I don’t know about you, but one of the things that often stands in my way of praying, is that I don’t really know how. I don’t know the right things to say – I don’t feel quite worthy to “ask” for things. And sometimes it’s like — well it’s been so long, I’d probably…
The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com
Unless you have just escaped from the dark ages, I suspect you will know what is meant by FAQs. If not, please click here for an explanation.
Now, for some reason, in the early hours of the morning one day this week, the acronym floated into my mind and I began to wonder, if God had a certain set of questions that He frequently ponders and would love to ask us, as his children, as Christ’s followers, what would they be?
I came up with the following and hope they give you pause for thought.
- Where are you?
This is the question God asked Adam and Eve after they sinned and hid from his presence.
Now, I am not accusing anyone of sinning, so please don’t get uptight and click away!
What I am wanting to know is, does God have occasion to ask you the above question – Where are you?
Is he often waiting for you to come visit and fellowship with him, yet ends up being disappointed?
To be invited to come into the Holy of Holies, into God’s very throne-room, is a wonderful privilege and an honour. Are you regularly snubbing the one who has secured a free entrance ticket for you, at a very high price (the unimaginable suffering and death of his Son)?
Could you improve on your visitation periods?
- Where are my Elijahs?
Are you concerned about the moral and spiritual decline of this world? Yes?
Then what are you doing about it?
“Me?” you ask. “What do you expect me to do about it?”
It’s not what I expect you to do dear reader, it’s about what God expects you to do.
In 2 Chronicles 7:14 he says this:
If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Again, in the book of James, we read that the “effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” Elijah is given as an example of someone with an effective prayer life (see James 5:16b-17).
Will you be an Elijah?
- Can I count of you?
So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but found no one.
(Ezekiel 22:30 NKJV)
Remember Abraham? He had such a great relationship with God that the Lord felt he could not destroy Sodom & Gomorrah without telling him first. It may have been because He knew Abraham’s nephew Lot, was living there. Once Abraham became aware of God’s plan, he sought to dissuade God by asking him to preserve the nation if there were at least 10 righteous people within it.
I believe if Abraham had continued negotiating and asked God to spare this wicked nation for just one righteous individual (Lot), God would have done so.
Abraham was not only deemed to be a friend of God but he is also considered to be our forefather of faith. As his offspring, are you prepared to emulate him and stand in the gap for others, who are in need of God’s grace and mercy?
- Are you prepared to trust me in the long haul?
The above question refers to a parable Jesus told, encouraging his followers that they should always pray and not give up. The parable is about a widow who seeks the intervention of an unjust judge. This man had no regard for God, nor did he care about the woman’s plight. However, because of her persistence, he eventually gave in and granted her the justice she sought. If you are not familiar with this story, you may read about it in Luke 18:1-8.
I wonder, when Jesus shared this parable, was he concerned that people gave up too easily? Is there a prayer request you have abandoned because God has not answered it within your required deadline?
Do you have confidence in God’s Word, or are you lacking in persistent faith?
- Do you believe that I love you and have your best interests as a primary concern upon my heart?
I am sure you have experienced disappointments in life. In fact, I’m positive there are things which have happened to you that do not reflect the abundant or victorious lifestyle you’d expected to enjoy, as a born-again Christian.
How do you feel about these instances? Do you harbour fears that God has abandoned you, or does not care?
Listen to what he has to say to you from his Word:
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, who are the called according to his purpose.
(Roman 8:28 NKJV)
Joseph found himself in prison on a charge of rape, even though he was innocent. He would never have landed up there in the first place, if it were not for the malice of his own brothers, who sold him into slavery. And all this happened, despite God revealing to Joseph that his destiny was to be a prominent leader.
We know that all ended well, not just for Joseph but for his entire family and for his host country, Egypt, when a severe famine hit the land. This, and other similar stories in the Bible should encourage us that God is able to cause all things to work together for our good.
Do you feel forgotten? If so, ignore your feelings and trust God’s Word.
Commit your concerns into our heavenly Father’s hands. Trust Him to work out his purpose for your benefit and for the blessing of others around you.
Commit (in other words pray).
And then rest!
Carol (aka Lady Cee)
Author of: Petitions From My Heart
Did you enjoy reading this post? If so, please share your thoughts in a comment box below. Do you know someone who would benefit from its message? Then please don’t hesitate to share it. Thank you.
Sunday’s Supplications (4)
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men
(1 Timothy 2:1 NKJV)
Who did you pray for today?
Who did you pray for last week?
