It’s easy to believe that God CAN act on our behalf. It’s harder to believe and have faith that He WILL act on our behalf. I trust that my God is fully able, and I do know that He is no respecter of persons. However, it is much easier for me to believe that He will do for others. I can easily claim in faith someone else’s healing, success, or freedom from a struggle. When my prayers start having to do with ME, that’s when the difficulty sets in. I believe this is the result of two things: a lack of understanding of God’s character and a fear that His will may be the exact opposite of what I’m praying and believing for.
Let’s address the latter first. There seems to be a strong sense of fear in me that God will not answer my prayer in the manner in which I ask. I’m scared of my reaction. I’m scared I will take His no in as a rejection. Now this is not a doubt of His ability. This is a doubt of His goodness. It’s almost as if I fear that I will be let down by Him, and I deeply desire to never be let down by Him. Now, I don’t think that God is scared by this possibility. He is more than able to handle my doubts and insecurities. He uses all things for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. Nonetheless, that fear often creeps into my heart. I’m scared of what loss can pull out of me. I often fear that in the face of loss, I may doubt the one I love best, my Jesus. I fear that in my lack of understanding of His plans, I will fail to see any of His goodness.
As I first referenced, part of the battle lies in the fact that I don’t accurately understand God’s character. I don’t understand that He is for me, for my good, and for His glory. I don’t fully see the depths of His love for me, nor do I understand His immense desire to shape my heart and make me more like Christ, His Son. God cares more about my long term refining than He does my temporary happiness, although He does bless me with so many little things that bring me joy along the way. I say all of this to remind you and myself that God IS good and He is for me. While my understanding is limited, I know enough to know that He’s got this thing called life figured out; and even if I feel like the world is falling apart all around me (and at times, it will be) He still has to be and He still will be more than enough. “I believe. Lord, help my unbelief” (Mark 9:24).