Thursday, August 19, 2021

Surest Way to Not Get is to Not Pray

Surest Way to Not Get is to Not Pray!

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. JAMES 5:16 

A devout Scottish preacher named John Welsh used to kneel at his bedside and pray for the members of his church before retiring for the night. His wife was known to say, “Come to bed, John; it’s too cold.” His response to her was always the same: “But, dear, I have the souls of three thousand people to answer for, and I do not know how it is with many of them.” It is one thing to pray, but it is altogether another to pray without giving up until the answer to your prayers is received. Jesus taught the disciples a parable about a widow who wouldn’t give a judge any peace until she got what she needed. The lesson? That people “always ought to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1–8). He easily could have told them the story of Daniel who prayed for twenty-one days before he received an answer from heaven—an answer delayed by spiritual warfare in the heavenlies (Daniel 10:1–11:1). What if Daniel had given up praying after a week? After two weeks? No wonder God blessed Daniel with an understanding of mysteries revealed to no one else. If you are praying and waiting on an answer, don’t stop! The answer may be just another prayer away. The surest way not to get an answer to prayer is not to pray! - Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

C. H. Spurgeon was asked, "What is more important? Reading your Bible or Praying?"
His response? "What is more important? Breathing in or breathing out?"

James said it as it is.  For you and I, we have to move past the world's view of "good thoughts" and anything else about others.  They avail nothing. 

Your good thoughts stay in your head. 
Your good feelings about someone else stay with you. 

Your prayers, in the lives of believers in Christ Jesus, go straight to the Throne of God. 

The prayers of unbelievers can be heard by God. He hears all prayers. His chief concern is the salvation of the one praying, not the situation.  Jesus Himself said He came to seek and save the lost. His primary thing wasn't to be the world's healer.  Salvation is the priority. Salvation accepted or rejected determines Heaven or Hell as to where you will be next if you don’t get a next breath. Whether or not your illness, disease, broken bones or anything else is fixed or not, your soul isn't in that state, only your physical body. Your soul is tainted by sin. Your soul requires the free gift of Salvation to be set free by what only Jesus can supply. 

You, if you are a Christian, have a responsibility to pray. It's a fundamental part of "Be Holy as I am Holy". It's shown throughout the life of Christ as our example.  

We often don't pray because life is going too easy for us. Then when God does adjust our lives to make it less easy we have a choice to either return to prayer or to complain. 

The surest way to not get an answer to your prayers is not to pray in the first place. 
The second is to give up after a few times.
The third is to give up after once. 

The passage in Luke. Let's read it. 

Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not become discouraged, saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and did not respect any person. Now there was a widow in that city, and she kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me justice against my opponent.’ For a while he was unwilling; but later he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect any person, yet because this widow is bothering me, I will give her justice; otherwise by continually coming she will wear me out.’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unrighteous judge *said; now, will God not bring about justice for His elect who cry out to Him day and night, and will He delay long for them? I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?”

This is directly tied to two things.  One is exactly as it opens with. Jesus telling exactly why the parable was said. This was often not the case in public parables. Jesus told His Disciples that His lessons given in parables was for a reason, but for them He would explain their meaning. 

The second has to do with His Return. 

We live in that time.  His return is imminent. Can be any day. Without jumping ahead, as the Bible says, what manor of man ought we to be?

Finding faith when He returns. Think about what that means. The woman in the parable was in need of something. We live in a world so far removed from that, in our world of excessive plenty, it's difficult to honestly say we are in need!  Our world is so different than it was in Jesus’s day as we are from the world of fictional Star Trek.  People get irrational when they can't get 1 day or same day delivery. Get irate at delivery driver's who are a few minutes late. Our world of surplus can easily undermine people praying for things when they are immersed in things. 

Praying isn't always about things.  It's to also get your heart and mind in tune with God. 
Praying is part of what is necessary to learn from the Spirit of God. 
Praying is not meant to leave you as you are, but to bring you closer to Christ. 

Praying without ceasing is what we are commanded to do. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus." 

To the believers:  Look at your priorities in life.  Get honest with yourself. How much of your prayers are selfish wants and not needs? How fervent are you? Are you a quitter? Giving up after one or two times?  Do you put others before yourself in your prayers? Have you at all considered that the reason difficult times and difficult people are in your life is so that YOU may pray for them?

To those on the outside looking in at Christianity:  find out just where your good thoughts and desires can go. Come to Jesus and find salvation. Then give your worries and thoughts a direct. 

A worry is a prayer with no place to go. 

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