Daily Devotion | Day 293
“Therefore, I [Jesus] say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them” (Mark 11:24, NKJV).
The goal of asking is to receive. Unfortunately, many people are stuck with the reality of asking. They can’t seem to move beyond asking and receive what they desire. They ask a lot, but they receive little, if at all. Why? The Bible gives us the answers, but we won’t attempt to tackle all the possible reasons here. From my experience, people focus too much on asking but they neglect everything else Jesus said about the subject of prayer. Yes, Jesus told us to ask (Matthew 7:7). But that’s just part of what He said.
Today, we want to look at two keys Jesus gave us for receiving what we desire. They are not the only keys, but they are critical, especially the second one. They are as follows:
1. Ask. This is obvious. If you want something, ask for it. Here, it’s important to know exactly what you want and make your request accordingly. But, as already noted, many Christians are stuck at this stage. They sincerely ask, but they sincerely don’t receive. And they keep asking, hoping that one of these days they’ll prevail. What they forget is that asking goes with other things.
2. Believe you have received: Few ever make it to this point. Yet, this is the most crucial stage of the prayer request. Jesus says, “whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them.” This is huge. Jesus will not believe for you. His job is to supply; yours is to believe that you have received. Don’t stop at asking, Jesus says. Right after you’ve asked for something, believe that you’ve received it. If you skip this step, you’re likely not to receive what you wanted.
What does it mean to believe that you’ve received? It means when you pray for something, take it for granted that it’s done. From that point, let your thoughts, your words and your actions indicate that you believe it’s done. You need to start acting as though you already had what you asked. Consider the following example.
You remember what happened at the wedding at Cana (John 2:1-11). Mary asked Jesus to ‘supply’ wine to save the wedding. At that point, Jesus wasn’t ready to perform a miracle, and He made that clear to Mary. Someone would have turned away. Mary, however, wasn’t shaken by Jesus’ response. She went ahead and told the servants to do whatever Jesus told them to do.
The point here is, Mary asked Jesus for something and she believed she had received it regardless of Jesus’ initial response. Mary had not seen wine with her naked eyes, yet she took it for granted that wine had been provided. Right after asking, she started acting as though her request had been granted. In the end, she got exactly what she believed.
This is the point Jesus is making in today’s passage. He says, if you believe you’ve received it, you will have it. Asking is good, but believing is better. Asking doesn’t produce results. Believing does.
It’s time to move past asking. Start receiving.
Blessing: May the Lord surround you with songs of deliverance. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
For further study: Luke 18:35-42, John 2:1-11 and Romans 4:13-22