How do you seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness?

In Matthew 6:33 Jesus tells us “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”  I wonder if I am seeking first the kingdom of God and what does that look like?   I found a variety of interpretations during my research that were interesting but not enlightening.  I would like to know what your thoughts are.

Context of This Verse

I began by looking at the context of this verse.  The context, history, and who the audience is helps us understand the meaning.  After Jesus is water baptized by John the Baptist, the Spirit of God leads Him into the wilderness to fast 40 days.  While in the wilderness, the devil tempted Him to sin, which He did not sin (see Hebrews 4:14-16).  After the 40 days, He begins His ministry.

Matthew 4:23 and 24, describe His audience, “And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel (good news) of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people.  24) So, his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, those having seizures, and paralytics, and he healed them.  Seeing the big crowds following Him, he went up on a mountainside and preached His first sermon.  The picture with this post is of the mountains around the Sea of Galilee, where Jesus was ministering.

The Apostle Matthew records Jesus’s first sermon in Chapters 5-7. Luke also records His first sermon.  I wonder if this is the message He received from His Father while He was in the wilderness. Jesus begins His sermon with how they can be blessed (made happy).  He explains how they are the salt and light of the earth as they do good works (Matt. 5:16), and He taught how He came to fulfill the Law (see Romans 8:3-4). Other topics He preached in chapter five were anger, lust, divorce, oaths, retaliation, and loving your enemies.  Chapter six continues with giving to the needy, how to pray, fasting, investing in heaven, not being anxious.  Chapter seven continues with judging others, asking to receive, the golden rule, the fruit of false prophets, who will enter heaven, and obeying His words.

Matthew 6:25-34 is Jesus’s explanation why we should not be anxious but instead seek the kingdom of God first.  In Matthew 6:25 Jesus identifies the problem, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?”  Then, Jesus explains the solution in verses 32-34, “For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.” 33) But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.  34) “Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” The Apostle Paul told the Philippian church in Philippians 4:6-7: “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication (requests) with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Based on these verses, it is safe to say that being anxious is a natural reaction of our flesh when we don’t trust God.  Not trusting God is a sin because being anxious is not faith in God’s ability to help us.

Interpretation Based on Context

The key belief is our heavenly Father knows what we need, and He will give us what we need (see Philippians 4:19).  So, instead of being anxious about how to get our needs met, we are to seek Him and His righteousness.  Seek means to look for or inquire.  And the Greek translation for the kingdom is rule or reign.  So, if we seek (look for) the reign of God in our lives and seek to do what He says is right, then He promises to give us what we need.  James 4:7 says to “submit to God”  that is, be under God’s authority and yield by surrendering to the action, control, and power of God.  Romans10:3 states, “For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.

Romans 14:17 explains, “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”  Only as you renew your mind and submit to God, will you experience righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.  Your sinful flesh prevents you from entering the kingdom of God (see Galatians 5:19-21 and 1Corinthians 6:9-10).  So, you need to put off your sinful thoughts and put on His character of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, etc. through the Holy Spirit.  Read my post on Three Steps to Renew Your Mind (Part Two).

During several tough times in my life, I submitted to God and His righteousness, and I can testify, that God does provide what we need.  One difficult time was enduring a nasty divorce and custody battle for two toddlers, and I had no job or a place to live.  God provided miraculously when I humbled myself and sought His help through prayer, praise, and pondering the scriptures. I do have to confess that I was going to walk away from my faith in God.  I was so angry at Him for not answering my prayers to heal my abusive marriage because I did not believe in divorce, that I told God I was going to not follow Him anymore.  He has only spoken to me a handful of times and this was one of those times.  He said, “What is the alternative?”  I thought about it, and I knew the devil would destroy me, and I probably would have committed suicide because I was so depressed.   Read my amazing testimony in Trust God to Keep His Promises.

To not be anxious, you must first submit all your concerns to God as you seek Him through prayer, praise, and pondering His promises.  Because I grew up in a dysfunctional home and married an abusive first-husband, I developed an anxiety disorder.  I share how God set me free in the blog post called  Why, What, and How to Submit to God and be FREE.

Know for Certain You Will Enter The Kingdom Of God

John 3:3-8 Jesus answered him, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

5) Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 

6) That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 

7) Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 

8) The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So, it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” 

The Bible uses the term “born again” two other places.  1Peter1:3-5 states, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven (the kingdom of God) for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”  By believing that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead by the Spirit of God (see Romans 8:11), then His Spirit dwells in us, and we are born again by His Spirit.

      1Peter 1:22-25 states, “Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; for ‘All flesh is like grass and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord remains forever.’ And this word is the good news (gospel) that was preached to you.”  God’s Word is living and abiding, which means when you internalize His truths, it creates life in your soul and will abide with you and help you to purify your soul as you obey its truth.

Painful memories and our sinful desires corrupt our hearts.  My short book on my website called, “Hope for Complete Healing,” was written to help you put off wrong thinking and sinful desires and put on right thinking and righteousness, so you can love with a pure heart.  Begin reading: 1–Healing Begins by Transforming Painful Memories

Part of seeking the kingdom of God is to seek for God to keep His promises.  In Ephesians 1:3, we learn that we are “blessed in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.”  Heavenly places are where God’s kingdom is.  And, when we are saved through grace by faith in Jesus Christ, Ephesians 2:6 states that God, “raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”  So, to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness is for our advantage and a matter of priority and position.

