Mark 9:23-27 "'If you can'?" said Jesus. "Everything is possible for him who believes." Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!" When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the evil spirit. "You deaf and mute spirit," he said, "I command you, come out of him and never enter him again." The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, "He's dead." But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.
This story is about a father's small faith who nevertheless experienced a great miracle of deliverance for his demonised son because he was willing to ask Jesus to help him overcome his unbelief. We all have been there in the past (maybe even now) where our faith in Jesus is so small that our prayer always begins with, "If it is Thy will..." Jesus would have responded "If it is my will?" The issue is not whether it is God's will to heal and set people free; the issue is really whether we believe it is God's will to heal and set people free, for Jesus has said: "Everything is possible for him who believes." The problem of unanswered prayer is not found in GOD, but in US. Mark 6:5-6 records an incredible incident where Jesus couldn't heal many people because of their unbelief: "He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he was amazed at their lack of faith." It was the same Jesus, but few in that town were healed because of their lack of faith. The reply that Jesus gave to this unbelieving father is a blank cheque for all of us: "EVERYTHING is possible for him who BELIEVES."
We all struggles with issue of faith daily - some over sickness and health, some over job challenges, some over financial difficulties, some over children's behaviour, some over relationships with colleagues & family members and some over the salvation of our loved ones. Whatever may be the issue confronting us, it is very easy to despair of there being a breakthrough because we have asked for prayers but nothing has happened. And like the father, we have prayed but our prayer begins with: "If you can do anything" or "If it is Your will..." The words IF and BELIEVE are mutually exclusive. There cannot be an IF if there is a BELIEVE, because IF suggests that some things are NOT possible with God ("If you can...") but BELIEVE affirms that EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE with God!
Whatever may be the challenge facing us today, let's not pray with this preamble: "If You can/If it's Thy will..." Instead, let's confess, "Help me overcome my unbelief!" The devil's taunt to Jesus is: "If you are the Son of God..." IF undermines faith. To have faith is to believe that EVERYTHING is POSSIBLE WITH GOD! No "If's" and "buts' but only believe!
Father, help us overcome our unbelief when our faith is wavering. For we know that we can hinder Your power by our lack of faith. Instead, grant us faith to believe that all things are possible with God! Make us Your channel of divine power to bring salvation, healing and deliverance to people around us. Amen.