If you don’t ask, don’t expect to receive.
13 And whatever you ask in My Name, that I will do, that The Father may be glorified in The Son. 14 If you ask anything in My Name, I will do it (John 14).
A child has the privilege of being able to ask a parent for something they desire, and expect to receive. Parents expect that their child should be able to ask for anything, including a pie in the sky request, because they are loved. Just as a child can ask with hope, we can approach our Heavenly Father with confidence, because we belong to Him.
Family is identified by name, which signifies kinship. The Name that connects us with God is The Name of Jesus, The Son of God. If we ask anything in His Name, we have a direct channel to The Father. By no other name are we qualified to receive from The Father. The Father must be glorified in The Son, Who became human just as we are. It is Christ Who gives us what we ask, as long as we believe He is able. So ask anything, right? Anything means just that. But does it? As long as we are bound by The Name of Jesus, we are confined to asking what He would desire for us. His Name must be honored as Holy. Our desire would have to align with His Will for us. So we should pray for what we believe would glorify the Father.
7 Are You not our God, Who drove out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel, and gave it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever? 8 And they dwell in it, and have built You a sanctuary in it for Your Name, saying, 9 ‘If disaster comes upon us—sword, judgment, pestilence, or famine—we will stand before this temple and in Your presence (for Your Name is in this temple), and cry out to You in our affliction, and You will hear and save.’ 10 And now, here are the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir—whom You would not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned from them and did not destroy them— 11 here they are, rewarding us by coming to throw us out of Your possession which You have given us to inherit (2 Chronicles 20).
King Jehosaphat was warned the Moabites and Ammonites were coming to attack him and the people of Israel. He gathered the people, proclaimed a fast and they sought God in prayer. Jehosaphat led the people to seek God for His protection and mercy. Jehosaphat’s approach is one we could adopt when in dire straits. He reminded God of Who He was and what He had done for His people in the past. God doesn’t need reminding, but He must be acknowledged in the context of His Greatness. As we verbalize our knowledge of God, we profess to Him that our confidence is built only on Who He is. We have to be specific about what we want God to do. He already knows everything about us; but trust involves wearing our hearts on our sleeves; expressing how we feel and why. We have to be candid with God to have an honest relationship with Him. Have a meeting place designated for God, a sanctuary, a safe haven, and a place of renewed strength.
14 Then The Spirit of the Lord came upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph, in the midst of the assembly. 15 And he said, “Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says The Lord to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s (2 Chronicles 20).“
The Lord sent a response through Jahaziel to king Jehosaphat: the battle was God’s and they were not to fear the multitude coming against them. Maybe you may not get a clear message as Jehosaphat did. Believe that no prayer goes unheard. God doesn’t need to speak directly, so that we can believe that He will respond. We can lay down our needs at the foot of His Throne and scamper away with the assurance of His Goodness. Do not be afraid after you have poured out your soul to the Most High God. He will not fail to answer according to His Power.
Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, 2 saying: “There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. 3 Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, ‘Get justice for me from my adversary.’ 4 And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, ‘Though I do not fear God nor regard man, 5 yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.’ ”
6 Then the Lord said, “Hear what the unjust judge said. 7 And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? 8 I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth? (Luke 18) ”
Most people don’t like to sound repetitive. If they ask someone for something once or twice, they don’t want to feel like a pest. We worry what others would think of us if we had to keep asking for their help. The widow was importunate to get justice from the king. He became weary of her relentless pleas and gave her what she asked, so that she wouldn’t have to come back again.
The Lord is not unjust and does care for those who cry out to him day and night. We have to keep asking until we get the answer; just like a child who doesn’t stop asking a parent for what they desire. It is the parent’s delight to see the child receive, because of the child’s unflagging confidence in their love . Being repetitive with God shows we are convinced that He is always Good. He will reward us for our persistence and patience. Our confidence in God is revitalized each time we pray. We may wonder why we keep asking and see nothing change; but He will not fail to answer those who never give up on Him. When God acts, He will do so speedily—in the nick of time. When Christ comes will He find us living by faith? Prayer is a bold expression of faith. It takes faith to speak to One we can’t see and ask for great things. If the Son of God prayed often, how much more the ones chosen out of this world?
7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7)
We often feel like we have to earn a kind act or favor by doing something impressive. We don’t think we can get without giving a little. We are transactional in our relationships, so we think God needs us to pay it forward in order for Him to bless us. All we have to do is ask, seek and knock to receive. God will not give us what will not benefit us; He gives good things to those who ask Him. It’s not complicated—boldly seek, get His attention, and ask for what God is willing to give you. What are you not receiving because you won’t ask? Everyone who asks will receive.
13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in The Name of The Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and The Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. 18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit (James 5).
Pray in the Name of The Lord for yourself and others. Prayer is a declaration of our faith in God and a plea for His Mercy. It costs nothing to pray for the sick and the suffering. While the sick need medical attention, they need a spiritual intervention. The prayer of the righteous prevails on God to use the physical as well as the spiritual means to bring healing. We should not put all our confidence on human expertise because it is limited by time and space. Just as Elijah was able to ask God to hold off the rain, we can ask God to manipulate nature for His Will to be done. Elijah was a man, he wasn’t a supernatural being, but was able to pray bold prayers because He believed in God. Pray for the sick, the suffering, and for the forgiveness of sins. Pray for others as you would pray for yourself. Remembering others in prayer is loving them as ourselves.
20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in The Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the Love of God, looking for the Mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life (Jude).
We are sustained by our faith, by continuing in it. Praying keeps us from doubt and self-dependence. We must pray in The Holy Spirit by asking Him to give us what God would want for us. By praying in The Holy Spirit we are not just asking for our desires to be met, but asking for God’s best for us. We are kept in God’s Love when we seek Him first, and when we pray for the good of others.
Faith is built on trust that we can expect to receive. What better way to prove God than to ask for anything in prayer? Seek and find God in every situation you call upon Him. Don’t just put your faith on what you see or what others can do. God is Our Everlasting Father, He has no beginning or end. He is not limited to the laws of nature; He has all creation under His Command. Be candid about your fears and concerns, and detailed about your needs. As you pray, ask The Holy Spirit to intercede for you, so that God will equip you for what He has for you. Pray for those who are hurting and suffering as you express God’s Love for them. You are kept in God’s Love to sustain, strengthen and uphold you, when you pray in faith. Live a prayerful life that is always in constant touch with The Father.
5 My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him. 6 He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. 7 In God is my salvation and my glory; The rock of my strength, and my refuge is in God. 8 Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us (Psalm 62). Selah