There is hope when we seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, that God will provide what we need because He promised.

RELATED POSTS

Can You Be Too Heavenly Minded?

WHY HEAL YOUR HEART AND PURIFY YOUR SOUL?

Five Steps to Heal Your Heart and Purify Your Soul

Psalm 91 Posts

All Scripture is from the ESV. If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom.

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

Unanswered Prayers? Are You Turning God Off?

Have you ever wanted something you thought you had to have and you wanted it right away? We are the microwave society that wants instant results. When I was a teenager, I wanted a guitar so I could be cool like my friend Kelly.  I asked my Mom to give me one for Christmas, but I got a six-hole flute instead, go figure. I was so disappointed.  I now understand that my divorced mother was poor, and she could not afford to buy me a guitar. But, instead of telling me that, she said if I could playing the flute she would get me a guitar the next Christmas. Well, I practiced a lot of songs and gave her an audition, but still no guitar. Have you been disappointed when you didn’t get something you wanted? Many times, God does not give us the things we want right away.

James 4:3 states, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” Passion is a strong desire for what gives you pleasure. A passion is not always because of selfish pride. If the passion is for self-centered reasons, then it could be motivated by pride.  If the passion is zeal to do good and be God-centered or other-centered, then your motive is good. So, what is your motivation for asking God to give you what you desire? My motivation to play the guitar was from self-centered pride.  I bought a guitar many years later, and I had no musical ability to play it. God knew that, but I didn’t.

Reason 7: Pride Turns God Off.

The prayers God answers are humble prayers. James 4:6b states, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” And, 1John 3:21-23 states, “Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22) and whatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. 23) And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.”

The sin of pride blocks your prayers because pride keeps you from obeying God and loving others. To know if you have a self-centered pride issue, ask God to search your heart and examine your mind.  Jeremiah 17:9-10 explains, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.  Who can understand it? 10) I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve.” And, Psalm 139:23 states, “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!” Also, Obadiah 1:3a states, “The pride (arrogance) of your heart has deceived you, …”

Billy Graham believes, our motive for making a request to God must be humble. If your prayer is self-centered and only concerned for the gratification of your own pleasures and passions, God cannot, in faithfulness, grant your requests.1 Another way our pride turns God off is how our pride wants immediate results and does not want to wait, but sometimes we have to wait for God’s perfect timing.

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Reason eight: Sometimes we have to wait?

God wants us to grow in our faith and character more than give us our desires.  Trials of temptations and adversity are necessary, so we can become stronger in our faith and character. Lamentations 3:25–26  states, “The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait on the Lord quietly.” Dr. Lloyd-Jones believes that God sometimes delays His answer in order to deal with selfishness or things in our lives which should not be there.2

Isaac Breese believes that too often we look to prayer to solve all of our problems instead of focusing on meditation. We always feel the need to voice our concerns to God constantly telling him what we need forgetting that he already knows.3

Conclusion:

God hears the prayers of those who are humble and accepts a “no” or “wait” answer. A humble person waits patiently for His response. Often, we ask God for things that may not be good for us at the time or is His will for us. This post is the last in the series of why prayers go unanswered. To know all the reasons why God may not answer you prayers, read my previous posts:

Unanswered Prayer? Why?

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Connected?

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Presentable?

Unanswered Prayer? Doubt or Faith.

Unanswered Prayer? Asking For God’s Will or Your Will?

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL

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1. billygraham.org

2. Page 16, Lloyd-Jones D. M., (1987), Faith: tried & triumphant.  Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI

3. “It’s Not That God Didn’t Answer Your Prayers, It’s That You Didn’t Get The Response You Wanted” https://medium.com/publishous/its-not-that-god-didn-t-answer-your-prayers-it-s-that-you-didn-t-get-the-response-you-wanted-1b0bf4be9c24

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RELATED POSTS:

How I became free from pride:  The Core Negative Heart Issue

Anger Issues Protected by Pride and Judgmental Strongholds

Freedom from Impatience and Strongholds of Injustice and Unfairness

HOW PRIDE DESTROYS

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All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

Unanswered Prayer? Asking For God’s Will or Your Will?

I asked God to give me favor with my boss, so she wouldn’t lay me off.  Well, that didn’t happen.  Instead of getting depressed, I put my trust in God to direct my steps.  In the last post, I discussed the difference between faith and doubt.  Sometimes we may have faith to move mountains, but if it is not God’s will, then God will mercifully not grant our request. Jesus taught His disciples to pray for God’s will to be done.  Jesus prayed for His Father’s will in the Garden of Gethsemane. Matthew 26:39 states, “And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, ‘My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.’”

1John 5:14-16 states, “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15) 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.

Reason six: Are you praying for God’s will or your own will?

What is God’s will?

Obeying God’s instructions in the Bible is His will. The list below describes several activities He wants us to do.

