When Your Prayers Don’t Seem to Get Answered

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

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Hello and Happy Day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, novelist and life coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is April 5, 2021, and this is Episode #9 of Series 2021. This episode is titled “When Your Prayers Don’t Seem to Get Answered”

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 The Bible is very logical and the Bible is very balanced. What we often fail to do, however, is to follow what the Bible says to its logical conclusions. We skim over verses as we read them. We make assumptions about the verses we read and fail to grasp what they truly mean.

One such verse is Mark 9: 24: “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.”

Let’s look at this passage in context in Mark 9:14-24.

Jesus had just come down from a high mountain with Peter, James, and John where they had seen Him transfigured before them and had heard the voice of the Father approving Jesus. We’ll start at verse 14:

“When they returned to the other disciples, they saw a large crowd surrounding them, and some teachers of religious law were arguing with them. When the crowd saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with awe, and they ran to greet him.

“What is all this arguing about?” Jesus asked.

One of the men in the crowd spoke up and said, “Teacher, I brought my son so you could heal him. He is possessed by an evil spirit that won’t let him talk. And whenever this spirit seizes him, it throws him violently to the ground. Then he foams at the mouth and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid. So I asked your disciples to cast out the evil spirit, but they couldn’t do it.”

Jesus said to them, “You faithless people! How long must I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.”

So they brought the boy. But when the evil spirit saw Jesus, it threw the child into a violent convulsion, and he fell to the ground, writhing and foaming at the mouth.

‘How long has this been happening?’ Jesus asked the boy’s father.

He replied, ‘Since he was a little boy. The spirit often throws him into the fire or into water, trying to kill him. Have mercy on us and help us, if you can.’

‘What do you mean, “If I can”?’ Jesus asked. ‘Anything is possible if a person believes.’

The father instantly cried out, ‘I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!'”

This passage focuses on the problem of unbelief. The father’s cry sets the theme of the passage: “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief!” The problem of unbelief has to do with the problem of seemingly unanswered prayer. It is a problem we have all faced as Christ-followers, and a problem to which we often offer pious platitudes as reasons for the problem. I don’t know about you, but I have been guilty of this and have had to repent.

Notice, I said “seemingly” unanswered prayer, because the truth is that God hears and answers every one of the prayers of His children. How do we know this? The Bible says so in Matthew 7: 7 KJV. Jesus is speaking here and says, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”

Jesus cannot lie. He says what He means and He means what He says. The Bible says this in Numbers 23: 19 NLT: “God is not a man, so He does not lie. He is not human, so He does not change His mind. Has He ever spoken and failed to act? Has He ever promised and not carried it through?”

So, if Jesus said we would receive when we ask, then we will receive when we ask. 

Now, I’m sure that some of you reading this blog post or listening to this podcast have prayers that seem unanswered. I do as well. So, what is really going on when our prayers seem to be unanswered?

Let’s look again at Matthew 7: 7 NLT: “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”

In this verse, Jesus is telling us that if we ask, we shall be given what we ask for; if we seek, we shall find what we are looking for; if we knock, the door will be opened to us.

So why then, since this verse is true, do we seem to have so many unanswered prayers?

Many Christians, when they don’t seem to get an answer to their prayers—and notice here that the word SEEM is the operative word—many Christians when they don’t seem to get an answer to their prayers have to find a reason for which they didn’t get an answer to their prayers.

So, what do we do? We concoct all kinds of reasons for not receiving answers to our prayers. We say things like, “Healing is not for today,” or “God doesn’t want to heal me,” or “I’m not healed because God is teaching me something,” or “I’ll never get out of debt,” or “God has forgotten about me,” or “God is angry with me”—and on and on and on.

But what about Romans 3: 4 NLT that says this: “Even if everyone else is a liar, God is true. As the Scriptures say about Him, ‘You will be proved right in what you say, and you will win your case in court.’”

So, we have to make a quality decision – a quality decision is one from which there is no retreat—we have to make a quality decision that what God says is true no matter what our circumstances look like, no matter what we are feeling, no matter anything contrary to God’s Word. God’s Word is true. PERIOD!

