The gospel according to the evening service.

It’s a Wednesday evening, and my first church service in the last two weeks. I’m sitting there with a friend listening to the message which had just about started after we arrived, and the subject matter was: The role of speech in prayer. I honestly wasn’t surprised that this was the focus of the evening service, as my understanding of God is that he will say certain things over and over again until we listen, hear, understand and execute the things that he would have us do.

A few weeks ago, the subject of my weekly video focused on blind Bartimaeus and how he received his sight through the ministry of Jesus. The one question that Jesus asked him was ‘What would you have me do unto you? ‘And blind Bartimaeus was not shy about stating his needs, and he thus received his sight. In the same vein, someone asked me a similar though less life-defining question a few weeks ago, and my first reaction was actually not commensurate with what my desire was because I felt I would have been asking for too much. During the course of that conversation, however, I adjusted my initial request to communicate more of what I actually desired. Without going into a lot of detail, I got  exactly what I had stated that I wanted, and actually a bit more :-)… Keeping in mind the fact that I had actually talked about this issue a little bit a few weeks ago, one would wonder why I am again writing on the topic. I believe it is because we as God’s children, speaking also for myself, have cheated, and are cheating ourselves out of what the Lord would have us receive from him because (quoting from one of the stories in my book ‘The Voice of One Woman’) we “shrink” ourselves and as a result, shrink our requests to match what we believe the “shrunken” version of ourselves deserves. Using the example of the event that I spoke of earlier, the Lord helped me to understand the questions I believe may have been running through blind Bartimaeus’s mind prior to the Lord asking the question that led to his receiving what he wanted from the Lord i.e. his sight.

The Holy Spirit ministered to me that, in Scripture, every significant, monumental, destiny defining miracle reported during Jesus’s earthly healing ministry had a question that produced a commensurate response associated with it. One that was generated, before, during, or after the event An example of one such a miracle that occurred after a question was asked is that of the blind Bartimaeus we are speaking of. One that was asked while a miracle was being perfected was the one that Jesus asked another blind man-‘ what do you see?’ after he had put clay upon his eyes; To which the man answered, ‘I see men walking as trees…’ After which the Lord went on to complete the miracle – restoration of perfect vision. Still another question that was asked after the miracle occurred – the woman with the issue of blood healed after she touched the hem of Jesus’s garment was Jesus asking: ‘Who touched me?’. Using these instances from scripture, the Lord then outlined the questions that I needed to ask myself, settling the answers before, during and even after any question is asked of me, so that I may receive what exactly it is that I want.

The first question he told me that I need to resolve is this:

Do I actually know exactly what I want? With two fundamental provisos – Is it God’s will for me to have it? And does it agree with His Word?

The second question:

Do I believe that I am deserving of what I’m asking for?

The third question that I must resolve the answer to:

Am I assured of the fact that the person who will be asking the succedent question of me is willing, ready and able to bring to pass the desires of my heart?

The Spirit of God said that if I’m able to answer all of these questions, and settle my answers to them prior to my being asked any pivotal destiny-defining question as outlined above, or even any question at all that involves my being on the receiving end of a blessing, I will have the desires of my heart.

So in dealing with the first question of whether I actually know what I want, I soul searched, and discovered much to my amazement that beyond typical generalization, in many instances, I do not actually know, or fully understand what I want, or why I want it! So how do I expect to receive an answer to a question that I do not know the answer to?… Selah.

So needs must that I go into my closet i.e. my mind; to pray, search out, and meditate on God’s Word, to discover what I actually want i.e what is entirely right and fitting for me.

Going on to question number two: Do I believe that I am deserving of the things I am asking for? And do I think that it is high enough on the scale of importance in the sight of the Lord? Again to my amazement, I discovered that I have not bothered to make certain requests of the Lord, because I did not believe I was deserving!!! Did not believe I was deserving of a certain type of house, car or job, did not believe that the blemish I wanted removed from my body was high enough on the scale of importance, so I just decided that I would not bother the Lord with such a frivolous request (paying no mind to the fact that the Bible records that the Lord thought it noteworthy enough to record the account of the healing of a certain King, of body blemishes).

So again needs must that I realize that I in and of myself, may not be deserving of anything, but IN CHRIST, God’s desire is that I have life, and it more abundantly, knowing that nothing is ever too small or too lofty for me to bring to the Lord in prayer.

The third and perhaps the most important of the three questions that I must settle in my heart are this: Do I truly believe that God is willing and able to do what I am asking him to, and when I am asked the kind of question that I wrote of above, do I realize that it is not actually the physical person in front of me who is asking the question, but God himself? It is essential that I must know, understand, be assured and confident that God is not only willing, but he’s able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all we can ask or think, according to his power, which is at work in us.

So tracing my steps back to the situation I spoke of above, I realized that I, almost unwittingly, had been (albeit clumsily) able to settle the answers to all the outcome-defining questions I was asked by that person, because I was able to boldly state the desires of my heart, knowing that it was God’s will for me to have that thing, was not guilty or embarrassed about the magnitude of my request, and had assured myself of the fact that the person who was asking the question of me had the power to make whatever it was I asked him, happen.

And since then, I have become highly sensitized to the fact that I must be careful to put every inquiry with regards to what I want or need in my day-to-day living through the “3-5 question step”, before I give my answer, i.e. before I open my mouth to speak or answer any such request, I wait, listen to God in my heart until I am sure of exactly what I want, then boldly make the request, being fully persuaded  of the fact that it is God and not man who’s asking the question of me and that He’s doing so from the stance of One who is willing, able and supremely capable of fulfilling the desires of my heart: big or small, frivolous or weighty, significant or seemingly insignificant, to praise and glory of his name forever.

…And that my friends, brings us to the end of the evening service.
Peace and much love from “Me” called Mettabel, to you.

© OluPero Mettabel, August 31, 2012

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