Genesis 22 has one of the most common stories in the faith. Despite the chapter being so famous, not enough lessons have been drawn from it.
The chapter talks about how God tested Abraham by asking him to sacrifice Isaac his son. This story has one of the most crucial prayer lessons especially if you are praying for provision.
The principles applied in this story fit perfectly in the prayer of provision. Before you make any other prayer for provision, learn these lessons.
God’s Test after the Prayer for Provision
The story of Abraham in Genesis 22 begins with an idea God had; He wanted to test Abraham. When it comes to God’s provision, it always begins with a test.
In the story of the Israelites in the wilderness, God took them to the wilderness first before He began providing for them. Going to the wilderness without food is a proper test.
When God wanted to provide for the widow of Zarephath, He tested her by asking her to give her last meal to Elijah.
Jesus also applied this principle; before He multiplied fish and bread to feed the 5000, He asked His disciples to give the crowd something to eat. That was definitely a test.
God doesn’t do anything unless it brings glory to His name. Even providing for us, He only provides if the provision will bring glory to His name.
With this being the case, it is impossible for your situation to give glory to God unless it is a test from God.
And here is where the problem with most of the prayers for provision that we make comes from; we don’t want God’s tests.
Waking up broke and asking God to give you money is a foolish way to pray. God has to put you in a situation that only Him can provide. That way, when He provides, you will not attribute the provision to anyone else but Him and that is what He wants.
Therefore, when you ask God to provide, be ready for a test. If you embrace the test, God will come through for you. If you reject the test, God will have no obligation to provide for you.
Giving up what you love for God’s Provision
God is a judge. He answers prayers for provision according to His law. One of the requirements in the law of God is sacrifice.
In Genesis 22, God asks Abraham to sacrifice His only son. In return God gave Abraham children as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore.
Take note that God repaid Abraham’s one son with children as numerous as the stars in the sky. When you want a better job, God will demand that you sacrifice your current job. If you want more money, God will require that you sacrifice the little money you have.
If you want God to provide a husband, you have to sacrifice your relationship with your father. If you are a man and you want God to provide a wife, you have to leave your father and mother. If you want God to save you from death, you have to give up your life for Jesus.
This is where most people who pray for provision give up. It is no secret that giving up what we treasure the most is hard. But our father of faith did it. What excuse do we have?
Abraham was a human being just like us. He loved Isaac the same way fathers love their sons if not more. God asked him to kill that boy and He never questioned it.
Getting provision from God takes serious decision making. It is extreme!
God decides when to answer your Prayer for Provision
God is God and there is nothing we can do about it. He does what He wants and there is nowhere we can take Him.
God provided a ram just before the knife pierced Isaac. God multiplied the flour and oil of the widow of Zarephath just before she starved. God multiplied the steps of the four lepers when they decided to go to the camp of the Assyrians.
God could have intervened in these situations earlier but He waited until the very last minute. The common denominator being that all these people had given up hope.
Abraham had accepted that his son was going to die. The widow of Zarephath had accepted that she was going to eat her last meal and die. The four lepers were at peace with the fact that they would be killed when they get to the camp of the Assyrians.
God wanted them to give up all hope before He provided. The same applies to us; if we ask for God’s provision but we have options, God will wait. The provision of God only comes after we have accepted the inevitable.
God’s Provision is Scary but Harmless
The process of getting provision from God is very scary. It involves accepting brutal terms and conditions. The conditions are usually on the border of death.
Jesus said statements like “Go sell everything you have, give the money to the poor then take up your cross and follow me”. Does that sound like a simple request?
Before God signs up to be your provider, He has to strip you of everything and giving up everything is scary.
But despite the scary nature of the process, God is careful that no harm will befall you. Abraham never killed Isaac. The widow of Zarephath never went for a day without food. The four lepers never suffered a scratch.
God is more careful than any man and He wants us to believe that. The sooner you believe it, the less scary your process will be.
God’s Provision is Permanent
After you go through the scary process, you will be guaranteed of God’s irrevocable provision. God is everlasting and any promise He makes is everlasting by nature.
You only need to earn God’s signature once. Abraham only had to go through the scare of losing his son once. After that, he entered rest and God went into work to fulfill what He had promised.
The widow of Zarephath only had to face the threat of starvation once. From that day until when the drought in Israel ended, she had no fear of running out of flour and oil.
When you have the assurance that God will only test you once, you will be motivated to do it once and for all. Even Jesus only needed to die on the cross once and He was exalted forever.
God is faithful. Trust Him to provide for you and pay the price He demands from you.
Praying in Tongues for Provision
When you pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit will automatically request God to provide all your needs but you will have to go through the tests.
The good thing with praying in tongues is that the Holy Spirit only requests for provisions whose tests you are able to pass. On top of that, the Holy Spirit requests God to give you the necessary strength required to pass the tests.
As a result, you will know which test God has given you based on the gift of knowledge that comes from the Holy Spirit. And with the gift of wisdom, the Holy Spirit will help you navigate the tests.
This is why praying in tongues is very powerful. Embrace it.