For the Christian, when we run into problems in our lives, we pray to God for deliverance from our situations. For some issues we seek counseling from a Pastor or leader in the church. Sometimes may request prayer from others in the Body of Christ to help us get past our challenges. Utilizing all of these resources is great but I'd like to deal with the mentality we have as we seek relief from our problems through prayer.
Think for a moment about the attitude of a farmer. Farmer's plant crops expecting a harvest. After preparing the soil, planting the seed at the appropriate time, and watering the seed, the farmer sits back and waits for his harvest. And after many days, he begins to see his crops coming in, which is no surprise to him. Obtaining a harvest is the reason why he planted. In fact it would be a little strange for a farmer to be shocked that his crops are coming in. That's extreme faith.
Extreme faith is praying knowing that you will see results, just as the farmer knows that he will receive a harvest from the crops he planted. Extreme faith settles the issue before the seed is ever planted. Extreme faith thinks it's abnormal NOT to get results.
How many times after praying with someone have you heard them say, "I sure hope that [prayer] works? But again going back to my farmer illustration, if the farmer planted his crops, then return home saying "I sure hope that [planting] works" most would think there is something wrong with that picture. It's one thing to pray and seek God, hoping for the answer to your prayer. It's an entirely different thing to pray knowing that you will see results from your prayer.
What I find most is that deep down inside we still think that we can protect ourselves. Our mentality seems to be that if we hold back a little, we can protect ourselves "just in case it doesn't work". It's the old "don't get your hopes up" mentality. Because, if your hopes aren't raised too high, you won't be hurt too bad if things don't work out.
But yet we sing the praises of how mighty and powerful our God is. Come on folks! At what point are we actually going to begin believing that our God is all powerful and hand the reins of our lives completely over to Him?
What if you raised your hopes so high over an issue that they reached the sky? And then, the unthinkable happened....your prayer didn't get answered. Is not the "all powerful" God that we sing about every Sunday not powerful enough to see us through heartache, disappointment, or any other side effect of having a prayer go unanswered? Of course He is! So why do we hold back then?
So we find ourselves in a vicious cycle, going through the motions of prayer. It takes faith to get the answers we want, but we don't want to step out completely and get our hopes up too high, because if it doesn't work, we don't want to suffer through disappointment, but is takes faith to get the answers we want, but we don't want to get our hopes up too high because.....
I encourage you to live out what you believe. Do you believe God is all powerful in your life? Then live in such a way that speaks to what you believe. Stop trying to protect yourself. Stop trying to protect your heart. Give all that you have and all that you are to God and let Him be the protector of your heart. You will find that you've never experienced peace like the peace you'll find by placing yourself behind the cleft of the Rock.
Greg's love of writing and the unique way God illustrates the truth of His Word through everyday life situations has given birth to the FaithsMessenger Blog (http://www.faithsmessenger.com). Our goal is to share biblical principles, stories and analogies in a clear, concise, and understandable way.