Jesus shared some pretty astounding facts about prayer. One of these was that we must believe we receive at the time we pray. We all want to be effective in our prayer life, right? Jesus stated:
“Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” Mark 11:24
This is a pretty amazing promise that Jesus gave us. The phrase “what things you desire” could also be translated “what you ask for or crave or require”. This includes both needs and desires. So Jesus was giving us direction that we can ask for desires as well as required needs. Simply, He wants to bless us in any area of life.
Here is the important part of this verse. Jesus said we were required to believe that we receive when we pray. I have begun to see that it is my responsibility before I pray to decide what I want or need as well as decide that when I pray that is the point I will believe I receive. Sometimes we shoot prayers in the wind hoping they will land somewhere and God will choose our prayer to answer. But that’s not the way Jesus instructed us to pray. We are to take responsibility for receiving our answer by trusting God’s love and faith in His Word.
Sometimes we pray too soon. What I mean is that when there is a need, we must first build our faith in our Heavenly Father’s love and ability to answer as well as our ability to believe. We sometimes become lazy in the area of when to believe. What this means to me is that I have to spiritually feed myself on the scriptural promises of the area in which I need prayer. Am I convinced God wants to heal me? What are the scriptures I am standing on? Am I certain God wants to provide my financial need? I need to grab hold of those scriptures BEFORE I pray.
We could also say Jesus was instructing us “you must believe you receive at the time you pray”. In other words before we pray we have to make the decision to receive at that moment. We don’t believe we receive when we see the answer. Belief is not required once you have it manifested. We must believe we receive at the time we make our prayer. Although God is the one who answers the prayer, we are the ones to be sure we believe at the time we pray that we receive. So at times we need to take more time getting in the place of receiving than we do in actual time praying.
“For this reason I tell you: When you pray and ask for something, believe that you have received it, and you will be given whatever you ask for.” Mark 11:24 GNB