Praying God’s Promises For Provision
God’s Promises for Provision And How to Pray Them
It’s in times of uncertainty we engage in a battle between hope and fear. It also feels more difficult to have faith when things aren’t going well. It’s even harder when you don’t know how long the difficulty will last. In times like these we hang onto hope. It keeps us going and brings with it the possibility that things will change. But hope without a solid foundation is only wishful thinking. Without a firm foundation hope rests on the wish or the chance that things could change, but nothing more. Of course as believers in Christ, we place our hope in Him as the living Lord who rules over all. He’s the One who saves, delivers, and frees. He heals the sick and has conquered the power of sin, sickness, and death. He is worthy of our trust because His has proven Himself faithful to all He’s said. The Lord Jesus Christ then is the only solid and reliable anchor and foundation for having hope in this life and the next.
You Can Count on God’s Promises
In 2 Peter 1:4 the Bible says, “He’s given us His very great and precious promises” and it’s through these promises that we participate in the things that are part of God’s nature. His promises also enable us “to escape the world’s corruption that is caused by human desires.” The Scriptures themselves testify to the reliability of God’s promises. For example:
2 Corinthians 1:20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.
Hebrews 6:18a So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie.
Psalm 138:2 I bow before your holy Temple as I worship. I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness; for your promises are backed by all the honor of your name.
Joshua 23:14 -You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.
Promises to Pray, Declare, & Appropriate
And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”
So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
You don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it. And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong—you want only what will give you pleasure.”
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”
Putting It All Together, Practically
As an example, you can personalize the following prayer outline:
Verbalize your specific need to God in audible prayer while declaring His promises.
“Lord I thank you for who you are as my Father, Lord, and Provider. You are faithful to who you are and to all you say. I gratefully acknowledge your faithful provision in my life. I remember how you’ve provided for me (us) in times past. (Verbalize your recollections of how God has provided for you in both the past and the present).
Now Lord, I ask you to meet my (our) need for _________ at this time. For you have said, (state or declare the promises in His Word or some of those written in this article)
With the authority Christ has given you, forbid any hindrance or barrier to your reception of His provision and the fulfillment of His promises.
“In Jesus’ name, I forbid any means that is seeking to or is hindering God’s promises and provision for my life at this time. I command that all spiritual influences of evil be bound and unable to interfere with what God has promised to provide for me. For Jesus said and it is written, ‘Satan has come only to kill, steal, and destroy.’ Therefore, I forbid you from doing so and now cancel any effects you’ve had to rob me of God’s provision in Jesus’ name. Lord Jesus, I put my trust in you and the promises you’ve made, for you are faithful to bring them about according to your Word.”
Also ask for the counsel of the Holy Spirit whom God promises in His Word would counsel you into all truth.
“I ask that you Holy Spirit would show me what you would have me do and what my part is in bringing about your provision at this time. I also ask that you would reveal any hindrances to your provision. And, in Jesus’ name, I command any hindrances to come into the light of Christ, without confusion, and be subject to the truth He wants to reveal to me.”
Take some time to listen to His counsel and wait upon the Lord as you continue to seek Him. I’ve found it much more beneficial to pray with one or more persons when seeking the Lord’s counsel and discernment in matters like these. He’s given us the Body of Christ to gather and to seek His counsel together where other’s gifts can be utilized. This of course can be done in your home or by phone or video chat as well.
Don’t forget to steward these things in prayer regularly. Record or journal them as a foundation for worship, remembrance, and to recall His faithfulness in the future. It will build your faith and increase your confidence in the Lord!
In the meantime, practice his promise given in Philippians 4:4-7:
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
If there’s ever a time we can and should BE the Body of Christ, it’s now. The Bible gives priority to taking care of the people of God – His Family (Galatians 6:10) Before we just jump in to help with other causes, I believe we should first pray and ask the Lord how He wants to direct the money He’s provided and entrusted us to manage. We mustn’t let compassion alone be our guide. For one thing, compassion is not a uniquely Christian virtue. Besides, it’s something the enemy loves to use to deceive us. He does it all the time and we end up paying for it. Not only does he use it to steal our joy and strength, we are also robbed of abundant life. Plus compassion apart from the leading of the Holy Spirit rarely results in anything of lasting value or biblical fruit. That’s why it’s important to submit our compassionate feelings and thoughts to Christ and seek His counsel before we act on compassion alone.
