Praying With Faith-Part 1
My Faith is in the Cross of Christ
Impossible to Please
The book of Hebrews (11.6) says that we can only please God if we have faith in Him. This is a curious idea. It brings up the question, why doesn’t God get pleased with those that don’t have faith in him? I have pondered this question a lot over the years and I have come to this conclusion: Since there isn’t anything I can do to increase His love for me, I can’t impress Him. Since I can’t impress Him, they only way I feel His pleasure is when I have faith that he will come through.
We live in a fallen world. It is so fallen that many people live as if God doesn’t exist. They reject the very reason why they are here. This must sadden God. Then, to make matters even worse, we have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). No one is immune to this. I can see now why the writer of Hebrews writes that it is impossible to please God without faith. Before coming to Christ we lived a life of rejection of our God. Now that we are followers of Christ, we can live a life that pleases Him because he works through us by faith.
I Pray in Faith that God is Changing Old Town, ME
The Main Idea
Prayer is a very interesting thing. God is in complete control and He knows everything. But there are times when it at least appears that He changes His mind (I think of the time when God said to Moses that he plans on starting over and Moses intercedes for Israel). How these two are reconciled is a mystery. This is where faith comes in. Faith believes that God is going to act. Our prayers to God show Him that we have faith in Him because we believe He is going to act. Reader, do you believe that God is going to act on your behalf? When you pray, believe that. I know that I do.
Another key to this is to remember that sometimes God doesn’t always answer the way that WE want. We need to have the faith to realize when He does answer differently, it is for our best. “Father Knows Best”. God’s best is better than anything else. I recently heard a new phrase: “Lay down what is good and find what is best” (Breathe by Jonny Diaz). Now that’s something to pray about.
Prayer is also about spending time with the Father in relationship. He desires so much to hear from you and to talk with you. I know that as I go throughout my day, I look forward to sitting down at the dinner table to hear about the school day from my son and the work day from my wife. And in turn, I want to tell them what happened. God is the same way. He has so much to tell and I bet you have a lot to tell Him. You can’t do this if you don’t believe that God exists.
Pray and See God Act
The letter of James is great resource when it comes to thinking about faith and how you can pray to show more faith. Some of you might be thinking, “Doesn’t James write about actions?” He does. But it is all about SHOWING your faith and that is DONE by ACTION. The verses that follows are great to read over and to pray about. Open your Bible and read these thoughts on the cited verses.
1.19: I don’t know about you, but I need to pray that I will be quick to listen before I start speaking. The slow to become angry part, I have gotten better at over the years and that is because of prayer. Pray and listen.
1.26 & 27: I know that I don’t want a worthless religion or in the spirit of this hub, worthless faith. Let’s be praying that we will hold our tongues when needed. I have noticed that as I get closer to God in prayer, I want to help out the fatherless. Let’s be praying for the fatherless and helping out when we can.
2.14-26: Here is the passage about faith and deeds. The verse that jumps out to me is v. 19. Even the demons believe in God, but they shudder at the thought of Him. Praying that we can show our faith with DEEDS is vitally important. Prayer is one way we can have deeds that show our faith. Not only that, if we have deeds backing our faith, people will see our prayers as being faithful.
3.13-18: God has plenty of wisdom. These verses remind us that wisdom only comes from God. We should pray that we will get wisdom on any situation. Once we know the difference, then we are ready to reject what destroys and embrace what gives us life.
4.7: Submitting to God and resisting the devil takes an act that needs deep prayer. Pray that God will draw near to you as you do His will. Pray also that you will be able to resist the devil.
4.13-17: As we make plans, we need to do it with God. I try to pray as I’m scheduling. Ultimately, I realize what God can and will change things as He sees fit. We need to remember this. While we have free will, God is still in control-these are not mutually exclusive.
5.13-20: There is a lot here. I think I will save this for another hub.
Abraham Had Faith and Acted On It
Having, doing, living faith is so important to prayer. If we don’t have faith, then why pray? It is my faith that moves me to pray. My faith that God is going to act and act in the way that is best in His wisdom. Next time you are praying, I encourage you to look up these verses that I’ve shared here and pray through them. Then be on the look out for the next hub in this series.
While you are waiting, remember to pray, pray, and pray. Early and often.