Confidence toward God

Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.

1 John 3:21-22

In this life there is no more reliable being than our Heavenly Father. God will never fail us and all His promises are true and faithful. When we pray with faith, He has promised to grant our requests. But in addition to faith, there is another requirement to achieve such requests, our obedience. Just as a father or mother will not be motivated to please the requests of a disobedient son, let us not think that God, our Father, would do the opposite.

These two verses of the first letter of the apostle John have a lot of cloth to cut. The first thing is to meditate on this conditional: if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. How would our heart condemn us? Here John is not referring with the word heart to the organ that pumps blood but to our conscience. In that sense, if our conscience condemns us is because it is making us see that we do not act in the right way. When it comes to our relationship with God, our conscience tells us that we are failing.

Failure to God, disobedience to Him, diminishes our confidence in Him. And it is not because God is going to fail to fulfill His promises, but because we are aware that our acts are not pleasing to Him and, therefore, we may be unable to receive what we asked for. Will the character of God change due to our infidelity? In no way, the character of God is immutable and He will always be faithful. Our attitude is not to run from God when we realize that we fail, but to reconcile with Him confessing our sins.

God will never betray the trust we place in Him. And, like our loving Father, His desire is not to see us sad or in need, but to supply us with whatever we need. But we must understand that if we do not receive what we expect, before we become angry with God, it is better for us to review our conduct before Him and compare truthfully if we are as John tells us, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight. And again, if we are wrong, let us not justify ourselves, but let us acknowledge our guilt.

Now, it is possible that our conscience tells us that we are on the right path and yet we are not receiving what we ask of God in prayer. That should not undermine our trust in Him. The English preacher Matthew Henry (1662-1714) said, “Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sins, but sometimes the test of extraordinary graces. Sanctified afflictions are spiritual promotions.” The silence of God can be motivated because we are being tested.

Our trust in God must remain unalterable, just as His faithfulness is unalterable. It does not matter if our petition is delayed for our sin or because of the trial. In each case, let’s do the right thing. If we have been disobedient, it is time to humble ourselves repentant before God and ask for forgiveness for our sins. If we are under trial, let us continue to pray in faith, trusting in Him, praising Him, worshiping Him, and giving thanks at all times. He is faithful and good all the time. He will never fail His promises. God bless you.

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