1.   Eliminate sin and perfect our character as we suffering the common temptations and troubles in the world. See James 1:2-4 and Romans 5:3-5. The Apostle Peter teaches us the following in 1Peter 4:1-2 & 6, “Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 6) For this is why the gospel was preached even to those who are dead, that though judged in the flesh the way people are, they might live in the spirit the way God does.”

2.   Live in the Spirit as He does—the evidence we are living in the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness (trustworthy), gentleness (meekness-humility), and self-control. See Galatians 5:16, 22-25.

3.   Be of sound judgment (wise) and sober in spirit (temperate; not self-indulgent but self-restrained). 1Peter 5:8 states, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”

4.   Remain fervent (showing a great warmth of feeling) in your love for others. See Proverbs 10:12; 1Peter 1:22; 1Peter 4:8.

5.   Be hospitable (friendly; entertaining of guests). See Hebrews 13:2; Romans 12:13; and 1Peter 4:9.

6.   Serve one another using the special gifts given to you. See Luke 16:1-2; 1Peter 4:10; and Romans 12:6.

7.   Rejoice always. See 1Thessalonians 5:16 and Philippians 4:4.

8.   Pray without ceasing. See 1Thessalonians 5:17 and Romans 12:12.

9.   Give thanks in everything. See 1Thessalonians 5:18; Ephesians 5:20; Ephesians 4:6 and 5:4; and Colossians 4:2.

10. Serve those you work for as though serving God. See Ephesians 6:5-8 and 1Peter 2:18.

11. Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution. See 1Peter 2:13-15 and Hebrews 13:17.

12. Do what is right and good for the benefit of others. Look up 1Peter 2:15; James 4:17; Revelations 22:11; Galatians 6:9-10; Hebrews 13:16; and 3 John 1:11.

13. Abstain from sexual immorality. See 1Corinthians 6:15-20 and 1Thessalonians 4: 3-5, 7.

How do we know God’s will?

The only way to know God’s will is to meditate on His Words day and night. Joshua 1:8 states, “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” Also, read Psalm 1. Be careful of the wrong thinking that being prosperous and successful does not include temptations, trials, and suffering for Christ. Your number one goal or ambition for your life is to love and please God, love others, and to do His will to bring Him glory. We should not seek to be prosperous or successful by the world’s definition.

Know God’s perfect will by transforming unhealthy beliefs with the truths of God’s Word.  Romans 12:2 states, “… but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.” When you do the will of God, you are not giving in to your sinful desires. Since sin begins in your mind, so you must transform your thinking to know the will of God. My book on my website explains how to do this.

I learned that when we pray for other people; we need to pray for God’s will, not our will.  God gave us a free will and He will not change our will.  We must be willing to change, and the other person we are praying for must be willing to change. So, when we don’t know how to pray for someone or what to pray, the Holy Spirit does, so pray in the Spirit. Romans 8:26-28, states, “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27) And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. 28) And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” The Holy Spirit is in those who believe in Jesus Christ and received Him as their savior from eternal death and the wrath of God against sin. The Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness and will intercede for us according to the will of God. And know that whatever happens, when we love God, He will use it for our good to accomplish His purpose.

Conclusion:

Understand what the Apostle John tells us in 1John 2:17, “And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” If you want to live in eternity with God when you die, you will need to do His will.  I pray for each person who reads this post, that you will seek to please God and to do His will. Know that each of us must stand before the judgement seat of God and give an account for what we have done while in the body, whether good or evil. (2 Corinthians 5:10).

RELATED POSTS:

Unanswered Prayer? Doubt or Faith.

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Presentable?

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Connected?

Unanswered Prayer? Why?

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL


All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request. P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

Unanswered Prayer? Doubt or Faith.

Why are some prayers answered, but some are not? The Bible promises in Matthew 21:22, “And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” James 1:6-8 states, “But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7) For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord 8) he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

  • Do you doubt God answers prayer?  If yes, then ask God to show you the painful memory of disappointment that is causing you to doubt.  Read chapter five of my book called, 5–Finding Painful Memories and Healing Issues.
  • Are you disappointed because of unanswered prayers? If yes, then ask God to show you what His best is for you and accept His sovereign will for you. Next, mentally submit your plans and requests to God and trust He has a good purpose for your life in His timing. Many of King David’s Psalms reveal his disappointment and submission to God’s sovereignty in his life.  See my post called Know Your Purpose? .
  • Do you feel you are not worthy, and that God does not love you?  This unhealthy belief is from a painful memory, so let God reveal it and heal it. To understand how this works, read my book on my website.
    • Even if you don’t feel God cares, the truth is, He does. 1Peter 5:7 says, “casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” And when you commit your problems to God in faith, you will have peace. Believe that “He causes all things to work together for good, for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).  Do you believe?

Reason Five: Do you doubt God in any way?

First, what is faith?

Hebrews 11:1 states, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” And Romans 8:24 tells us that “For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?” Faith believes God will do what He has promised, so I pray the promises of God over situations in my life.

