Praise the Lord saints.
We should not write out prayers and send them in with a very generous donation at the request of a famous TV evangelist. Don’t expect them to be more appropriately answered because you exercised faith by sending a gift that was more than you had in your bank.
When you see the prayer requests piled up in front of the “man of faith,” this is done on purpose for their TV program to prove the reaching effects of his ministry. He then utters a general public prayer over the thousands of requests to be answered and it’s over.
This is not how prayer is to be done. The motives of an intercessor are just as important as what we ask for. Our prayers are to specific and to be for an individual if possible.
Twice Jesus said, “Is it not written, My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations? But ye have made it a den of thieves.” Don’t let their spiritual props fool you.
Our prayers are to God and no other. We do not address unseen spirit beings and threaten them or fight against them to have God gain control over a certain area or person. If you’re speaking to the Devil in the atmosphere you are no longer praying to God.
We don’t want to become narcissistic, praying what I want to be, what I want to happen in my way. It should be God’s will and plans we are concerned about. Praying in Jesus name is not a warranty to receive anything we ask or say, and we can certainly thank him for that.
He doesn’t want spoiled little children, but mature heavenly minded people who look at His word and are willing to be conformed to His likeness even if it’s uncomfortable. Those who can trust Him in His decisions, He can entrust to answer.
If we petition God for riches, power, honor, knowledge, or reputation, for our self it is seeking our own kingdom. If we petition God for riches, power, honor, knowledge, or reputation, for his kingdom we need to have him search our hearts to know if our motives are pure. So how do we know how to pray and be on target? Charles H. Spurgeon stated it like this:
“Sometimes a fog will settle over a vessel’s deck and yet leave the topmast clear. Then a sailor goes up aloft and gets a lookout which the helmsman on deck cannot get. So prayer sends the soul aloft, lifts it above the clouds in which our selfishness and egotism befog us and give us a chance to see which way to steer.”
James 1:5-8 “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, without doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” So we ask in faith, meaning we believe he heard us and to trust his decision when and how to answer our prayer.
I John 5:14-15 “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
The power is not in our prayer no matter how earnest or eloquent it may be. The power rests in the one who answers the prayer and it is always according to what he wants to see accomplished. It may be through us or another but it rests in God’s hands.
W. R. Reynolds wrote: “The sovereignty of God does not override the want, the will, the tears, the cry of his children; but does, in the first instance, express itself through that very want — those tears and those strong desires. It is not that man changes God’s purpose, but that man verily and indeed discovers that purpose through his own earnest prayer.”
So how do we get our prayers answered? John 15:7-10: “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. “By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples. “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.”
We need to be walking with the Lord and seeking to do the things pleasing in his sight and he is more than willing to answer our requests. Not that we will ask for something for ourselves but if we are really and truly walking with him our prayer will be a dying to our self wants and lifting up to Him his kingdom wants.
Till next week,
Elder Dr. Robert L. Harrison