You’ve heard of the preachers that preach a “name it and claim it” gospel. It is something I’ve always been weary of for a couple of reasons. One reason is that it comes across as though God is supposed to do what we want just because we tell him to. And the more we believe he will give us what we want, the more he will be inclined to do so. That seems rather presumptuous to me. As though we are giving orders to the Almighty Creator. The other reason this has always made me uncomfortable is because it implies that if you don’t receive what you prayed for it is because you don’t have enough faith. Once again – this gives entirely too much power to us for the outcome of situations and it seems as though we have the ability to override God’s plans.
On the other hand, I do believe that it is important for us to claim the promises of God when we pray. But I believe this has more to do with reminding us what God has already promised to his children and enabling God to grow our faith as we see his promises unfold in our lives. God has so many amazing gifts for us. And it is important that we really believe that he desires to give them to us so we can be ready and willing to accept them. Have you ever been offered a gift from someone for no reason that you felt uncomfortable receiving. They just wanted to bless you and yet you didn’t want to reach out and take it because you didn’t do anything to deserve it. You can picture the silly exchange. They are smiling as they try to hand you a special gift and you awkwardly yet politely insist “No, I can’t.” I wonder how many times we do that to God.
It is true that the ultimate answer to the deepest desires of our hearts will be realized when we enter the presence of God in his eternal kingdom. But that does not mean that we can’t begin receiving while we are still on earth. Even if we were to receive just a tiny portion of our ultimate inheritance, the blessings would be lavish beyond our imagination. No matter what, our life will look better tomorrow than it did yesterday if we are living as a child of God!
Read God’s Word. Know God’s promises. Accept God’s gifts.