the answer to our prayer may be no. For instance, please God help me to pass this test and I promise that I will study better next time. Not a real prayer we should expect a yes response. But a lot of the times, our prayers are answered with the response wait. And yes, I know that that may be the worst response of them all for a society who hates to wait one minute for toast to pop up out of the toaster, but it is the answer that many of us face when we lay our prayers before God.
It does not mean that there is not a response from God or that God has not heard our prayers. I firmly believe that as soon as the words leave our lips they are immediately heard in God's ears. I believe that God is faithful and just and will answer our prayers in the time that they need to be answered. We are in such a rush to want to move to the next thing, and
maybe God is trying to prepare us for what the next part of the journey may actually look like. A promise is something that God takes serious, and unfortunately for us, a promise is something that many of us are quick to break if it means we will suffer pain or gain riches. I know that I have heard the phrase I PROMISE by so many people in my life, and then moments later it is like they never made the commitment. When it comes to God's promises, they are commitments. They are covenants that God has with His Creation and they are meant to be personal and intentional. One example is the rainbow in the sky following the flood of the world. God promised never to destroy the world like that ever again and His rainbow is a representation of that promise. So I hope and pray that we realize that God sees our prayers not only as an opportunity to communicate with us, but as the prayers are answered, they become a promise from God that His will for our lives will be revealed through putting our prayers into action. A promise is a commitment and through our prayers God gives us the chance to humble our hearts and present our requests straight to HIM. What other god in all of the religions of the world is willing to be that connected to their creation.... only ONE. Yahweh.
As we read the words from 1 John 5 today, we recognize the power of the promise of prayer. We are given confidence that we can approach God with our requests. We are given assurance that God will hear them, but there is a caveat in the scripture today. Remember God's promise is to hear if it is according to HIS WILL. Not ours. Thank God that we are not the one who has to answer prayers each week, because we definitely would. We would answer them for the benefit of how we see the world. If we are truly seeking answers that are not to just benefit our wants, God is going to reveal His Will through the promise of answered or unanswered prayers. Yes, I know that many of you are saying that may be confusing, but the reality still helps us see the truth through today's scripture. It is not that God does not want to answer our prayers, but that His promise is to listen to the prayers that pertain to His Will and reveal His purpose accordingly. As I said earlier, thank God that He did not promise to answer all of our prayers, but that we develop this connection with God to fulfill the promise that glorifies God. I know that may sound confusing and some people would say that it sounds really selfish of God, but the reality is that His promises are for the glory of God in all of creation. Not just for our benefit in our time.
The true emphasis is on God's will and not our own. We are not called to demand from God what we want like a spoiled child, but that our prayers are meant to help us discern what God wants for our lives. When we are able to look back over our lives, we are truly able to see all of the promises that God has provided for us. In the moment, we get so caught up
on the instant the we fail to realize that God may need us to grow a little more to fully understand the promise He is trying to reveal. God does listen.... I know that for a fact, but I also know that God's promise with prayer is to help us navigate through the uncertainty and the chaos. God has promised that He will never leave us or forsake us and that if we confess with our mouth and believe in our hearts that Jesus is Lord, we will be saved. I could go on and on and on about places where God's promises are constantly being revealed. I just want us to take for certain the power that God does hear our prayers. God hears our cries for help and cries for joy. God is attuned to our voice and promises to answer if we call. It just may not be in the way or time in which we feel we deserve. May we take strength in the promise that God hears the prayers of His creation and provides for us the knowledge to know that what we ask for in His name will be fulfilled in God's way and God's timing.