“When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him. And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.”
How would a leper be bold and courageous enough to go to Christ and ask his petition? The Bible recorded that, at this time, great multitudes followed Christ. And here we have a leper among others who want a miracle in his life. We know that the disease of leprosy is contagious and nobody want to come close or touch a leper. So, first of all, the crowd that followed Jesus could have intimidated and stopped him from expressing his need to Christ. Secondly, his condition also could have discouraged him, but, he looked at the opportunity to get his healing that day and decided to ask. He wasn’t really sure if Christ would want to heal him at that busy, rush hour, per se, but he knew He was a good man, and he asked in faith, “Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean”
His faith never disappointed him as Christ answered, putting forth his hand and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed”. – Matthew 8:2-3
One thing that Christ will not reject is our faith. He can’t let you down when your eyes are on Him. When he sees you’re depending on him, his attention will turn to you. Apart from the story of this man, there are many other instances in the Scripture where people received what they wanted because of their faith. The formula is, “be it unto you according to your faith”. That’s what Christ always told those seekers, whether by word or by action.
Today, God has made it even more easier for us to ask what we need without the thoughts and frights of what others will say or do. We can quietly make our petitions known to him in our closets, in our offices, or even while walking on the road. This was possible by Christ’s suffering and death on the cross which gave us access to God without having to physically see him or wait until he passes our street
But the question is, though we have a better privilege today than the people of old had, are we receiving more than the people of old received? That is, does our faith get God’s attention like theirs did?
Actions of Faith
Bringing it to our time. Perhaps you’ve been praying for a job, and you’ve been praying hard to God for job opportunity, but it’s not forth coming. It’s not that God don’t want to give you a job, maybe it’s because he hasn’t seen your faith. Are you really ready for that job? Do you have the clothes and shoes that befits the kind of job you are asking God for? God want you to first prepare for that job before he brings it your way. Or maybe you are thinking of starting up a small business center but you’re wondering if people will patronize the business, nonetheless, you are praying really hard for the success of it. God hasn’t seen your faith yet. If you have faith, you’ll start carrying out your feasibility study and print your fliers, pasting them everywhere as if that printer or photocopier in the house is ready to start work NOW
Praying or asking God alone for a need without taking steps of faith means that we’re not actually ready to receive what we are asking for. It also show lack of trust in God.
“What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works (actions of faith)? can faith save him?  Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” – James 2:14,17
Readiness to receive from God
God don’t just want to bless you, he want you to be ready for his blessing. I’ve once thought I was fully ready to receive what I was asking God for when I was looking up to Him for finance to purchase a domain name and a host provider to host this site – moment with God. To me, am done with design and development of the website, and if at all there’s anything to fix, it’s definitely something very little. After praying hard to God for provision, he graciously provided all I wanted for moment with God to go online, only for it to dawn on me that there’s still enough work to do on the site. Why? I was looking at my finished work with a local (offline server) eyes not with a global eyes. So, not that God didn’t want to provide finance for moment with God to go online, but he was waiting for me to finish the work, while I was waiting on him to just provide.
There must be adequate preparation, whether for spiritual blessing, marital, material or otherwise to receive from God. True, his promises to bless us is in him, Yea, and in him, Amen. Yet, we must play our part to show we are ready to receive. Lastly, God sees beyond how we see and we should always trust him with our petitions knowing that “if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us” – 1 John 5:14
He cannot turn down our actions of faith when we pray according to his will and purpose for us. Even when it seem to delay, we must be patient, knowing that he is working things out together for our good. If it’s according to His will, He will do it