We must start from this truth if we are to receive from God. To start from any other place is to fall into error and to fail to receive the answer to our prayer.

Great men of the Bible understood this. When Job was going through his horrendous trials, he trusted God enough to be able to cry out, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” (Job 13: 15 NKJV).

The three Hebrew young men–Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego–demonstrated their absolute trust in God when they were thrown into the fiery furnace by King Nebuchadnezzar. Here’s what they said, as recorded in Daniel 3: 17-18 NLT: “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”                    

We have to be so secure in our trust of God that even if we do not see the fulfillment of the promise, we will still believe His Word is true. The prophets of old believed the promise that the Messiah would come even though they did not see this promise fulfilled during their lifetimes.

Now, these examples above do not mean that God doesn’t want to fulfill His promises in our lives. He does. But more than anything, He wants us to have a relationship with Him based on perfect trust in Him.

So, the foundational truth for experiencing the answers to our prayers is to establish in our heart that God’s Word is absolutely true and the final authority in our lives, and that our experiences are not. When our experiences differ from God’s Word, we must choose to believe God’s Word, not our experiences.

This is very difficult for us as humans, especially when our senses are screaming physical pain or the creditors are knocking at our door or our wayward child is falling deeper into sin or our marriage seems headed for divorce.

Why is it so difficult for us to trust in God and simply to take Him at His Word? Because we have been programmed—especially here in the West—to believe our five senses more than anything else and to make them the criteria for faith. In fact, the expression “Seeing is believing” perfectly describes this belief in the supremacy of the five senses.

Moreover, we have been taught—ever since the Renaissance and the Enlightenment—that human reason reigns and, indeed, in many cases, that there is nothing outside of or beyond human reason.

This philosophy of exalting the reason above all else evolved into our current exaltation of science as the god of the 21st century. Today science has become a god at whose altar our culture bows. If science says it, we believe it.

Yet, over the centuries, new scientific discoveries have altered previous ones. So, while true science—God’s science—has not changed, our understanding of science has changed and will continue to change. Our trust must not be in science, but in God Who created science.

The exaltation of reason is a phenomenon peculiar to the West. We do not find this same level of exalting the reason in the Middle Eastern and Eastern cultures where the people make room for the spiritual realm, even though that spiritual realm may be the demonic spiritual realm.

But in the West, until the latter part of the 20th century, we discounted the spiritual realm and relegated it to the domain of third world countries. To believe in a spiritual realm, here in America and in the West, was considered a sign of ignorance. Yet, look at us now. We believe in the spirit realm, but mostly the New Age spirit realm. Those very third world countries we criticized, we now emulate. In the last 60 years or so, the spiritual realm, meaning primarily the demonic realm, has come back into vogue.

Now, we know that God says what He means and means what He says. Yet, when we put the Word to the test through prayer, and we don’t see the results the Word promises, we begin to make excuses.

Instead of admitting that the problem is on our side, we find an excuse to shift the blame to God’s side. In other words, we refuse to admit that the reason we may not have received an answer to our prayer is that we failed to receive the answer to our prayer. We refuse to admit that we missed something in the receiving process. 

I once had a discussion about healing with a pastor. When I suggested that we pray for the sick in his church, he hesitated. When I asked him why his hesitation since God’s Word commands us to pray for the sick, he said that he didn’t want anyone in his church who did not get healed to feel condemned or to feel bad.

Frankly, his response stunned me. It was a prime example of the fear of man. Sadly, this pastor was more concerned about hurting the feelings of his congregation than about the truth of God’s Word that would set them free if he preached it.

So, what happens when we ask God for something in prayer?

What happens is that God answers us immediately. But He deposits the answer in our spirits. It then becomes our responsibility to bring that answer from our spirits into our bodies or into our checkbooks or into our relationships, or wherever we need that answer to do its job.

John 4: 24 tells us that God is a Spirit. He connects with us through our spirits. He always communicates with us through our spirits, not through our feelings. Now, we may experience certain feelings when God communicates with us, but those feelings are by-products of the communication. And the feelings do not always occur.