Matthew 9:29Then he touched their eyes, saying, ‘According to your faith, be it done to you.’” This verse is most concerning because what we receive will be according to our faith. So, if we have a little faith then we will get a little.  This reminds me of the story in 2Kings 4 of the widow who met Elisha and asked him how she can pay her debt. When he asked her what she had, she said she only had a jar of oil.  He told her to gather as many empty vessels from her neighbor as she could. Then pour the oil she had into those empty vessels. She could have doubted that such a thing can be done, but according to her faith she gathered all the empty vessels she could find. Then she filled every vessel from that one jar of oil. The oil stopped when all the vessels were filled. Now, if she only got a few jars, then that was all the oil she would get. It is the same with our faith. The moral of the story is that faith requires absolute obedience to experience answers to prayer.

Matthew 14:31Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, ‘O you of little faith, why did you doubt?’” Jesus said this to Peter when he obeyed Jesus and got out of the boat amid the storm and walked on the water.  He was doing great until he took his eyes off Jesus and looked at the waves.  When he realized what he was doing, he doubted and began to sink.  The moral of the story, keep your eyes on Jesus, not your circumstances.

Matthew 16:8But Jesus, aware of this, said, ‘O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread?’” The disciples witnessed Jesus taking five loves of bread and two fish to feed 5000 people, then seven loaves to feed 4000 people. In this verse, the disciples were concerned about not bringing food with them for the journey. Did they forget how Jesus multiplied the food he had to feed thousands of people? The moral of the story; Jesus will do miracles to provide what you need according to your faith.

Matthew 17:20He said to them, ‘Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.’” In this story, the disciples could not cast out a demon from a young boy.  When Jesus cast the demon out, the disciples asked Him why they could not.  Now, Jesus does not mean to move a literal mountain, otherwise there would be no mountains.  The mountains represent the impossible things in our lives. 

For example, I needed a place to live after my first-husband was throwing me and the children out of our home.  I prayed for weeks for God to show me where to go.  But I did not have a job and could not afford to rent, though I began an alterations business to at least put food on the table for me and my children.  I went to a banker in my church and he said I could not get a mortgage because my income was so low and I did not have a steady income.  I continued to pray, and then God, yes, God did a miracle. The banker from my church called me and said he found a small bank in another county who will give me a small mortgage.  WOW!!! I could buy a fixer-upper house and God increased my business so I could pay the mortgage and all my other expenses, plus fix the house up.  The moral of the story; God still does miracles to meet our needs.

Mark 5:34And he said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your disease.’” The story behind this verse is of a woman who went to every physician and they could not help her.  Her only hope was for Jesus to heal her, so by faith, she approached Jesus through the crowd that was around Him so she could touch His garment. Jesus felt power leave Him, so He turned to see who had touched Him, she confessed that she touched Him. Her faith brought the healing she hoped for. The moral of the story; faith connects to the power of God. Why are many not healed when they pray by faith and believe God will heal them? Read, How the Devil Causes Trouble and my other posts on why prayers are not answered.

When you doubt, you are not trusting God.

Are you consumed by worry or anger? When we worry and are angry, we doubt God can help us. Our emotions become like the waves of the sea described in James 1:6 because our negative thoughts act as the wind to whip-up our emotions. When we worry, we are fearing the worst will happen and we are not trusting in God.  Don’t expect He will help you if you are not asking and trusting Him.  Philippians 4:6-7 states, “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7) And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Anger demands justice and retribution for an unfair wrong done against you.  God will patiently wait for you to turn the issue to Him before He acts on your behalf.

Proverbs 3:5-10 explains how to trust God.

5) Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding

            Does your heart reflect trust?

6) In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths

            Do you acknowledge Him in all your plans?

7) Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and turn away from evil. 8) It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones

            Are you humble? Do you fear God and repent when you sin and do evil?

9) Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; 10) then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine

            Do you tithe?

Conclusion

The greater your faith, the greater the miracles.  The greater the doubt, the more you worry and become angry. Faith looks to God in hope and expects Him to provide excellent things.  Doubt looks to the distressing circumstances and sees no hope that things can be better.  God is waiting for us to come to Him in faith and receive the good things He has for us.

RELATED POSTS:

15 Promises We Can Trust God to Keep

Pt. 2: Why You Can and Cannot Trust God? 

Unanswered Prayer? Why?

Unanswered Prayer—Are You Connected?

Unanswered Prayer—Are You Presentable?

How to Keep Our Hearts Pure, Loving, and Tender Toward the Lord, Part 6 —

Grace For The Journey Before we were saved our heart was hard and cold toward God. We wanted many things, even sinful things, but not God. We felt little affection for Him and had no interest in the things of God. But God wants to have an affectionate relationship with us. So when we […]

via How to Keep Our Hearts Pure, Loving, and Tender Toward the Lord, Part 6 — pastorterryjdavis

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Presentable?

If you were to appear before a King or Ruler of a Nation and was given the chance to ask him or her to do something, how would you dress and act? Take a moment and visualize it. Would you be humbled, cleaned up, neat, polite, be conscious of customs as to not offend, etc.? Now, how is that different than coming before the King of the Universe in prayer? Do you think you can come before Him in pride and with an unrepentant, filthy heart and demand Him to give you what you want?

