“I am hoping God will answer my prayers one day!”
We build up our hopes and dreams and fill ourselves with great expectations that God will somehow answer our prayers, yet that day never seems to come. We know that God has promised to answer our prayers, but we don’t know how to make His promises become a reality in our lives. What is the answer to this dilemma?
In the Old Testament, we see Joshua lead Israel to the promised land. God had told them it would be a land of riches and abundance. However, when Joshua crossed over the river Jordan into that land, the first city he faced was heavily fortified with great walls around it. Jericho seemed impossible to conquer.
“And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, ‘What does my Lord say to His servant?” (Joshua 5:13 NKJV)
Many Bible scholars believe that this was the Lord who appeared to Joshua, and identified Himself as the Commander of the Lord’s army. The Lord spoke these amazing words to him about Jericho:
“And the Lord said to Joshua: ‘See! I have given Jericho into your hand, its king, and the mighty men of valor.’ ” (Joshua 6:2 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
If Joshua had looked down at the palm of his hand he would have seen nothing. The Lord wasn’t speaking about seeing with natural eyes, but with the eyes of faith. By faith, Joshua could see that Jericho was already his at that very moment because God had promised it to him. That is the kind of faith God wants us to have. He wants us to have now faith!
The writer of Hebrews put it this way:
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
Joshua had to turn his hope-God-will-do-it-one-day faith into now faith. God wanted him to see Jericho already in his hand!
Actually, faith is not true faith unless it is now faith. Faith always believes it has the answer now before its seen. That is why faith is also “the evidence of things not seen.” Faith sees the answer before it comes!
This is why Jesus said these words:
“Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” (Mark 11:24 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
Jesus said that we have to believe that we have received the answer when we pray. In other words, we have to believe we have the answer before we see it! This is why God wants us to focus our eyes on His promises and not on our circumstances. He wants us to see ourselves with the answer already in our hands!
The next thing the Lord told Joshua to do is put feet to his faith:
“You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days.” (Joshua 6:3 NKJV)
It is not enough to say that you believe you have the answer now – you have to act like it! This is why the Apostle James wrote:
“For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” (James 1:26 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
Another version reads: Faith without corresponding actions is dead. Faith is not just something you believe, it is also something you do. If you believe what God has promised is yours, then you will act like it. Sometimes it’s as simple as thanking God for the answer before you see it!
Each day Joshua put feet to his faith and obeyed the instructions of the Lord. He had to keep his eyes focused on the word that God had given him. On the final day, they marched around the city seven times. When they completed their march, the priests blew their trumpets and the silent marchers raised their voices.
“So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.” (Joshua 6:20 NKJV, word in emphasis mine.)
Joshua didn’t win the victory on the seventh day. He had the victory in his heart before they even began to march around the city. That is the kind of faith God is looking for in us. He wants us to learn to act like we have the answer to our prayers now so that we will see God’s promises become a reality in our lives. That is how to become a now faith believer!
You are holy, dear saint!
Have you acted like you had the answer to your prayers and then saw it come to pass? Let me know in the comments below!
[All Scripture quotations have been taken from The Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright 1982, Thomas Nelson Inc.]