Once we receive God’s communication in our spirits—in other words, once we receive His answer to our prayer—then it is we who give physical substance to that answer through faith.

Hebrews 11: 1 NKJV says this: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.”

This verse tells us that faith puts flesh on the things we hope for, the things we do not yet see manifested in the physical realm. Faith also gives us a good testimony. In other words, when we use our faith to receive what God has placed in our spirit, our faith will give us cause to testify of God’s faithfulness toward us.

So, how do we give physical substance to God’s answer in our spirits? We do so by faith.

Our faith gives physical substance to God’s answer that resides in our spirits. Our faith takes the answer that is in our spirits and brings it into our bodies and into the physical world in which we live.

Perhaps this illustration of how radio waves work will help us to understand this process of bringing the spiritual into the physical by faith.

The human ear cannot hear radio signals unless those signals are first converted into frequencies that the human ear can pick up. When a radio station broadcasts, it uses a receiver to pick up the radio signals and then converts those signals into frequencies, or sound levels, that the human ear can detect. 

Just because we cannot hear the radio signals that a radio station is broadcasting or transmitting does not mean that those signals are not being transmitted. It simply means that we are not yet able to receive the signals until they are changed to lower frequencies that our human ears can hear.

For us to say that a radio station is not broadcasting signals just because we cannot hear those signals with our physical ears is not true. The signals are real and they are in the air, but they have not yet been converted into a form which our ears can hear. When, however, those signals are picked up by a receiver, the signals are then converted into sounds that the human ear can hear.

Now, let’s apply this analogy to God’s answers to our prayers. We could say that God’s answers to our prayers are like spiritual signals that He deposits in our spirits. Those spiritual signals are the answers to our prayers. They are the answers God has deposited into our spirits as the result of our having prayed. But, we need a receiver to convert those answers into something physical that we can experience, like healing or deliverance or financial blessing. That receiver is faith. 

For us to say that God has not answered our prayers just because we have not experienced those answers—in other words, for us to say that God has not placed His spiritual signals or answers to our prayers in our spirits—is not true. He has. He placed them there the instant we asked Him to in prayer.

But just as radio signals need to be picked up by a receiver and converted into sound before we can hear them, so do God’s answers to our prayers have to be picked up by our faith from our spirits and converted into physical answers.

In other words, the spiritual power residing in our spirits has to be converted into the physical power that brings our healing or our financial deliverance or our deliverance in any area of our lives.

This is how our prayers are answered. God gives us the answers to our prayers when we ask Him in faith, and He places those answers in our spirits because He is a Spirit and communicates with us Spirit-to-spirit.

Then we convert those answers in our spirit into a physical reality through faith. We set our faith in motion by declaring the Word, confessing the Word, standing on the Word—until we see the spiritual signal or answer to our prayer manifested as a physical reality.

So, God’s answers move from our spirits into our flesh, from the spiritual realm into our physical world, when we draw them out of the spirit realm by faith and bring them into the physical realm by declaring His Word.

You might ask, Why do I have to do this? Can’t God just drop His answers into my physical world? Well, here are two reasons God has chosen not to drop His answers directly into our physical world:

First, Scripture says that without faith, it is impossible to please God. (Hebrews 11: 6). Second, God needs our cooperation because He has made us co-heirs with Christ (Romans 8: 17).

In Ephesians 3: 20 NLT, we read this: “Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.” The power of God is in us. We must cooperate with God. If we don’t understand this, we will not receive or draw into the physical realm what God has already placed in our spirits.

We read this in Mark 11: 24 GNT: “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.”

Notice that this verse instructs us to believe when we pray. When do we believe? The instant we pray. Not when we see the answer to our prayer. 

We receive the answer to our prayer in our spirit by faith, and we receive the answer immediately in our spirit. But it stays there in our spirit until we draw it out into the physical realm, again by faith.

The world says “seeing is believing.” The Bible says, “Believing is seeing. Believing is seeing!” We need to believe we have received the answer to our prayer before we see the answer to our prayer.

Faith is the currency, the medium of exchange, between the spirit realm and the physical realm.