To continue the simple illustration of electricity. If prayer is the power cord and faith is the action of plugging into the power source, then hope is the expectation the power source will deliver results. So, if a lamp is plugged in but does not turn on, then you need to look for the reason. We know we are plugged into God through the Holy Spirit that dwells in us when we believe in Jesus Christ and received forgiveness of our sins.  One way our prayers are short-circuited is from unrepentant sin.

Reason Four: Unrepentant Sin short-circuits our prayers.

We cannot approach a Holy God in prayer if we are not presentable by having unrepented sin in our lives. What is sin? Sin is disobedience to the commands of God to love Him by keeping His commands and to love one another. Sin is knowing the right thing to do and not doing it (James 4:17). The following verses explain why prayers are not answered because of unrepentant sin.

Psalms 66:18 states, “If I regard wickedness (sin) in my heart, the Lord will not hear;”

Isaiah 59:1,2 states, “Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear.  2) But your iniquities (sin) have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden His face from you so that He will not hear.

1Peter 3:12 also says, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

Psalms 34:14-18 explains, “Turn away from evil (to harm) and do good; seek peace and pursue it. 15) The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous and his ears toward their cry. 16) The face of the LORD is against those who do evil, to cut off the memory of them from the earth. 17) When the righteous cry for help, the LORD hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. 18) The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

Unrepentant sin includes not forgiving those who sinned against you because God instructs us to forgive. Matthew 5:23, 24, states, “So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First, be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” If you struggle forgiving those who did evil against you, please read my post on why we should forgive.

Wayne Jackson writes in “6 Reasons Why Some Prayers Are Never Answered” on ChristianCourier.com. “If you know that someone has a legitimate grievance against you, how can you sincerely approach God in prayer? Uncorrected problems with brethren are extremely detrimental. Peter certainly stressed that discordant home relationships could hinder prayers (1 Pet. 3:7). Where domestic wrangling and bitterness prevail, prayer can never be effective.” What do you think? Would you agree?

Solve the problem of sin through repentance and the work of Christ on the cross.

1John 1:9 states, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Pastor Darryl Baker writes in “Abiding in the Word” blog, “Because of what Christ did in bearing our sin and the punishment of our sin, we no longer need to live fearful of approaching our heavenly Father. The sin that separated us is gone and we can now approach God with complete confidence. So as a believer we should daily draw near to Him and He will draw near to us. Don’t ever run from God, run to Him. If you have sinned repent, and run back to the Father for He awaits with arms open wide to help you get back on your feet again.” And he writes, “It is the devil who tries to keep us from approaching God by making us afraid to do so through wrong thoughts. Scripture teaches us to come boldly to the throne of grace, to find grace and help in our time of need. God is waiting to help us overcome whatever we may be dealing with in life, but we must draw near to Him to get that help. The door is open so don’t ever run from Him. He is your answer, He is your deliverer, He wants to help you; and most importantly He wants you to know Him.”  I agree, but we need to come before Him with a repentant and humble spirit.

Hebrews 4:14-16 states, “Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.

15) For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. 

16) Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

James 4:6-8 says, “But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.‘ 7) Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8) Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”

These verses are the theme verses for my county jail Bible study. I have the women memorize them. One inmate return because her roommate had alcohol in the apartment which meant she broke her probation. When she came to the Bible Study, she was excited to still be able to quote the verses above from memory. I encourage you to memorize Hebrews 4:14-16 and James 4:6-8.

Conclusion:

God is loving, merciful, gracious, and slow to anger. Psalm 103:8 states, “The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” He is also Holy and Just, Isaiah 5:16 states, “But the LORD of hosts is exalted in justice, and the Holy God shows Himself holy in righteousness.” So, we need to approach Him with humility and with repentance if we want him to hear our petitions.

RELATED POSTS

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL

Reasons One and Two Why Prayer Is Not Answered

Unanswered Prayer—Reason Three

How to Recognize and Eliminate Emotional Cancer


All verses are from the English Standard Bible.  If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom.

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S., experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Connected?

Nothing is more discouraging to our faith than not getting what we pray or hope for. The first two reasons why God may not give what you ask for are: 1) God may not be your Father and 2) what you are asking for may not be good.  Read Reasons One and Two Why Prayer Is Not Answered.

Now, if you know for certain that God is your Father, and you believe what you are asking for is good in the sight of God, then do you only pray when you are desperate or need something? Humans were created for relationships, and because we are made in the image of God, He wants a relationship with us.  A healthy relationship requires spending time and talking with those we love. So, the third reason why you may not be getting results from your prayers is not being in a  healthy relationship with God.

For example, if a lamp is not plugged into a power source the lamp will not produce light. By faith, you plug in a lamp to an outlet and expect the light to come on.  For the light to work, it needs to stay connected to the power source. Staying connected to God is to remain in Him. Are you always plugged into God and the Bible?

John 15:7 states, “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”

  1. Are you abiding in God and are His words abiding in you?

Abide means to remain in something. We abide in God in the same way we rest in a place of shelter. When we abide in God, we trust He will protect us and provide for us. We remain in the shelter of God by faith through continual prayer with thanksgiving, praise, and pondering Scriptural truths.

