I pray. Do you pray? Many around the world pray to God or a god. Some know what they’re doing while others do it because they’re told to do it. In fact, some religions mandate their follower’s adherence to prayer i.e. so many times a day, posture, place etc! That being said, what is prayer? The dictionary defines prayer as:
These are all good definitions however; something is missing from the list. Prayer is a legal binder that’s supported by a promise. In other words, prayer is a legal petition that’s presented to the Court of Heaven to address a specific issue or thing. This legal binder is supported by the promise that God hears us when we pray according to His will. So, in order to have our prayers answered we must first know what the will of God is and pray accordingly (1 John 5:14). And how can we know the will of God? We know based on our individual study of His Word; the Bible. He revealed His will through Scripture. All we need to do is study it as it pertains to a particular issue or thing. I’ll make myself clearer as we go along.
Someone might say, “That’s too easy!” I would respond: IT IS EASY! In this blog series I want to break down the 6 Keys to Effective Prayer. I believe it will be helpful to know how to not only pray, but benefit from our prayers.
As a young boy I would hear my Dad (Pastor) tell everyone he counseled or ministered to; to pray about their situations. Most of them would say that’s what they had been doing, but it didn’t seem that God heard their prayers. That made me curious to know why God (Who sees everything) didn’t seem to answer them. Come to think of it, I never heard my Dad say God didn’t answer him. What made him any different than them? Hmmm!
I had to go to the Bible on that one. So I did and to my surprise, I found that there was a fascinating truth concerning prayers that God answers as opposed to those He doesn’t. First, let’s get something straight. God is Sovereign over all and everything. He is not a genie in a bottle. You don’t rub your Bible and get three wishes! He’s also not an invisible Santa. He is God; the Ruler and Creator of all things! No one or nothing is greater the He is.
The next thing to get straight is there is nothing impossible to God (Luke 1:37)! ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Or He wouldn’t be God. By definition God is ALL powerful, ALL knowing, OMNIPRESENT; the ALMIGHTY! Wait! Imagine going to God for some matter and He tells you, “That’s a tough one. I can’t do that one!” We would be like, are you God or an imposter? So, our confidence is in the Person we are praying to and His ability to do what He promised He would do; hear us according to His will. That being said, Hebrews 11:6 states:
And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that God exists and that He rewards those who sincerely seek Him.
The first key to effective prayer is having confidence that God rewards those who sincerely seek Him. Faith is sincere confidence. A lack of confidence He can do, and will do greatly displeases Him. To me, this is important because it establishes the notion of having a relationship with God. For instance, outside of a few circumstances you or I wouldn’t go to someone we don’t know for help. I’m not talking about an agency or some established entity. I’m talking about a person. We wouldn’t go to another person for help unless there was some kind of relationship. That’s what the above Scripture is saying. We must believe God exists as a precursor to praying to Him.
To recap our first key to answered prayer:
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. We will pick up where we left off next time as we review the second key to effective prayer. God willing be blessed!