Now, sometimes it takes a while to draw out what is in the spirit realm and bring it into the physical realm. Why? There could be a number of obstacles that are standing in the way. Those obstacles could be demonic. They could be related to unbelief or idols in our heart, or demonic strongholds, or a host of other things.

Often, then, the answer to our prayer comes to pass in the physical realm some time after we pray. It could be a few days, a few months, a few years between the moment we pray and the moment we see the physical manifestation of the answer to our prayer.

During that interval between the moment we pray and the moment we see the manifestation of the answer in the physical realm—however long that interval is—we must not waiver in our belief that God has already answered our prayer. This interval is the time of the testing of our faith. It is the time during which we develop our faith muscles.

How long the interval lasts depends upon various factors—such as the words we speak and the actions we take–but we control many of those factors.     

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“Faith is the currency, the medium of exchange, between the spirit realm and the physical realm.” ~ Dr. MaryAnn Diorio
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Remember this: God answers our prayers immediately. Our job is to believe we receive WHEN we pray. The praying, believing and receiving are simultaneous. The manifestation usually comes later, although it can come immediately. But it usually comes later to allow for the testing of our faith, the strengthening of our faith muscles.

So, when we pray, we believe when we pray. We don’t believe when we see the answer manifested. No, we believe when we pray, and we receive the answer immediately in our spirit, then it manifests later in the physical.

We read in the Book of Daniel, chapters 9 and 10, of two instances when Daniel prayed. The first time, his prayer was answered in about three minutes. The second time, it took three weeks! Why? Because demonic spirits were trying to hinder the answer from getting to him. God answered both of Daniel’s prayers instantly. The Lord was not the variable. A demonic force was.

How do we know? Because God is not unpredictable. He is not the variable in the prayer equation. We read this about God in Psalm 102: 27 NLT: “But you are always the same.” Again in Malachi 3: 6, God says,I am the LORD, and I do not change.”

The Bible tells us in 1 John 5: 14-15 ESV that if we pray a prayer according to God’s Word and God’s will, He answers it immediately. Let’s read that verse: “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.” 

You see, God cannot contradict Himself. If He said He wills something, then He cannot turn a deaf ear to our prayer re: the thing that He wills. Once we grasp this truth, we can release our faith to bring that answer into complete manifestation in the physical realm.

Prayer is communication with God the Father through Jesus Christ. If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord, you have not yet established that communication, Hence, God does not recognize you as His child and will not answer most of your prayers. The only prayer He will answer is your prayer to become His child. Why not pray that prayer with me now?

Lord Jesus, I want to know You. I want a personal relationship with You. I want to be able to communicate with You and have You communicate with me. So, I ask You now to come into my life. I receive You as my personal Savior and the Lord of my life. Forgive me of my sin. Make me what You created me to be. In Your Name, I pray. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer sincerely, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a free e-booklet that will help you get started in your walk with Christ. I also encourage you to get yourself a Bible and read it every single day. The Bible is God’s love letter to you, His manual for your life. In the Bible, God reveals Who He is, and He teaches you how to live.

Finally, ask the Lord to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can learn about Him and have fellowship and encouragement with other Christ-Followers. It is critically important in these last days to fellowship with other believers who are mature in Christ and can guide you as you grow in Him.

If you are not yet a subscriber to the Winning with the Word blog and podcast, I urge you to click on the link below to subscribe now so you will not miss a single weekly episode:

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Featured Book of the Week:  THE IRON SAINT by MaryAnn Diorio, PhD

The Church in America is on the verge of a tremendous spiritual awakening, an awakening that will first be fueled by persecution unlike anything we have ever seen before in this land. Indeed, a prophetic word given in my home church during the month of November gave this warning to the Church: “Prepare for the fire of persecution!”

But the Church is not ready for this persecution. For the most part, the Church in America has been weak and lukewarm. Flabby and lazy. Consumed with the world and not with the things of God. As a result, the Church has been deceived and has subverted the divine order of things.

In THE IRON SAINT, Dr. MaryAnn Diorio seeks to help equip the saints for the work of true, integritous, and effective ministry. As a teacher in the Body of Christ, it is her burning desire to help correct this devastating error.

