- Preparation involves Strengthening (Psalms 27:14, 31:24, 71:16; Ps. 16:11; Is. 12:2-3)
Psalms 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
Nehemiah 8:10 says the joy of the Lord is our strength. The Bible also says, “In His Presence is fullness of joy.” God himself gives joy. Joy comes from our relationship with Christ and our closeness with him. Our salvation is a well of joy we can continually draw from. When nothing else goes right, we can rejoice because our name is written in heaven (Luke 10:20). If your name isn’t written in heaven, it can be. The gospel is how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures in I Cor. 15:3. Jesus loves you and desires to save you. Find out more HERE.
- Preparation also involves Stepping Out On Faith (Heb. 11:6; Mk. 10:52; Lk. 8:48, 17:14, 19).
Mark 10:52 And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.
Luke 8:48 And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.
Luke 17:19 And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
This next verse speaks of the ten lepers whom Jesus healed:
Luke 17:14 And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
The ten lepers in the Bible were healed “as they went.” This is not talking about getting ahead of God, but when we pray, believing, we should prepare our life for the answer. Ask it, and act like it. If you’re praying for rain, carry an umbrella.
- If praying for or saving up for new musical instrument, learn how to play as much as you can before.
- If you're praying for a publishing contract for that awesome book you've written, keep writing new material and meeting potential readers and studying the craft!
- If praying for a husband, consider all the things you’d be doing to care for and respect a husband and give God, your dad and your brothers the same time and courtesy. Start scheduling “dates” with God. See more HERE.
- If praying for a family of your own, learn to cook, plan meals, and baby-sit. If you live at home with parents and siblings, volunteer to help your mother out and take charge of keeping house for a week.
- If praying for a job, start keeping that schedule, filling that time with volunteer work at your house, church, or a local nursing home until you get an interview.
A great example of this stepping out in faith is my friend Terri who prayed for a child for eight years. I’ve been following her on Pinterest for a while, and she would always be pinning little baby things to a board called “Faith Is the Substance…” from the verse Hebrews 11:6, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
I would see her pinning those baby things, knowing for years they had hoped for a baby, yet it hadn’t come to pass. And oh me of little faith, *face palm* I’m ashamed I thought it now, but I kind of felt sad for her, you know. She was still hoping for a baby after all this time.
Well, let me eat a piece of humble pie here, and confess that in February of this year I got to see Terri and meet her gorgeous baby girl, Gracie, for the first time.
My inner dialogue as I browse Gracie’s precious baby photos on Facebook:
Me: I’m sorry, God.
God: Isn’t she beautiful?
Me: Yes, she’s beautiful.
God: I knew all along when she would be born, and she came in my perfect timing.
Me: Yes sir, God.
God: You didn’t think I could do it did you?
Me: *biting my lip to keep from grinning* I’m sorry God.
Another cool example of preparing while praying, is the couple Eric and Leslie Ludy. They wrote a book together about their courtship—a sweet love story and an EXCELLENT book on relationships—When Dreams Come True. Reads like a novel, but it’s a true story. Love that book.
In the book, Leslie talks about how before they married, when they were just pals, she was jealous of Eric’s future wife, because even before he knew who she would be, he wrote poetry to his future wife. He wrote a song for her. In all his interactions with other ladies, he behaved as if he was already married. In his heart, he already belonged to the wife he’d asked God for, and he was protecting their relationship even though he didn’t know who she was. How romantic is that? Seriously.
We also should ask God for what we’re waiting on, then prepare for the answer. But use common sense. If you pray God will heal your broken leg, don’t go river dancing before it’s well. If you pray “even so come quickly, Lord Jesus,” don’t go jump off the roof so you can get a head start on the rapture. We have to use common sense. :P
Preparation involves Separation.
You may feel you’ve been “passed over,” while you watch your friends enjoy blessings you are still praying for. The waiting means God is preparing you for something wonderful. Stay faithful to Him. Don’t settle. While we are waiting, God is working. Working on us, on others, on our circumstances.
James 4:10 says, Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
James 1:4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.