Who do you pray for regularly?
Do you enjoy a dynamic, effective and ongoing prayer life?
Sunday Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each week, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
A specific purpose:
The aim of this feature is to:
- encourage you to pray regularly
- increase your confidence in prayer and
- develop a praying community.
In Matthew 6:5-6, Jesus did not say “…if you pray” but “when you pray…”. To my mind, this means he expected his followers to pray.
I’m aware that there are all sorts of misunderstandings and misconceptions about prayer. I’m hoping this feature will help to dispel any myths you may entertain regarding this spiritual exercise. I’m hoping to motivate people to pray regularly and demonstrate how natural the act of prayer is, and how vital it is to our relationship with God and to fulfilling our responsibility to fellow members of His family.
A call to commitment:
Now commitment phobes, please don’t run scared. I am challenging myself and other Christian believers to step-up the quality of their prayer lives. As the saying goes: “two is better than one”. So think how much more effective, how much more supportive a prayer network (particularly a global prayer network) will be.
I can understand any reluctance to commit, or concern about letting anyone down. So here’s the deal. If you do decide to engage with this initiative, if you do decide to upgrade your prayer life, your decision can be between you and God alone—unless of course you choose to go public and share with the WoW community! But dear believer, I am asking you to make that commitment – a commitment to honour Christ’s expectation of his followers, a commitment to obey Paul’s direction in Ephesians 6:18, a commitment to pray.
You may sometimes fail to follow through. You may often find that you lack discipline, or the inclination. Your Father-God understands. In fact, the Word of God records Jesus as saying: “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”. So whilst you are forming, or renewing, or increasing your prayer habit, commit to whatever you feel comfortable with— a week at a time, a month, 6 months, or a year. Renew your commitment as and when you like. It is entirely up to you. I will not be holding anyone to account.
A spiritual gauntlet
Are you new to praying regularly?
Does your prayer life lack consistency, or authority and fervour?
Then I’m throwing down a spiritual gauntlet. I’m challenging you to do something about it NOW!
Don’t feel intimidated or overwhelmed. Tackle this prayer undertaking one step at a time. You don’t even have to find your own words, if that worries you. Simply pray the prepared prayer provided. I only ask that you pray it daily or weekly—not out of a sense of duty, not as an empty exercise, but with fervent sincerity.
By doing so, I believe your prayer life will change. By doing so, I believe your confidence in God will increase. By doing so, I believe your spiritual life and authority will move up a notch or two because obedience to God brings rich rewards.
Potential prayer warriors and interns, welcome aboard. Let’s build a vibrant praying community together.
One last thing, don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield!
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
Can we forget our natural inclinations to care only about me, myself and mine?
Can we pay heed to Paul’s instruction to Timothy and begin to pray for all men? I’m sure I don’t have to remind you that this reference includes women and children also! The more people that participate, the wider the coverage and the greater the impact.
This week, let’s focus on the men, women and children of our neighbourhoods, of our church communities, of our nations.
May God motivate his people all over this world to offer heartfelt supplications on behalf of others around them, and may he use these petitions to effect miraculous changes within the hearts and lives of individuals, including ourselves.
Lord God Almighty,
Even though you are sovereign, even though you possess all power and might, even though you have revealed your will for all men to enjoy an abundant life, perpetual peace and spiritual well-being, you have given us a free-will.
Father God, we are sorry for the times we have exercised our will contrary to your ways. We are sorry that in doing so, we have made a mess of our lives and of our world. We are sorry and we admit that we cannot conduct our lives appropriately, or guide ourselves onto the paths of our pre-ordained destiny, without your help. We ask that you come and take control. We invite you to come and bring order to our homes, to our communities, to our nations. We ask that you heal this world.
Come and change the hearts of men, women and children that are ignorant of, or antagonistic towards your holy Word, your wholesome ways and your perfect will. Lord God, touch the lives of your people whom you have called into your kingdom. Enlighten the eyes of our understanding and empower us to serve you and one another with unfeigned love and devotion.
Father God, we commit this appeal into your capable hands. We believe that there is nothing too difficult for you to do. We believe you have heard our prayers and therefore thank you for granting our requests. Amen.
© Carol Hind
Women of Warfare followers and visitors, have a wonderful and peace-filled week.
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Now there’s absolutely no obligation to do so but if you are committing to upgrade your prayer life, if you have prayed the above prayer (or any of the Sunday Supplication prayers), please let me know in the comment box below. Thank you.
CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Marcia bispo Bença at Pixabay.com