In THE IRON SAINT, Dr. Diorio has outlined a plan of action for strengthening the Church through uncompromising obedience to the Word of God. This plan of action is based on her own 50 years of walking with the Lord and being led by His Holy Spirit.

If you are a born-again believer and member of the Body of Christ, make this book a top reading priority.

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When Your Prayers Hit a Brass Ceiling

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Hello and Happy Day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, your Virtual Life Coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is Monday, February 24, 2020. Today’s Podcast is Episode #8 in Series 2020 and is titled “When Your Prayers Hit a Brass Ceiling.”

Recently, I’ve had a couple of people tell me that they feel as though God does not hear them when they pray. Perhaps this describes you as well. If so, let me encourage you with some tips on how to break through that brass ceiling when you pray.

Here are a few things that may be keeping you from getting a response from God:

1. Know that God is listening, but you may not have connected to His wave length. Have you ever tried to tune in to a radio station while driving your car? Sometimes you have to keep turning the knob until the connection is made. The station is always transmitting, but you are not always connecting because you haven’t hit the station’s wave length.

2. Faith is the spiritual device that connects you to God (Hebrews 11: 1). Another way of putting it is to say that faith is the currency of Heaven, the medium of exchange. God has a storehouse of blessings for you in Heaven. To download them from Heaven to Earth, we need faith. Faith is the downloading device. The Bible says that without faith, it’s impossible to please God (Hebrews 11: 6).

3. Our prayers must align with God’s Word (1 John 5: 14-15). For instance, a single woman who prays that a certain married man will become her husband is not praying according to God’s Word. Instead, she is being deceived by Satan. God will never answer such a prayer–nor any prayer that violates His Word. 

4. We must ask with the right motives (James 4: 2-3). Right motives are not selfish motives. Right motives characterize a heart willing to accept God’s will, no matter what it is.

5. Gratitude must lace our prayers. God responds to a grateful heart because a grateful heart is a humble heart. Scripture tells us in James 4: 6 that “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” 

6. Finally, we must wait for God’s timing. “There is a time for everything,” Solomon writes in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Although it may seem as though God has not heard our prayer, he sometimes delays His response for reasons of His own. Perhaps we need to learn to be patient. Perhaps He has to orchestrate other situations connected with our own situation. Whatever the case may, God is always on time in answering our prayers.

All of the above tips are meaningless unless one has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ–in other words, unless one has been born again. Scripture says this: “God does not listen to sinners, but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does his will, God listens to him.” The only prayer God hears from those who do not know Him is the prayer for salvation. In John 6: 37b, God says, “Whoever comes to me I will never drive out.” 

If you have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, I urge you to do so now.

Pray this simple prayer with me:

Father God, I want and need a personal relationship with You. I recognize that I cannot save myself. For this reason, You sent Jesus to save me and to restore me to fellowship with You. I invite You into my life to be my Savior and my Lord. I choose to follow You, Jesus. I turn my back on the world and its wicked ways, and I choose to follow You and Your holy ways. Thank You for accepting me as Your own. In Your Name I pray, believe, and receive. Amen.

If you prayed this simple prayer, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Jesus Christ. I also encourage you to get yourself a Bible and read it every day, starting in the Gospel of John, which is in the second half of the Bible. Finally, ask the Lord to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can learn about Him and find fellowship and encouragement with other Christ-Followers.

For those of you who may not know, I write fiction about some of the issues I deal with in this blog and podcast. I invite you to visit my website at https://www.maryanndiorio.com/book-table. There you will find a complete list of the novels, novellas, and short stories I have written about characters with problems like yours. This month, in honor of Black History month, I am offering a special discount on my latest novel titled In Black and White. It is the story of the love between a white woman and a black man and the power of God to restore all that is broken in our lives. To order your copy, click on one of the links below:

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And to all of you wonderful people out there, thank you so much for listening. This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, your virtual life coach, reminding you that God loves you just as you are and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word.

Listen to the podcast here:

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Now it’s your turn: Do you get a brass ceiling when you pray? If so, which of the tips do you think will best help you to get through to God? Please leave your comment in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

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Copyright 2000-2020 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

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“IS FEAR QUENCHING YOUR FAITH?”