If you’re someone who feels deeply and frequently experiences great compassion for others in need, you may find it difficult at times to discern between your emotions and what Jesus is directing you to do. Your default might even be to act before discerning. You simply see a need and are willing to meet that need. It’s likely you’re gifted by God in the area of mercy. Besides that you’re just an amazing, caring, and giving person! You are an essential part of the Body of Christ and God absolutely uses you. If this fits your profile and others say the same about you, you may also need the help of others in the Body to help you discern what Jesus is actually leading you to do—including when or to what extent you should be involved. If you get over-involved you may just miss out on the peace He wants for you and the fruit of doing only what the Father is doing.[While many would argue that Jesus was led by compassion, the New Testament show us that it was His Father who directed every aspect of His life and the decisions He made (John 5:19,20,30; 8:28; 12:49; 14:31). Besides, if Jesus was always motivated by compassion to minister he wouldn’t have left those who came to Him for healing the day after He healed many others (Luke 4:40-44); asked the disciples to pray first to ask God for more workers; before He assigned His disciples to meet the needs of the crowd while He left to preach in other towns (Mt 9:35-10:7; 11:1); when He only healed 1 person at the Pool of Bethesda where “a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed” (John 5); or passed by the lame beggar who hung out everyday at the Gate Beautiful where Jesus and others entered the Temple courts to pray and teach (Acts 3:1-2). More than compassion, Jesus’ priority was to know, do, and speak only what His Father directed Him to do. Likewise in order to emulate Jesus’ life we as disciples must make knowing and doing what the Father wants our highest aim in life. This is the master key to understanding biblical discipleship.]
So before you rush out and respond to the latest crisis, need, request, or appeal, stop and take a few moments to submit your thoughts and feelings to the Lord and ask Him to give you the counsel and wisdom He promised according to His Word. Ask Him to direct you whether or not you should respond, how, and when, etc. Ask Him and yourself: am I giving under compulsion, with a sense of obligation (I should, or I feel pressured, etc) Can I give cheerfully not because I’m supposed to (I feel good about it, sense of joy like you feel when you’re giving a present to someone you really care about and want to give a gift to.)
James 2:14-17 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
At the final judgement where Jesus will separate the righteous from the unrighteous on the basis of how we loved or failed to love Him by loving and caring for our brothers and sisters:
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:31-46).
2 Corinthians 9 shows us that giving generously (sowing/reaping) and the promise of increase in return is in the context of “service to the Lord’s people.” Providing for other believers is given priority by contrast to those outside the Body of Christ. The situation here is a church suffering from poverty The reasons for doing so are given in verses 12-15: It “supplies the needs for the Lord’s people,” “results in thanksgiving and praise to God,” “proves your obedience to your confession of the Gospel of Christ;” and “the hearts of those who receive will go out to you and you’ll benefit from their prayers in return.”
Included in this section of Scripture, the promise is associated with the willing generosity of one’s heart and results in God’s blessings and abundance in return.
2 Corinthians 9:6-8: Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 7 Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
Giving Results in Receiving
When we face a difficult financial situation we wisely look for ways to reduce our expenses and conserve our resources. One of the seemingly obvious ways to reduce spending is to withhold our tithes and offerings to the Lord. After all our income may have been significantly reduced or has ceased altogether. This is the time when our faith is tested in God’s provision. While it seems counterintuitive, giving to the Lord is the act of faith that releases the miracle of His provision. We all recognize that there are many abuses and a lot of misunderstanding that goes with the topic of giving and receiving or “sowing and reaping.” Nevertheless, the entirety of Scripture supports a correlation between the two. The key to understanding is not found in a formula or the motive that we give in order to receive. We give because we love God and honor Him with the first portion of our income as an act of obedience and faith that He will provide. We take Him at His Word and trust He is faithful to do what He has promised. To give at a time of lack is a great expression of faith. It is the act of faith that He is good, faithful, and will indeed provide.
A great example is given in 2 Corinthians 8:1-15 where the churches in Macedonia gave out of their extreme poverty because they gave themselves first of all to the Lord. The Apostle Paul then challenges (not commands) the Corinthian church to follow their example in order to test the sincerity of their love.
Like the poor widow woman who gave out of her poverty and unlike those who gave out their abundance I give to you my tithes and offerings as an act of faith trusting you will provide. I ask you to show me what and where you would like me to give at this time.
Have Faith in God’s Faithfulness to Provide
Here the act of giving is associated with the act of faith required to receive the promise of fulfillment.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of what we hope for (that God is faithful to keep and fulfill His promises i.e. to provide) and the certainty of what we do not (yet) see.
Hebrews 11:17: By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son,18 even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.”
The faith we exercise is based on faith in who God is as the One who is faithful to provide. The foundation for faith is found in Habakkuk 2:4 where our faith depends on God who is faithful in all things. Literally it’s: “Faith in His faithfulness” where we recall, rehearse, remember, and re-tell the things God has done throughout Scripture. In other words when we bring them to remembrance in prayer and through our declarations of faith and His promises—when we recall and proclaim God’s faithfulness to provide in our lives. It’s because He has been faithful He can be relied upon again and again to provide in our time of need.
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