Psalm 91:1 states, “He who dwells in the shelter (secret place) of the Most High will abide (rest) in the shadow of the Almighty.” Read my post called Psalm 91:1–How to Dwell in Heaven Now to learn more about how to abide in heaven with God.

When we pray with thanksgiving, praising God, and ponder Scripture, then our spirit draws near to Him, and He promises to draw near to us (see James 4:8). Do you only pray to Him and read your Bible in church on Sunday morning and maybe Wednesday night service?  Do you say a nightly prayer after spending the day worrying or doing and thinking about worldly things?  If your answer is yes, then you are not abiding in God.

Do you abide in God’s Word by reading it every day and memorizing it? If not, resolve to begin today.  The mornings are the best time to read the Bible so you can meditate on what you read throughout the day.  Writing out a key verse and reviewing it throughout the day will help you stay connected to God. 2 John 1:9 states, “Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ does not have God (in their hearts). Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.”

How do I know if I am abiding in God?

1John 3:18-24 explains how you know if you are abiding in God.

18) Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.

19) By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him;

20) for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything.

21) Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God;

22) and whatever we ask we receive from him because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him.

23) And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.

24) Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this, we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us.

Do you love your brothers and sisters in Christ?  Do you want to know if you have resentment towards anyone, then read How to Recognize and Eliminate Emotional Cancer.

If you have a hard time loving people, then read Love From a Pure Heart to become free to love others well.  1Corinthians 13:13 states, “So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1John 3:17 explains, “But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees a brother (Christian brother or sister) in need, yet closes his heart against them, how does God’s love abide in him?

Conclusion

Prayer is our connection to the living, almighty God, and is the channel through which we receive power, wisdom, direction, and healing. Prayer is not only asking for things. You must remain in connection with God through continual prayer with thanksgiving by faith, reading His Word, and loving your brothers and sisters in Christ. If your heart does not condemn you then you have the confidence to be connected to God. Ephesians 3:11and 12 states, “This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him.

RELATED POSTS:

How We Know God Will Never Forsake Us?

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL

If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom.

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

 

Unanswered Prayer? Why?

We all have experienced times when we ask, plead, and beg God for something and do not get what we asked for. I have requests that I am still waiting for God to give me. I struggle spiritually in the area of prayer and why my prayers sometimes do not get answered. Are you sometimes not sure how you should pray? Do you wonder why God does not answer your prayers?  I have decided to study what the Bible says about prayer and the reasons why our prayers may not be answered the way we want them to be.  So, over the next several posts, I will reveal what I discover in God’s Word.

The Bible says, He will give us what we ask for, so why doesn’t He? Matthew 7:7, 8 states, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8) For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” Jesus spoke these words during His sermon on the mount.  Verses 7 and 8 are clarified in verse 11, where Jesus explains, “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” This verse identifies two reasons why God does not give what we ask for in prayer.

Reason One: Is God your Father?

Some people say that everyone is a child of God because we are created in God’s image.  Being made in God’s image does not make us children of God. The next three verses explain who the children of God really are:

John 1:12 states, “But to all who did receive him (Jesus), who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” Did you receive the forgiveness of your sins and the Spirit of God to be your Lord and Savior and believe in Jesus’s name?

Romans 8:14,16 explains, “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 16) The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.” Are you led by the Spirit of God and do what is pleasing to Him?

1 John 3:10 states, “By this, it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.” Do you practice right thinking and behavior and do you love your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus?

If God is your Father, do you believe He would give you something He felt was not the best?  Did your earthly father give you everything you asked for? Did you become offended when you didn’t get what you asked for?  I did.  It is natural to be upset when we don’t get what we want.

Reason 2: Is your request something good?

James 1:17 tells us “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”  You may want something you think is good, but you don’t know the potential problems. God knows all things, including the future, trust Him to give good things, not what you want. Isaiah 46:10 states, “declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times to things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’”  God has a good purpose for you and your future. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” What you are asking for may not be part of the wonderful plan God has for you. So, you need to do what Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” Do you trust the LORD with all your heart and are willing to accept the better plan He has for you, though you do not understand?  I do not understand why I am being laid off, but I trust God has a good purpose for me and will direct my steps.

You may say, but Psalm  37:4 and 5 say, “Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5) Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act.”  Are you delighting in the Lord? What does it mean to delight in the Lord?  Have you committed your way to the LORD and submitted every part of your life to Him? Do you desire what God considers good?

God’s timetable is not the same as ours. He knows better than we do when the best time is for our prayers to be answered. Hebrews 6:13-15 explain how we may have to be patient and wait. In the story of Abraham, God promised a son to Abraham. But Abraham became impatient when Sarah didn‘t bear him a son, so she gave him her servant to be his wife. Abraham and Sarah tried to fulfill the promise of God themselves, and the result was disastrous. We are still seeing the disastrous results of their not trusting and waiting for God. Fifteen years after God promised them a son, He fulfilled the promise when He saw it was best.  Will you trust God today with the desires of your heart and wait for Him, even if it takes fifteen years or more?

From billygraham.org:

Q: Why doesn’t God seem to answer my prayers?