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here 

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FEAR and FAITH. The two don’t mix. Either fear will prevail and drive out faith, or faith will prevail and drive out fear. Which scenario transpires is entirely up to you.

What is fear and why should you expel it?

Fear is faith in the devil. It is trusting his lies more than trusting God’s truth. Fear is evil and dangerous and will get us nothing from the Kingdom of God. 

Fear attracts to itself what it fears. Take a look at what Job said: “What I always feared has happened to me. What I dreaded has come true” (Job 3: 25 NLT). 

What are you fearing today? Whatever it is, if it is anything other than the healthful fear or reverence of God, it is a lie from the enemy. By believing that lie, you will bring it to pass. So stop believing Satan’s lie and start believing God’s truth.

What is faith and why do you need it?
Believing God’s truth is called faith. 
The Bible tells us in Hebrews 11: 1 that faith is “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” What does this mean? 

The New Century translation (NCV) says it like this: “Faith means being sure of the things we hope for and knowing that something is real even if we do not see it.”  

The Kingdom of God is real even if we do not see it. The blessings God has provided for us in His Kingdom are real even if we do not see them. Faith is what brings the blessings of God from the spiritual realm into the earthly realm where we live.

So, in summary:

___Fear attracts to itself what it fears.

___Faith attracts to itself what it believes. 

Faith is what brings the blessings of God from the spiritual realm
into the earthly realm where we live.

Faith is the currency of God’s Kingdom. In other words, it is the medium of exchange whereby we bring what we need from God’s Kingdom into our everyday lives. Without faith, not only can we not receive what Jesus died to give us, but, worst of all, we cannot please God (Hebrews 11: 6).

Do you need something from God today? Then believe His Word and receive what He has already provided for you through the Cross. How do you receive? By believing! 

You might be thinking, Great! I’m having a hard time believing. So, what am I to do? 

May I suggest that you don’t have a faith problem; you have a trust problem. For whatever reason, you don’t trust God’s character because you don’t know Him well enough. 

So, what can you do?

Simple. Get to know God better through His Word. The more you get to know Him–the more you will learn that He is perfectly trustworthy. The more you discover that He is perfectly trustworthy, the more your faith in what He has spoken will grow.

Scripture says this in Romans 10: 17 NLT:  “So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.” The more you hear the Good News about Christ–aka God’s Word–the more your faith in it will increase. So, listen to God’s Word continually. Read it. Study it. Memorize it. Speak it aloud into the challenging situations you face. God’s Word will NEVER fail.

One great way to hear God’s Word is to fall asleep listening to it. This is what I do. I fall asleep at night listening to CDs of the Bible. As I sleep, the Word gets into my spirit and builds my faith.

Remember this: Faith is the result of knowing God and knowing that He is perfectly trustworthy. The more you get to know God, the more you will trust Him. 

My Prayer for You Today: Lord Jesus, as we build our faith by listening to Your Word, we ask that You would reveal Yourself to us in deeper ways so that we can drive out fear in Your Name and trust You more and more. Amen.

Now, it’s YOUR turn: Do you struggle with fear? If so, how have you dealt with it?

TWEETABLE:  “IS FEAR QUENCHING YOUR FAITH? by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

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THE ITALIAN CHRONICLES TRILOGY

 

 

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“The Soul Roots of Sickness – Part Four”

“The Soul Roots of Sickness – Part One”

“The Soul Roots of Sickness – Part Two”

“The Soul Roots of Sickness – Part Three”

“Sex and Soul Ties” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

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Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

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Believing Is NOT Receiving

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or would prefer to subscribe via a different venue, please check the sidebar to the right for subscription options. Thank you!

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Have you been praying for something for a long time but have not received an answer to your prayers? Perhaps you’re even beginning to doubt that you will ever get an answer.  For instance, you may have been praying for healing, but you are still sick. Or you may have been praying for a job, but you are still unemployed. Or you may have been praying for the return of a wayward son or daughter, but your child is still estranged from you.

