In Matthew Chapter 17, Jesus is responding to His disciples regarding their inability to cast out a demon from a boy. Jesus identifies their lack of faith as the primary reason the boy was not healed when they prayed for him. We know the disciples were not void of faith, but their faith was not functioning properly. Jesus tells His disciples that mountain-moving faith is possible even when the tiniest, smallest amount of faith is present. God desires His followers to function with great faith despite the challenge or battle faced, because our faith will bring the confidence to pray more bold prayers.
It amazes me how long we will struggle in a situation before we think to ask God about it and listen for his response. Our emotions get the best of us sometimes and we get all bent out of shape. We call on girlfriends to gripe, our relatives, coworkers etc. and often times we even say “I wish God would do something about this” or even better, “I know Gods Got this one” but yet we fail to take advantage of the simplest solution there is. After all options have been drained, we say the silliest thing I’ve ever heard of
“Well, I guess all I can do is pray and ask God to take over”.
WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW were you just as amazed reading that as I was writing it? Its ok, we are all guilty, I am guilty as well and a bit ashamed that I have treated prayer sometimes as my last-ditch effort when nothing else worked. This exposes the truth and the truth is, we don’t really understand the power of prayer or the activation of faith and are quick to forget where our miracles stem from.
I write scriptures and words of affirmation on my mirror daily in my bathroom. I even do this in my son’s bathroom as well every morning. This is our daily reminder to self that we are never alone. God never promised the absence of the pressures of life, but he did promise to give us peace under pressure when we are living according to his will and have activated our faith in him and in ourselves. Often times we fight battles completely alone because we have forgotten the easiest way to a victory. The best thing I wrote to myself as a daily reminder of faith activation is
Faith + Expectation = Miracles
What obstacle do you need the Lord’s power to work through today? What situation or challenges have you lacked the faith to ask for in prayer? Jesus says the smallest amount of faith will produce big results. And those results will have a direct impact on increasing your faith to pray with greater confidence and boldness for the impossible to become possible.
I want you to know that you matter, I want you to know how wonderful, how brilliant, how special, how unique, how beautiful you truly are. I want you know that God molded you to be exactly who he wanted you to be, but now that you exist, he has given you the opportunity to choose. Let’s make your next step, your next choice, the best choice you’ve ever made. It doesn’t matter how far you’ve walked away from God or even yourself, you can make the choice today to come back. See the best thing about God is, he doesn’t keep a score card or notebook to remind him of all the things you’ve done wrong or how many times you have lacked faith. He is such an amazing and forgiving God, he will take you back every single time. He will restore you and make you new all over again, but you have to choose him. He wants all of you, he wants the vulnerable parts of you, he wants your heart.
So, are you asking how do you activate your faith? It’s easier than you think. Your faith is activated by your relationship with Christ and your relationship with Christ is strengthened with time. The time you spend with him, the time you spend studying his word, getting to know him, creating intimacy with him, worshiping him, praising him, surrounding yourself with other believers who will support your relationship with him. You have to “Choose” him.
Think of it like a new man or woman, from the first conversation on the phone, leading up to the first date. How do you prepare? You work out, you shower, get your hair done, your nails right, probably even buy a new outfit. You tell your friends about this person, you boast a little, you may even share a pic. You plan your date, make reservations and close off the world to give your new partner your undivided attention. For approximately a few months to a few years you put your best foot forward and you try to be perfect in every way. You try to find out everything you possibly can to make your new partner happy and you try your best to succeed in this new journey. We talk daily, text several times a day, have dates nights, send photos. If all goes well, you get engaged, you do premarital counseling and you prepare the best celebration your budget can afford, a wedding. You become completely dedicated to your new life and will do whatever possible to make it work. Some of us chose the wrong spouse but we stay and we endure the pain because we don’t want to feel like failures, we don’t want the rumors or we are afraid to be alone.
What if I told you, a relationship with Christ isn’t even as hard as the relationships we choose with each other? In fact, it’s so much easier and way more gratifying. You don’t need to dress up, you can remove your representative mask because he already knows you. Your makeup doesn’t matter and he could care less about the highlights in your hair. The time you take to get to know your partner, you can dedicate to getting to know Christ the same. He will never leave you lonely, he will always provide for you, he will be the source for everything in your life. Make it a habit to talk to him daily until it feels strange not too, tell your friends about him. Like Job, I want to treasure (Crave) Gods words and guidance more than my daily food, don’t you? I want to be able to hear his voice and know for certain that its him and not me talking to myself. God created the gift of communication, that means he indeed speaks, but the act of listening is so desperately needed as well.
How does God speak?
1. God speaks through his word: Spending time reading his word is one of the strongest ways to hear directly from him
2. God speaks through his whispers: he speaks softly through our dreams, visions, he will also direct our thoughts to his plans when you are aligned with him
3. God speaks through his people: He will speak his heart for us through other Christians, encouragement, correction or guidance.
Where do you start?
1. A prayer journal: Write a daily letter to God, thanking him for the many blessings from that day, praising him for what he has done, repenting of your sins and then asking for what you would like him to do.
2. Take undivided time to pray every day, preferably first thing in the morning when you rise to begin your day and even at night before laying down.
3. Find a bible based church and other Christian friends to surround yourself with: you need Christian council and Christian support every day
4. Ask God to reveal every area of your life that is keeping you from the blessings he has for you so you can repent of them, work through them and become a better Christian.
5. Don’t strive for perfection, strive to be better than yesterday, every single day of your life.
6. Encourage someone else, even when you feel doubtful yourself
7. Remember that God can use you, no matter your mistakes: Noah was a drunk, Jacob was a liar, David was a murderer and had affairs, Peter denied Christ, Rahab was a prostitute etc.…. He used all of them and many more,
YOU MATTER and you are needed!!