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knowing God

Why I Love Prayer – Part 2

Why I Love Prayer- Part 2

I love life!  I really do!  For the most part, I find myself to be a very happy person.  I’m clearly an optimist, and always have been.  My (step)mother actually pointed this out to me when I was quite young, “you’re what they call a ‘Pollyanna’ person”, she said.  Of course I was like “huh?”, and she explained it to me.  If you look it up, the definition is: an excessively or blindly optimistic person (see here).  Some people would see that as a criticism, but fortunately for me, my Mom seemed to paint the picture that this was a great thing to be, and I have always considered this a great gift of mine.  I see the good in nearly everything.  I like to see the good.  I prefer to give little attention to the ‘bad’.  I would even say that this has a lot to do with faith (see Hebrews 11:1).    

But, I have a confession to make.  I’m actually not satisfied at all with things as they are.

I find myself very often wishing that things were different, on pretty much every level.  To put it plainly, I don’t really like the way things are, and I wish they would change… 

Or, maybe I just see the good that could be, and I’m frustrated that it has not appeared yet. 

I long for my heart to be pure and more devoted to the Lord.

I long for my life and ministry to have a profound impact, to truly make a difference in Eternity.

I want to be the best husband and father that ever lived.

I want to love people deeply, purely, honestly, demonstratively, the way Jesus does.

I want every person I know to know Jesus personally.

I desire the Church to be mature, measuring up the fullness of Christ.

I desire to see a great Awakening yet again in our nation, particularly on college campuses.

I’m looking for the Kingdom of God to come on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Yes, I set my sights high.

I haven’t seen any of these things come to pass yet, but I’m convinced that they can, even more so, that they will.  The unfortunate part of the equation is that I have very little power, if any, to make any of those things happen!  I can’t do it!

But, I refuse to give up.  So, where do I go?

I go to the One who DOES have all power.  I seek the One who can do anything.  I speak to the Lord of Heaven and Earth and make my requests, believing that He will answer me with love and faithfulness.  My voice moves Him. 

I do my part – pray; talk to God; tell Him what He already knows; remind Him of His promises; declare my love and desire for Him to manifest His power (in whatever situation I’m longing to see change in).

Then, He does His part! 

He know what we need before we ask,

YET, he tells us to ASK!!  It’s about relationship, yes.  It’s about PRAYER.

He LOVES when we come to Him.  He LOVES when we ask of Him.  He LOVES to ANSWER us and grant our requests!!! 

Prayer is God’s chosen transaction method for change.  God gets what He wants = us, talking to Him, relating to Him.  In return, we get what we want = answer to prayer.  More importantly, we get what we need = nearness to God!  It’s amazing!   

When we pray, God acts, and things happen.  Conversely, if we don’t pray, nothing happens, nothing changes.  For real!  There are things in God’s heart that He wants to do, but He will withhold the blessing until we pray! 

Many people believe that because God is sovereign (and He is), He will do what He wants to do, regardless of whether we choose to agree with Him or not.  WRONG!  God has chosen to join Himself with humanity, and has limited (some) of His power because He desires partnership with us – that we would bring our hearts into agreement with His; that we would learn what He wants, and desire what He desires, and then ASK Him.  If we can put ourselves in the place, the guaranteed answer is YES!  He wants to do it, He’s just waiting for us to ask. 

The ultimate picture of this is Jesus Himself.  He is God, He is man, completely.  He is a perfect partnership of the two in One person.  And, He’s praying!!  He’s asking the Father for things that He knows the Father wants to do, and the Father says, “YES! YES! YES!” with a huge smile on His face, because He really enjoys this process!  

Check it out from Jesus’ teaching on prayer in Matthew 6:

“7  when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

 9″This, then, is how you should pray:

   ” ‘Our Father in heaven “  

Jesus tells us that our Father already knows what they need, and then proceeds to teach us how to pray/ask God for what they need, and the clear implication is that He will give it when we ask!

Then, a little later in the same sermon, Jesus says:

7″Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

 9″Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

The clear implication here is that if we don’t seek, we WON’T find; the good things come, when we actually ASK God. 

James 4:2 . . you do not have, because you do not ask God

Now, there are many things that may come to your mind during the day, which you don’t like, and where you wish for a change – perhaps “big” things like the government, economy, etc.  Perhaps its “smaller” things, like your job or a strained relationship.  We spend a lot of mental energy grumbling to ourselves and wishing for something different.  Sometimes we even tell ourselves that these musings are prayer, and would tell another “I’ve really been praying about that.“  But, wait.  Did you really stop to talk to God about it?  Did you turn your dissatisfaction into an asking before our Loving Father at His Throne?  Don’t fool yourself and then wonder “why isn’t God answering me?” if you didn’t really pray about it, with your mouth, out loud to Him. 

There’s a completely different dynamic that happens when actually take the energy to turn those thoughts into prayer.  It changes you.  And, yes, it will change your situation. 

That’s why I love prayer!  It works!  God always answers us when we truly call out to Him with a sincere heart!!  I could begin to list numerous things that I have sen change in direct response to prayer, but, this post is already quite long.

I love prayer, because it works.

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About Jessie

Lover of God. Husband. Dad. Director of the Furnace at Michigan State University.

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