Archives For Prayer

photoI made my morning coffee and was already outside enjoying the cool morning air, a little thick with humidity (September in Arkansas). Dawn hadn’t made it yet. I called the children by name and prayed for God’s protection and guidance – all the typical and regular parental things prayed. It’s my morning routine – some time in the Word with scripture, meditation, prayer, conversation with Dawn and always a good cup of coffee.

This morning as I prayed over my children, I had a moment where I felt a little sorry for myself. I thought, I wish I had someone who was awake before I am praying for my day and what I’ll encounter the way I do for my children. And the next thought was my sweet parents and other loved ones who have “passed through the veil” and the particular memory of my mother’s prayers for me when she was alive. When she was alive? That’s when it hit me. She IS alive and she’s still praying for me, along with a “great cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1) of which you (the reader) probably have someone there right now praying for you. And then, the hammer of the Word dropped – as thankful as I am for my Momma’s prayers and those of other loved ones, there is One whose prayers are the most meaningful. And I remembered this verse . . .

“Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him,
since he always lives to make intercession for them.” (Hebrews 7:25 ESV)

And I repented of my momentary “self-pity” as I thanked God for Jesus and the prayers HE IS PRAYING for me and then remembered this quote. . . .

“If I could hear Christ praying for me in the next room, I would not fear a million
enemies. Yet distance makes no difference. He is praying for me.” ~ Robert Murray McCheyne

And then my eyes welled up with tears of joy and I shouted as the Holy Spirit brought
this last one to mind. . .

“Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is
at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” (Romans 8:34 ESV)

Wow! I’m corrected in my short-sighted thinking that produced a moment of self-pity and now I’m injected with fresh faith remembering how great Jesus is and the fact that He was praying for me and the day I would encounter while I was yet asleep. And He is praying for you. Don’t fear a million enemies! He’s with you!

Big Bodacious Prayers

January 28, 2010 — 1 Comment

“And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.  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.”

1 John 5:14-15

There’s your lifetime warranty.  We have “confidence” because God’s Word is true.  It will not return to Him empty. (Isa. 55:11)  His promises are sure.  Don’t let the ‘according to his will’ phrase throw you either because you have a copy of His will – it’s called The Bible. It’s His revealed will.  Read it to grow and understand your walk with Him.  Pray according to it and your confidence in His Word will grow.  1 Peter 3:12a says, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are open to their prayer.” Pray today in confidence!

“. . . since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.”

1 Peter 3:7b

We’ve learned the importance of praying in faith.  However, there are other things that can hinder our prayers.  Strife in our relationships can stop our prayers from being answered.  Humility and unity aren’t just critical for good relationships between people – but God cares about them even more.  Some people thrive on drama and strife and then can’t understand why they don’t feel close to God or can’t get their prayers answered.  Psalm 66:18 says, “If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.” Repentance should be our first prayer.  This opens God’s ears to the rest.

“. . . whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”                  Mark 11:24 (ESV)

Right before this, Jesus says that having faith in God means that you can speak to a mountain and it will be cast into the sea if you believe what you ask and do not doubt in your heart.  Honestly, contrary to the popular adage, “prayer alone doesn’t change anything.”  Millions of prayers have been recited today to multitudes of false gods.  They will go unanswered.  A whole lot of others have been prayed to the one true God, yet in vain – because they weren’t prayed in faith believing that God would honor His Word. When we pray, we must pray in faith.  Faith means I trust in God’s ability and God’s willingness.  He can.  He will.  Trust Him!

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”

Philippians 4:6 (ESV)

A pastor friend of mine recently joked, “My worrying must be working, because 95% of the things I worry about never happen.”  I’m convinced that if God’s people would practice this verse and decide to not worry (be anxious) about anything, but pray about everything, then our lives would be totally different.  Pray about it all – large and small.  Do it with an attitude of gratitude.  Prayers, supplications and requests are all different kinds of prayer that all should be offered up in a spirit of thanksgiving.  What are you thankful for today?

No Wrestling Required

January 12, 2010 — Leave a comment

“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?”

Matthew 7:11 (ESV)

People who are bound in religion and haven’t truly known Jesus in relationship see prayer as a chore.  It’s a job that must be done in order to convince the Almighty either through begging or ‘vain repetition’ why He should do something for us.  It’s unfortunate how some are bound in a kind of striving mode like they have to wrestle something out of God’s hands.   Jesus deals with the simplicity of this beautiful relationship language called prayer in Matthew 7 by reminding the people that they know how to give good gifts to their children – how much more does your Heavenly Father?  Just ask!

“Ask, and it will be given to you. . . for everyone who asks receives.”

Matthew 7:7a, 8a (ESV)

It really is that simple, but religion has made it hard.  It should be like a normal conversation – like you’re talking to your friend.  I talk to God just like I talk to those with which I am in relationship.  I don’t use “churchy” language.  God isn’t impressed with my theological knowledge or ability to use “Thees” and “Thous” – pretentious nonsense.  Nobody talks that way today.  What makes you think God wants to hear it?  Some don’t pray because they say they don’t know how.   Just be yourself and open your heart to Him.  That’s what it’s all about with Him anyway.  He wants you to get to know Him and spend time talking to Him.  He’s waiting on you right now.