Tag Archives: prayer

God answers His people

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This is where we live.

Like other places it has a story.

One of my favorite stories is about a Circuit Riding Preacher who felt called to settle in this valley.

His name was John Standley.

My husband and I were asked to be the directors of our yearly children’s camp.

My husband prayed and felt led to theme it around the Circuit Riding Preachers.

We are using Elisha’s life to teach important points.

This being the weekend for camp I’ve been very busy with details.

At one point I found we were short two counselors.

Since I had only 3 days to fill the positions I was feeling anxious.

I prayed.

God reminded me of all the things He is able to do.

He reminded me of His recent help.

The week before our daughter’s wedding our main dish was suddenly unavailable.

I went to prayer because with 200 people invited I wasn’t sure what to do next.

God came through and we had delicious Tri-tip.

I knew He could fill the counselors.

After praying I made two calls and had both positions filled.

Tuesday I found our transportation to get the kids to camp had fallen through.

I spent most of the day praying.

I asked others to pray.

God answered.

By mid afternoon we had transportation.

Today is setup and tomorrow is camp.

I went to bed early last night with a headache.

This morning I feel worse.

I’m praying.

I know God has an answer.

It may not be the one I want to hear, but I know that God answers His people.

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LORD, how do I pray?

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This is a question not original with me.

The disciples asked Jesus the very same question.

Yet there are many answers to this question as one looks through scripture.

Jesus gave the disciples this prayer:
“Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come.  Your will be done,  as in heaven, so in earth. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation;  but deliver us from evil.” Luke 11:1

In other places in scripture we find our hearts can hinder our prayers.

There are prayers recorded which we can study and glean from.

Even so God makes it clear the words of a prayer are not the key, it is the heart of the person.

The thief on the cross next to Jesus didn’t use flowery words or special phrases or even eloquent speech yet Jesus said his request would be answered that very day.

Since the heart is so important I’m continually asking the Lord to make right those things which are wrong in my own.

But I don’t stop there.

Recently I’ve been bringing items to the Lord and asking,  “LORD, how would You have me pray?”

It used to be a concern would come and I would take it to the Lord.

“Father, our child is struggling in this subject. Please help them get their grades up. Please give them courage to keep trying…”

Now I’ve changed.

“Father,  how should I pray for our child? They are really struggling in this subject? ”

Then I listen for an answer and pray accordingly.

It has been a new place to learn and walk.

I’m certain it is not the last lesson I will have in prayer.

Because prayer is a relationship with the God of the Universe, not a formula or equation.

Since He is the Creator of all things I’m certain He understands just how
it was originally meant to work.

So as I pray for the list of concerns today, I want to be attached to the will of God.

What better way is there than to ask Him daily:
“Lord, how do I pray?”

Prayers answered

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Prayer…

Does it work?

“These last few prayer requests I have given you all were kind of a test.”

The woman sitting in the Ladies’ Bible study confessed.

“I really didn’t expect anything when I asked you to pray. I just wanted to see if prayer actually works. ”

Smiling, the Women’s leader responded.

“Well, praise the Lord! Your prayers have been answered and your faith has been strengthen. ”

The women had all been able to witness: prayer works.

Yet how often do prayers get answered?

How many people would declare:
“It’s a waste of time,” ?

It’s not a new question.

James wrote about unanswered prayer in the New Testament.

“You ask and do not receive,  because you ask amiss,…” 4:3a

James was explaining to the church the reason prayers were seemingly unanswered; the requests were off.

Think of a child nearing Christmas.

His little eyes beheld an amazing commercial about a certain toy and he begins to request that for his gift.

His father’s eyebrows furrow, because the toy is not a suitable gift for a child his age.

When Christmas morning comes the gift selected by his father for him is far more age appropriate,  more fit to his skills, and deeply loved.

The same is true for each of us.

Our Father in heaven has a much fuller, clearer understanding of what we need to become who He has created us to be, and therefore the answers to prayers are at times not what we request.

Yet prayer is powerful.

“The prayer of a righteous man avails much.” James 5:16

In the book of Daniel, we see God sending an angel to answer Daniel’s prayer. Dan.10:12

Jesus prayed, often. Mt. 26:36,39,42,44; Mrk. 1:35, 6:46; Lk. 3:21, 6:12, 9:28, 11: 1

Before Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead He prayed aloud to help all those nearby understand it was God the Father who had sent Him to do it. Jn. 11:41-42

In Revelation it speaks of the prayers of the Saints as being incense before the Lord.  Rev. 5:8, 8:4

And we have proof of the power of prayer even today.

There are many amazing biographies of missionaries who have recorded the power of prayer in their lives.

There are pastors and teachers on the radio who will testify of the power of prayer.

If all of this seems for “others” or simply unbelievable in your life today ask the Lord why?

Because the Bible tells us to pray and proves,
it works!

Prayer

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What is it?

How does one pray ?

Does it work?

Why is it important?

First,
prayer is communication with God through the Holy Spirit.

Too often prayers are sent as if the person who is praying has no idea who they are talking to,  but they hope to be heard and granted their request.

If you write a letter and place it in an envelope with no address, you can be certain it won’t leave your mailbox.

God has placed in every heart a knowledge of something higher than humanity.

It is clear when one looks at the history of mankind, man is always finding something to worship, because in every heart there is a God size whole yearning to worship.

The Bible tells us that we should know and understand God and in our prayers and recognize who we are speaking with.

God tells Abraham about Himself. Gen. 17:1

He tells Moses about Himself. Ex. 10:2

And Jesus told us about God in ways the world had before never grasped. Matt. 5:1-16, Matt. 6:5-15, Matt. 7:21-24

When in prayer God wants to be addressed.

Jesus said: “In this manner,  therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven,  Hallowed be Your name.” Matt. 6:9

He is holy and merciful.

He is just and loving.

He is good and kind.

When praying, stop and recognize the same God who created the entire universe is listening to your heart and cares so much for you that nothing is too “small” to bring to Him in prayer.

But remember,
this is a conversation,
look for ways He is responding,
whether it’s in the Word,
or in yourself and your perspective,
or in the circumstances of the day,
He wants you to hear Him.

So stop.

Take some time.

Make a list,
of who God says He is,
of what things He has already done in your life,
and thank Him.

Use the list as a spring board to prayer.

The Psalms show us that David often spent his time in prayer simply reflecting on who God is and what He had done.

“O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
So I have looked for You
in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.
Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Thus I will bless You while I live;”
Ps 63: 1-4a

From these verses David speaks of God’s power, glory, and loving kindness.

David shares of his need for God, comparing it to thirst.

So as you pray,
think of the Addressee.

Remember to thank Him for at least one thing He has given,  even if it as simple as “thanks for the breathe to pray”.

Because He wants a relationship with you.

What better way to begin than with time invested in conversation?

Prayer

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It seems too easy,
yet
complicated.

PRAYER

Something bigger than talking,
yet
as intimate as conversation between two individuals in love.

The Bible makes it clear, God loves us and wants us to spend time in prayer.

The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray, understanding it was an important part of their lives.

As our pastor recently pointed out,
prayer is more than supplication.

Never feel foolish when taking needs to God, He wants to discuss these with us.

However there is more.

Praying on behalf of another,  like Jesus prayed for Peter, is vital.

Intercession builds love in the heart of the person praying and it works.

Many stories of people being saved from destruction or harm have been linked to prayers of others on their behalf.

God wants us to cover each other in prayer.

To bless those dear to us without forgetting to ask on behalf of the people over us: pastors, community leaders, judges, bosses, president…

Prayer is even more than these two things.

Talking with God means communication is running both ways.

Thanks and praise for all God has done,  given,  provided.

Heartfelt joy at building a relationship with the Creator of the universe, not unlike too people who are in love.

And yet prayer is deeper still.

Let nothing hinder your prayers.

Whether it be schedules or sin or bitterness, choose to make a change.

Because prayer is important, powerful,
vital.