Relationship with God
Prayer can mean so mean so many different things to different people. Unfortunately, most people think it is just asking God for stuff. It is so much more! If we understand prayer correctly and employ its use, it is the lifeline to a genuine and vibrant relationship with God.
Prayer is personal. It is the honest cry of the heart. God knows everything. He is omniscient. It is a waste of heart and time to try to cover up true feelings. God knows them anyway! We can be honest about our ministries, friends, spouse, and our congregations. God cares and does indeed empathize with us. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin. Heb 4;15
Prayer is real dialogue; real talk between you and God. Recited prayers are often very lovely and beautiful, but they are the cry of another man’s heart. God cares what is going on in your heart, not someone else’s. And He wants to talk back. Prayer is a dialogue. You talk and God listens. But wait for the answer. Listen with your heart as well as your mind as God speaks back to you through the Holy Spirit and His written word. Don’t rush the dialogue. It takes time. Do you rush through your personal time with your spouse or a cherished friend? If you do then your personal relationship will suffer. The same is true with God. Take the time to listen for God’s responses to your concerns and requests. God does speak! He spoke to Adam and Eve, Abraham, Moses, Job, David, Gideon, Deborah, and on and on and on. He continues to speak to men’s heart today!
Prayer is always answered. The answer will either be Yes, No or Wait. We can trust God to answer in a way that will be best for us. You can trust God hears you and that His answer will work out for the best, even if it is not the way you planned.
1 Chronicles 5:20 He answered their prayers because they trusted in Him. The Psalmist wrote in Psalm 150:1- I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.
Prayer requires a yearning or a hunger for the presence of God. Faith that pleases God is this: Hebrews 11:6…anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Yearning for God is a form of worship. God requires worship as we come into His presence. Psalm 100 reads: I will enter His gates with Thanksgiving in my heart. I will enter His courts with praise. When we yearn for God it shows we revere, desire and adore Him.
Prayer is energizing. When we enter God’s presence he pours His Holy Spirit upon us. The Holy Spirit empowers and energizes us with His supernatural power. We become bold, eager to act and step out in faith to serve Him. God assures us He will fill us with His power. Pray in the Spirit and you will receive the power you need. I believe that if you are not stronger after you pray than there is a misunderstanding somewhere. Jude (1:20) tells us to pray in the Holy Spirit so our faith can be built up. Further the book of Ephesians 6:18 reminds us,
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
Prayer is the essence of our relationship with God. With prayer we are in God’s presence and we have God’s favor and blessing. Without prayer, we are alone and working in our own strength. This is why the scripture admonishes us to Pray without ceasing in 1Thess 5:17. We can all attest to times when we neglected to pray and we were weak; we made the wrong decisions and we were ineffective in our ministries- ministries to our spouse, children or congregations. Prayer is the lifeline to God and His work in our lives!