There are many things that can cause our prayers not to be answered or delay the answers. It could be sin, unbelief, divine, etc. Majority of these are caused by us. We are the one who sin and do not believe, and not God. Take a careful look of this verse in the bible, Mark 9:22-23: “22. And often times it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do anything, have compassion on us, and help us. 23. Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believes. ”
The father of this demon possessed boy was busy asking Jesus if He could do anything to deliver the boy. This is to say that this man had barely trusted Jesus, in other words he had little or no faith in Him. The father lacked the knowledge of the power of God. He might have limited the power of God with time, having answered that the boy had been with the demon since childhood, and as such, he was not sure if Jesus could do anything or handle such long time case; and therefore he needed to ask His ability.
But the truth is that God is able, and worthy is the lamb. Jesus needed to correct the impression and made him to understand that the power of God is abundantly present always to heal all. It is left for us to tap from this power by our faith, that is believing Him (the word of God).
The power of God is like a flowing river that does not dry; and your faith is like a bucket that you use in fetching water in the river. Whenever you go to the river (which is always there), and you have the bucket to fetch water, you would fetch. If you don’t have the bucket, that means you don’t want to fetch the water and you have nobody to blame except yourself. The river does not stop you from fetching the water. And remember, the larger the bucket you take to the river the larger the water you will fetch.
Faith is the currency you must need to purchase any divine blessing from God. It is our responsibility to believe the word of God and it is the duty of God to fulfill His words. The bible says in Matthew 5:18 that heaven and earth shall pass away but no aorta of the word will remain unfulfilled. There is nothing that God has said he would do, that He will not do. (See Numbers 23:19). Having known all these, it is now clear that the ball is always on our court, to decide what we want, when we want it and how to get it with the adequate faith.
We should learn how to stop blaming God for our short comings, rather we should always look back on our faith life and off course our love life. The time of answer to a prayer depends upon the attitude of the prayer or in other words, the approach of the prayer.
Compare the approach of the prayer of the father of the demon possessed boy with the request made by a ruler in Matthew 9:18 “…my daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live. ” Jesus went immediately with his disciples to the ruler’s house to wake the daughter. This last approach is faster than the first approach where Jesus had to first of all teach in order to boost the man’s faith before healing took place.
This is because faith is the platform on which prayers are answered. It is impossible to please God without faith. (See Hebrews 11:6). Jesus would not do anything outside the platform of faith. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God”. (Romans 10:17). The word Jesus told the man booted his faith to trigger the healing.
A familiar way to understand how prayer and answer work is the principle of flow of liquid in a pipe. Please note that spiritual principles and scientific principles do not rest on the same plane since in most cases they do contradict each other. But for the sake of clarity let me use this analogy in science. Consider a tank of water with a host connected to it. According to flow principle, the water can only flow out of the host if there is a pressure difference between the outlet and the inlet of the host.
Assuming our interest is to let the water out of the outlet of the host, then the tank becomes the source while the outlet is the target. We need to increase the height of the tank (the source) above the level of the host outlet (the target) in order to create a pressure difference which is the driving force. The challenges that could be experienced in this process are: the viscosity of the water, the roughness of the host etc. But if the driving force is large enough to overcome all these resistances (challenges), then the fluid should flow in the direction of the target. The rate of this flow is directly dependent on the amount of the driving force.
Now this is the comparison: our faith is the driving force (the pressure difference); our sins, shortcomings or mistakes are those challenges (or resistances) faced by the flowing water; while the speed of answer to the prayer is the flow rate of the water. Therefore if we need fast answers to our prayers, we need to increase the driving force (our faith).
We can do this by simply believing more and strongly the word of God. Whatever God says concerning our situations is final for us. If Jesus says that by His wound we are healed, let it be so for us. If He says that in Him we are complete, please let us be complete in Him by belief. We have to read more of His word to know, believe and practice it for our profiting (See 2 Timothy 3:16-17). It is not good that we stay without reading or hearing the word of God, because the word is where the life of a Christian depends on. (See Proverbs 19:2 and John 6:63).
Whenever we have faith in God, we are actually saying that God is faithful, that He is able and trustworthy; but whenever we fail to believe Him, what we are saying is that God is a liar, unfaithful and weak and that though He has said it but He is not strong enough to stand by His words. This is not true. God is faithful and merciful. He is stronger than any existing and nonexisting thing in the universe. Whatever that has passed out of His mouth does not return back void (see Isaiah 55:11).
In summary, genuine faith does not fail in anywhere or at anytime, for the power of God is abundantly present at all time; so it is in your choice to come to Him with the faith that you got from hearing, believing and practicing the word of God, to tap from His excessive power. This is all we need to do; it is our own responsibility to come to Him with faith and love in our heart.
Categories: NOTES FROM THE BIBLE