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Confident to Receive from God

1 John 3:21-22
Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. (NIVUK)

Confidence comes to believers as we know that we are loved, forgiven and accepted by God when we repent and believe the gospel (Mark 1:15). Knowing the cleansing power of the blood of Jesus, our hearts can rest in His presence (1 John 3:19). And that peace gives us the desire and assurance to come to His throne and request what we know will please Him.

Prayer is not just thanking or asking; it is relating and expecting. There is an intimacy of relationship which asks with the expectation of receiving, and thanks with the knowledge of gratitude being received. Peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1) is the consequence of believing the gospel, and enables a real relationship to bond with the Lord.

Prayer within that relationship is no longer a rite, but a conversation with God where we and He know that we are both listening and taking action. We listen to His commands and obey; He listens to our requests and provides appropriately dynamic answers. We please Him in our obedience, and He thrills us with His powerful response to our prayers (Matthew 7:7).

Some believers are nervous to ask the Lord, even though He said that we may ask for anything in His Name (John 14:13). And how many really expect to receive? Yes, we need to be confident to ask but also confident to receive. That is the mark of a real relationship with the Lord. Like in any other matter, confidence comes through open communication and reciprocal acts of love. It is a matter of practice and can start today as we trust and obey - then ask Him to intervene … and expect Him to take action.

Gracious Father. Thank You for wanting me to relate to You so that You can bless me, including taking action in response to my requests. Forgive me for holding back in my prayers, not asking You because I do not think that You will respond. Help me to know how loved and accepted I am, because of Jesus; and give me the confidence not only to ask but also to receive Your answers with joy. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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© Dr Paul Adams