You may have begun to wonder if God even cares.

Well, before you venture farther into the dangerous Land of Unbelief, let me encourage you.  First of all, God still cares about you. Very deeply, in fact. So deeply that He brought you to this blog post.

 

Second, God cannot lie. So, whatever He has promised you in His Word is true and is yours as a Christ-Follower. Healing is yours (Matthew 7: 27). Financial sufficiency is yours (Philippians 4: 19). Good relationships are yours (Malachi 4: 6).

So, what is the problem?

The problem is not on God’s end. It’s on ours. You see, most of us have confused belief with faith, and the two simply are not the same.  

So, what is the difference between belief and faith?

Belief is a function of the mind. Faith is a function of the heart (or spirit). We can believe God with our mind but not have faith in our heart to receive what we are believing for.  

Perhaps this simple illustration will help clarify the difference between belief and faith. I can look at a chair and believe it is a chair. I can believe that it will hold me up if I sit in it.  But it is only at the point in which I actually sit in the chair that I am expressing faith in the chair. In other words, it is only when I take action and sit in the chair that I am trusting the chair to hold me up. When I sit down, I am expressing faith. If I only believe the chair is a chair but I do not sit down in it, I am expressing only belief in the chair, not faith in the chair.  Acknowledging that the chair is a chair is an act of mental assent–an act of my mind.  Actually sitting in the chair is an act of my heart. It is placing my total trust in the chair’s ability to hold me up safely. 

Now, in order to receive God’s promises, I must not only believe that those promises are mine, but I also must receive them into my life. I must surrender to those promises, trusting totally in their ability to produce what they say they will. In other words, I must “sit in the promises,” trusting that they will hold me up safely.

So, how does this distinction apply to healing, for instance? Well, I can believe that I was healed by the stripes of Jesus (1 Peter 2:24), but if I don’t “sit” in that promise–i.e., if I don’t rest in that promise–I will not see it manifested in my body.  If I don’t “sit in the chair of healing,” then I miss the opportunity of allowing the “chair of healing” to hold me up with healing.

So, belief is mentally agreeing with what God said but not acting on it. Faith, on the other hand, is not only agreeing with what God said, but also acting on it. Faith is leaning our entire being on what God said and trusting Him to bring it to pass in our lives.

Faith starts with belief. I first have to believe that what God says is true. But then, I have to build on that belief and act as though what God said is true. This “action” part is called faith.

Faith is total reliance on God to perform what He said He would. It is staking my life on His Word. It is living in complete trust that what He has spoken is true. So, faith is not only believing what God said; faith is surrendering my life to what God said and trusting Him to carry me.

Faith is “sitting in the chair”–resting in it. Faith is RESTING in God’s promise. 

The Bible says that even the devils believe in one God (James 2: 19). But their belief is not enough to save them. Salvation and all that comes with it (healing, provision, peace, etc.) comes not only by believing in God but also by surrendering our lives to Him. The devils have done the opposite and have been damned.

Believing with the mind will get us nothing from God. Believing with the heart will get us everything we need from God.

Now, it’s YOUR turn: Do you simply believe God’s promises or do you have faith in them? If you only believe but do not have faith, ask God to give you His faith.

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, you may wish to subscribe at http://www.networkedblogs.com/blog/maryanndiorioblog  or through the feed of your choice.

Please leave a comment in the box below.

TWEETABLE: “Believing Is NOT Receiving” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

NEW YOU-TUBE SERIES:  Check out my new You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  


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The Italian Chronicles Trilogy is now available in its entirety. Will Maria Landro Tonetta allow God to turn the horrific sorrows of her life into great joy? Read this page-turning series to find out! Makes a great gift for any occasion!

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 1” 

“15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 2”

#15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

Matters of the Heart is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or if you prefer to subscribe via another venue, you may do so by using any one of the other subscription options listed under the Networked Blog section in the sidebar on my website: www.maryanndiorio.com/blog. Thank you!

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

 

 

 

FAITH: THE CURRENCY OF HEAVEN

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or would prefer to subscribe via a different venue, please check the sidebar to the right for subscription options. Thank you!

