Posts Tagged ‘Confidence


Who’s Laughing Now?


According To His Will

Do you believe that God hears your prayers and will answer them? Do you trust that your Heavenly Father is listening when you call out to Him? John writes:

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. – 1 John 5:14-15 (NIV)

The key to seeing God answer our prayers is to pray according to His will. Sometimes we wonder why God isn’t answering our prayers. He IS answering them. Sometimes the answer is, “No” or “Wait.” When we pray selfish prayers, the answer may be, “No.” When we pray according to our will, the answer is, “No” if our will is not aligned with the will of God. “No” does not mean that God does not love you. It means that you need to shift your priorities and your expectations. Pray that God will answer your prayers according to His will and know that the God who loves you and who will always do what is best will answer your prayers.

Eternal Life

In today’s verse from 1 John, John reveals one of the purposes to his writing this letter. He says:

I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. – 1 John 5:13 (NIV)

If someone were to ask you if you were going to Heaven, what would be your response? Could you confidently say, “Yes!” or would you cautiously say, “I hope so.”? My friends, because of God’s grace through faith in Jesus, the answer is a confident, “Yes!” John sums up his writings about God’s love and faithfulness with this encouraging thought. He wanted his audience, which now includes us, to KNOW that we have eternal life through Jesus. This confidence is not in our efforts to be good. It is a confidence in God’s goodness and grace. If you’re trusting in your efforts to save you or keep you saved, you’re trusting in the wrong thing. Trust in God and in His Son, Jesus. May you KNOW today that you are saved and going to spend eternity with Christ. Live in that joy today and let your light shine so that others will want to know Him, too.

Confidence Versus Arrogance

Faithfulness is one of the keys that unlocks confidence in Christ. Check out what the Apostle John wrote. He said:

And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming. – 1 John 2:28 (NIV)

There is a difference between confidence and arrogance. When we live our lives in faithful service to Jesus, we can have confidence in our status before Him when He returns. It’s not arrogance. Arrogance says, “Don’t you know who I am?” Arrogance believes that one deserves Heaven. Confidence says, “I know who He is.” Confidence believes that the grace of God is sufficient to bring us to our heavenly home. Arrogance pridefully thinks that it is all about us. Confidence humbly knows that it is all about Him. This confidence we have comes from walking faithfully with Jesus in love for and service to Him. Be faithful today and confidently trust in His grace to lead you home.

Avoiding Gossip

Gossip is very dangerous, according to Solomon. We need to be careful when it comes to what we say and to whom we say it. Check out what he says:

A gossip betrays a confidence;
    so avoid anyone who talks too much. – Proverbs 20:19 (NIV)

Earlier in Proverbs, Solomon wrote this about gossip:

The words of a gossip are like choice morsels;
    they go down to the inmost parts. – Proverbs 18:8 (NIV)

Not only should we be careful when it comes to the people to whom we speak, but we should be careful when it comes to what we listen to as well. A gossip will betray your confidence, so watch out when sharing too much or else you may be considered a gossip as well. Let’s face it, juicy gossip can be “fun” to hear. It can also tear a person down. So don’t spread gossip. After all, would you want someone gossiping about you?

The Key That Unlocks Prayer

1 John 5:13-15 (NIV)
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.
On a scale of one to ten, how confident are you when you pray?  Oftentimes we don’t feel overly confident when approaching the Lord.  We don’t trust Him enough.  We don’t believe that He really is good and loving.  We’ll come to Him with petitions and prayer requests and we believe that He can do anything.  We just doubt that He is willing.
John tells us that we can have confidence, through Jesus, that God the Father hears our prayers.  Not only does He hear them, but He answers them according to His will.  There are two things we need to know when it comes to answered prayer.
First, confidence is different than arrogance.  Confidence means that we trust God to do what is best and we know that He will do what is best.  Arrogance is to make demands of God as though He owes us something.  God doesn’t owe us a thing!
Second, we need to align our wills with the will of God in prayer.  We need to submit our will to the will of the Father.  Jesus gave us this pattern in the Garden of Gethsemane.  He prayed that the will of the Father would be done and not His own.  When we seek God’s will first, we’ll find that our prayers are answered.  The key to prayer is not to make demands of God, but to humbly surrender to His will.
PRAYER: Father, help me to seek Your will today.  Help me to have a better understanding of what You are doing in my life and in Your world.  I want to surrender to Your leading and Your will today.  Amen.

How Many Shoes Does God Have?

You’ve no doubt heard the expression, “I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop”.  It typically means that things are going well, but one is waiting for the inevitable hiccup, bump in the road or piano to drop on one’s head from a very tall building while walking down a busy street in Chicago.  We human beings can be quite pessimistic about our lives.  We’re too pessimistic for our own good.  What happened to hope and anticipation?  (For a good take on hope, click here).  What happened to optimism?  Is there any justifiable reason to have hope in our world today?  Why does there always have to be “another shoe”?  Why are we waiting for the other shoe to drop instead of waiting for the next blessing or revelation of God’s presence in our lives?

“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” — Hebrews 11:1 (NLT)

The Greek word translated as hope literally means a confident expectation.  The author of Hebrews makes a great connection between faith and hope.  The faith that one has in Jesus Christ is directly related to the hope of His return.  Our expectation of Christ’s return is rooted in our faith in what we cannot see.  Faith is hard, but I wonder if hope is harder.  I can see the evidence of God all around me.  I know that He is there and He created all of the beauty around me.  But when it comes to hope for a bright future, I keep wondering how many shoes God has and when the next one will drop.

The book of James says to rejoice in trials because they produce perseverance and endurance.  They strengthen our faith.  They make us more mature.  God knows what He is doing and I have to take comfort in that and believe that there is a plan for my life and hope for my future.  And some days, that’s all I can do.

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