A: So often we are inclined to think that the only answer God can give our prayers is “yes.” We need to remember that “no” is an answer also. “No” is certainly an answer of love on the part of our Heavenly Father when we ask Him for things which are not really for our good or for His glory. God does not always give us what we want; He gives us what we need. Just as a good parent does not grant all the requests of his child, God does not answer every request in the way we desire.

Conclusion:

The first two reasons why our prayers may go unanswered are that God may not be your Father and what you are asking is not good to God, who gives the best. First, make sure God is your Father by believing in His Son and receive the forgiveness of your sins that was purchased by Jesus on the cross. Invite Jesus into your heart and to be Lord of your life.  Second, accept that no answer is also an answer, and God sometimes does not give us what we ask because it was not good in His sight.

RELATED POSTS:

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL

HOW TO PRAY USING THE LORD’S PRAYER AS A MODEL

Do you struggle with how or what to pray? You are not alone, even the disciples struggled. Jesus prayed to His Father in heaven all the time and explained how to pray to the Father in Matthew chapter 6.  This prayer model, I think, came from a conference called “Praying for One Hour With Jesus” by Larry Lea. I have modified it to help me in my prayer time and I hope you find it helpful.  Prayer is essential for staying close to God and not drifting away into dangerous waters where all kinds of evil lurk to destroy you.  If you would like the PDF of this prayer format, then send me a request through my contact page.  In my next post, I will address some of the reasons why our prayers do not get answered.

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.”

Begin your prayer time with worship and praise (Ps. 100:1-5) and remember that He is your Father through the blood of Jesus and believing in His name.  (Gal. 4:4-6; Rom. 8:14-17). Hallow (regard as holy) the names of God…

    1. Yahweh Tsidkenu – The Lord who is our Righteousness (Jer. 23:6)
    2. Yahweh M’Kaddesh – The Lord who is our Sanctifier (Ex. 31:13)
    3. Yahweh Shalom – The Lord who is our Peace (Judges 6:24)
    4. Yahweh Shammah – The Lord who is present with us (Ez. 48:35)
    5. Yahweh Jireh – The Lord who is our Provider (Gen. 22:13,14)
    6. Yahweh Nissi – The Lord who is our Banner or Victory (Ex. 17:8-15)
    7. Yahweh Rohi – The Lord who is our Shepherd (Psa. 23:1)
    8. Yahweh Rophe – The Lord who is our Healer (Ex. 15:26)

“Your kingdom come; your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Now set your priorities for the day, determining that God’s perfect Will be accomplished in the following areas. (1 John 5:14-15)

MON.   Your nation (political and judicial leaders) (1 Tim. 2:1-2)
TUES.   Your family (mate, children, other family members)
WED.   Your Church (Pastor Eph. 6:20, Col. 4:4; leadership, fellow saints)
THUR.  Missionaries
FRI.      You (Rom. 12:1-2)
SAT.     Your Neighbors and Friends

“Give us today our daily bread.”

Present your needs to God. (Notice that Jesus took for granted that we would pray daily!)  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God (Phil. 4:6).  Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving (Col. 4:2).  Matthew 6:34 says “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

  “Forgive us our sins as we also have forgiven those who sin against us.”

Make sure nothing is impairing your relationship with the Father.

    1. Ask God to forgive you and cleanse you from all sin. (Matt. 18:23-35, 1 John 1:9)
    2. Forgive others who may have hurt or offended you. (Matt. 6:14,15)
    3. Prepare to be forgiving to all those who would offend you that day.

“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”

Seek to be “led by the Spirit” throughout the day.

    1. Pray and expect that God will lead you by the Spirit and His Word. (Rom. 8:14)
    2. Pray that forces beyond your control won’t lead you into trials (2 Peter 2:9)
    3. Pray for yourself and others to be delivered from evil temptations. (Luke 22:31-32)
    4. Put on the armor of God so that you might stand against the wiles of the evil one. (Eph. 6:11-18)

“For Yours is the kingdom and the power, and the glory forever.”

Affirm the absolute Lordship of Christ in all things.

    1. Confess the victory you have as a member of God’s kingdom. (Luke 12:32)
    2. Declare by faith that the power of God will be manifested that day. (Ps. 21:13)
    3. Proclaim God’s glory to cover the earth. (Ps. 72:19)

Another prayer model I use almost every day is Who God is — Daily A-C-T-S Prayers

RELATED POSTS:

Four Reasons for Authority in Prayer

How to Experience a Heavenly Life on Earth.

Psalm 91:1–How to Dwell in Heaven Now

Four Realities of the Spirit World

How to Recognize and Eliminate Emotional Cancer

Emotional cancer stays hidden deep in your heart even when you think you are okay. It is infectious and spreads into other areas of your life, and it destroys your peace, joy, and righteousness (spiritual right thinking). God gave me this revelation last week when it was triggered by an email. It was hidden, and I didn’t realize I had it until it was triggered.

How did I discover I had emotional cancer?

Last week I received a layoff notice. I accept that I am getting laid off because of the hardship placed on the University from the COVID-19 pandemic, and I have a peace that God will provide for my needs and lead me to another job. In my last post, I describe how I was processing this difficult news and how I felt betrayed by the Department Head because she told us that all our jobs are secure and that everyone matters to her. So when I received an email from her, wanting to know when she could chat (her words), I became anxious, and for a lack of a better word, I felt this unsettling “grrrrr” inside my soul. I felt like the cat on my home page. Do you know that feeling?