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Currency is defined as a medium of exchange for goods and services. In some places throughout history, people paid for goods and services with their own goods and services. This was called “bartering.” Mostly, however, currency in the form of coins or paper money has been used throughout history as payment for goods and services.
 
As a medium of exchange, currency means that in exchange for something I want (a product), I give you something you want (money). Significantly, this principle of exchange applies to the Kingdom of God as well. The currency of the Kingdom of God is called “faith.” In order to receive from God, we need to use the currency of faith.
 

 

Lest there be any misunderstanding, however, let me make clear upfront that we cannot “purchase” anything from God. All that He gives us is a free gift that flows from His heart of love and mercy. Indeed, He Himself as Christ purchased every blessing for us by sacrificing His very life for us. Christ did all the “purchasing” that was necessary for us to experience salvation and all the blessings that come with it.
 
At the same time, experiencing those blessings requires faith.

Here is how it works: I go to God in need of a particular blessing, be it financial, health-related, job-related, or whatever. I see in His Word that God has provided that blessing for me.

God then says to me, “Do You believe what I say in My Word about the blessing you need? Do you believe 1 Peter 2: 24 where I tell you that you were healed by the stripes of Jesus? Do you believe Philippians 4: 19 where I tell you that I will supply all of Your need? Do you believe James 1: 5 where I promise you that I will give you all the wisdom you need to make wise decisions.”

God then tosses the ball to my court. If I believe what God says in His Word, I will have what God says in His Word. If I don’t believe what God says in His Word, I won’t have what God says in His Word. It’s as simple as that.

 
All that God requires of us is that we believe Him! Nothing more, nothing less. Amazing, no?
 
Actually, what is amazing is that we don’t believe Him!  But why don’t we believe Him? Because we don’t know Him. We don’t understand His character. We don’t comprehend His love. That, in my opinion, is the real reason we do not believe God. 
 
Ask yourself this question: How would you feel if your spouse, your children, or your boss did not trust you? Not very good, right? Well, God is grieved when we do not trust Him.  Faith is simply trusting that God says what He means and means what He says and that He will do what He says He will do.
 
Faith is the key to receiving from God. Without faith, it is impossible to please Him (Hebrews 11: 6). 
 
But what if you don’t have faith? Or not enough faith?
 
Actually, God has given each person “the measure of faith” (Romans 12: 3).  The Bible tells us He shows no partiality (Acts 10: 34). Just as all of us have been given the same number of muscles, so have all of us been given the same amount of faith. But just as muscles grow stronger only through exercise, so does faith grow stronger only through exercise. This is the reason for the many trials we face.  Trials exercise our faith and make it stronger.
 
Scripture also teaches that “faith comes by hearing” (Romans 10: 17). Whatever we hear often enough and long enough, we will end up believing. For this reason, it is critically important that we continually hear truth. And truth is found in the Word of God!
 
Decide today that you will be a person of faith–not because of what you will get out of it, but because of the joy you will give to your Heavenly Father simply by believing what He says.
 
Now, it’s YOUR turn:  Do you struggle to trust God? If so, what can you do about it? Please leave a comment in the box below.

TWEETABLE: “FAITH: THE CURRENCY OF HEAVEN” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

NEW YOU-TUBE SERIES:  Check out my new You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  


God designed you for greatness in Him. Discover the authority and power you have as a Christ-Follower! Get your copy of YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!

BUY NOW!

Post Footer Content

____________________________________________

JOIN MY TEAM

____________________________________________

 

 
  
 ____________________________________________________________________

The Italian Chronicles Trilogy is now available in its entirety. Will Maria Landro Tonetta allow God to turn the horrific sorrows of her life into great joy? Read this page-turning series to find out! Makes a great gift for any occasion!

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

_____________________________________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

Horoscopes? Ouija Boards? Séances? Are They Really Harmless?

Sex and Soul Ties

How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

Matters of the Heart is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or if you prefer to subscribe via another venue, you may do so by using any one of the other subscription options listed under the Networked Blog section in the sidebar on my website: www.maryanndiorio.com/blog. Thank you!

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you! 

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies.