This old world of ours is quite the mess these days. There are rumors of wars in the air. Society as a whole has decided that good is bad and bad is good and anyone that questions that is quite simply politically incorrect. At times it’s tempting for followers of Christ to just tune it all out and live in our own little spiritual cocoons.
Our calling however is not to ignore the plight of others. We need to do what we can to help when and who we can. This doesn’t mean enabling but assisting. We need to contribute to charities or activities that are a blessing to others that have less than we do. We are to reach out in tangible ways when we can and in ways that we are able. Most importantly, however, we are called to pray! Prayer DOES change things. It changes people, circumstances and brings God’s infinite wisdom into some pretty messed up situations. People can laugh and mock believers for their “blind faith” but as the saying goes, a person with an experience is never at the mercy of a person with an argument. I have seen first hand God move in my life and the lives of those around me in supernatural ways. This year alone I have seen God provide supernaturally in many ways…financially, in healing, with jobs and in answering heart cries from many people that have sought Him. Prayer is a precious gift from God Himself. As followers of Christ, we can go boldly before the throne of God and make our requests known. This is not done on our own merit, thankfully, but on the saving blood and redemption of Jesus. He has opened the door for us to the throne room!
There are a few things we need to be mindful of however, as we come before the throne of God in prayer. We are to confess our sin before God and ask for forgiveness through Christ. As shown in 2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV 14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
Sin should never keep us away from God, it should motivate us to ask for forgiveness and humbly come before Him. He will hear our prayers. We are also warned about coming to God in prayer with bitterness or resentment against someone. We need to confess and rid ourselves of bitterness and unforgiveness if we want Him to hear our prayer. Matthew 6:14-15 NIV 14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. This statement is very clear and doesn’t leave any wiggle room for holding onto bitterness. Sometimes it is only by an act of will that we are able to forgive, we may not feel it but we do it as an act of obedience knowing that we too need forgiveness for our own weaknesses and sins.
As we confess our own sins and forgive others of theirs against us, we are able to boldly come before God, through Christ. Hebrews 10:19-23 KJV says, 19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,20 By a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh;21 And having an high priest over the house of God;22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for He is faithful that promised). When God looks down at us He sees a child that has been washed in the blood of His precious Son and delights to hear our prayers. Through the blood of His Son we are given exclusive rights to come before Him and make our requests known.
We need to take advantage of this amazing opportunity God has provided for us. Instead of worrying and complaining, we need to be bringing our needs and the needs of others to Him and allowing Him to work in us and through us. He not only loves us but He wants us to come to Him with these needs.
Phillipians 4:5-7 NIV 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
1Peter 3:12 NIV 12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”
Matthew 7:7 NIV 7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
John sums things up beautifully in the following verse, 1John 5:14-15 NIV 14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him.
Spend more time talking to the “lover of your soul” and less time worrying and complaining about things. He longs to have the intimacy with you that prayer provides. Finally, don’t forget to thank Him for all the answers to your prayers!