I had forgiven her and put off my negative beliefs and turned it over to God, and I was doing good. So I thought. So, I read two of my blogs called “Being Thankful During Hard Times” and “Caution—How to Get Out of The Pit,” and they both helped me change my wrong thinking and refocus again on God’s promises. I didn’t know why I felt offended when I saw her email until I read a blog post about grief where the writer wrote about the need to tell your story and not to allow your grief to turn into resentment. As soon as I read the word “resentment,” I realized why I was still upset, it was resentment for being, well, betrayed.

What is resentment and how do we develop this emotional cancer?

The dictionary defines resentment as a feeling of indignation and showing displeasure toward a person, from a sense of being injured or offended by some act, remark, insult, etc. I felt injured by my Department Head and became offended. A person who has resentment will show anger and ill will for any real or perceived wrong or injury, which they believe is unfair. Resentments build up and grow in your heart throughout your life. These painful memories cause negative thinking and false beliefs, which continue to feed our resentment. When this emotional cancer is not exposed and healed, it leads to bitterness and hate. Job 7:11 states, “Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.” A bitter person only focuses on their pain and it prevents them from maturing. Have you noticed that the older a person gets, the more bitter they become? When my mother got dementia and could not remember her painful memories, she became a very pleasant, peaceful person for the first time in her life. Read, “Hope for Lasting Peace, Love, and Victory” to learn more.

How to know you have resentment.

Read the following questions. If you answer yes to any one of them, you have hidden resentment.

  • Do you complain about someone or something?
  • Do you dread being around a certain person?
  • When you hear a person’s name do you feel irritated with that person?
  • Do you feel something is unfair or someone was unfair to you?
  • Do you become depressed and pouty, or angry and unkind when you are disappointed?
  • Do you feel jealous or envious of someone because of that person’s rivalry, success, or advantages?
  • Do you feel hurt by something someone did or said?
  • Do you recognize you do not have peace, joy, and right thinking?

Why is feeling offended a sign you have the emotional cancer of resentment?

Most people do not realize they have offenses in their hearts. So be mindful of how you answer the questions in the previous section. When you experience emotional pain and displeasure from an unkind act, unfairness, mistreatment, disrespect, betrayal, unacceptance, and being ignored it creates a painful memory and an offense in your heart. Disappointment also creates a painful memory and causes us to be offended because we are not getting what we want and we feel it is unfair. Once you are offended, the seed of resentment is planted. We will always have disappointment, so resolving to maintain a forgiving and thankful attitude will prevent us from becoming offended and resentful. This is why it is essential to discipline your mind to stay on heavenly promises. Read how to develop heavenly thinking in the posts called Can You Be Too Heavenly Minded? and How to experience a heavenly life on earth.

Recall your last argument or the last time you were frustrated or disappointed. Using the definition of an offense, can you identify what you or the other person was offended about? Once you discover the cause of the offense, then you can work to solve it and heal the emotional cancer of resentment. My book called “Hope for Complete Healing” on my website identifies many causes for offense and the solution. I encourage you to read it so you can love well and have peace, joy, and right thinking. Also, read, “#1 Destroyer of All Relationships and the Solution” for a better understanding of how destructive being offended is.

How do I eliminate resentment?

I recommend the following actions. First, capture the offending thoughts by acknowledging they exist. The evidence is not feeling peace, joy, and thinking the right thoughts. Second, once you acknowledge you are offended, then ask God to show you why you are offended. Third, forgive the person or persons involved. You may have to accept the situation you are disappointed by and trust God’s promises. Fourth, ask God to remove the wrong thinking and false beliefs about the situation and then to take out the seed of resentment sown in your heart. You don’t know you have resentment until it sprouts and takes root in your heart. So as soon as you realize you are offended by a perceived unfairness that causes disappointment, then immediately ask God to remove the seed of resentment before it causes problems.  If resentment is left go, it will become bitterness and hate, at which point, the emotional cancer is at stage 4. Hebrews12:15 tells us to “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled.” Please read the Five Steps to Heal Your Heart and Purify Your Soul for the prayer model, you can pray to eliminate offenses and resentments.

Conclusion:

You now know that emotional cancer is resentment and how it develops in your heart. I ask some questions to help you uncover the hidden resentments you may have. The key indicator you have this cancer is feeling offended. Eliminating emotional cancer is not easy but is necessary so it does not spread and affect your decisions and relationships. There is hope for healing resentment in your life, but you first need to ask God to expose it for Him to heal it. Jeremiah 17:9-10 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? 10) I the LORD search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.


If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the link to my post and website with your friends and family, hopeforcompletehealing.com. The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom.

Contact me at hopeforcompletehealing@gmail.com, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).

RELATED POSTS

Love from a Pure Heart

WHY HEAL YOUR HEART AND PURIFY YOUR SOUL?

The Link Between Disappointment, Resentment, and Self-control

Why Should I Forgive?