Mark 9:23 “‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.”
In Mark 9, we find the story of the father who brings his demon-possessed son to Jesus’ disciples for healing, but the disciples couldn’t cast out the demon. The religious authorities took this opportunity to start a theological debate. It was during this commotion that Jesus arrived, rebuked His disciples for their lack of faith and prayer, and healed the boy out of His compassion and love.
“Hope-So Faith” says “I know God can, but I’m not sure He will.” It’s the kind of faith you have when you think to yourself, “God would do that for someone else but not for me.”
“Know-So Faith” trusts that God will treat you the same as He treats everyone else. The key to answered prayer is faith. That is not to say that God is going to give us everything we ask for. God doesn’t always answer our prayers the way we would like. Sometimes He wants to give us something better. I look back on my life and see how when God did not answer my prayers the way I wanted (or thought I wanted), He replaced it with something better, or at least better for me.
Today, we are trying to sell our house. It’s a long shot, and I’m struggling with my faith. I’ve learned to prepare myself for disappointment. My youngest daughter is praying as if she knows God is saying yes. That is what having the faith of a child is. I so want to prepare her for the disappointment of God’s no, but what would that teach her?
Jesus reprimanded His disciples for their failure to pray. Do we sometimes expect God to answer a prayer we never prayed? Do we, instead, argue with others about why God isn’t working in our lives, or why He hasn’t answered our prayers?
“Jesus expects us to grow up and become like Him. He expects us to take authority over the Enemy and defeat him. We are not called to live our lives arguing over why we have no power in our faith. We are expected to minister with the same power Jesus had. He expects us not only to do what He did, but to do greater things as well.”¹
[Read Leviticus 1-9]
Leviticus 9:23-24 Then Moses and Aaron went into the Tabernacle, and when they came back out, they blessed the people again, and the glory of the Lord appeared to the whole community. Fire blazed forth from the Lord’s presence and consumed the burnt offering and the fat on the altar. When the people saw this, they shouted with joy and fell face down on the ground.
Thank You for answered prayer even if it wasn’t what we expected or even wanted. Help me see that these answers are very much a part of who You are and who You want me to become. Help my unbelief when I waver between “hope-so” and “know-so” faith. Help me live patiently while I wait for Your answer. Amen.