A Place of Prayer

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When we pray we may come to the Throne of Grace with holy boldness Hebrews ; but we must come with reverence, remembering to whom we are coming, aware of our unworthiness Daniel We must always come, however, with great humility. Prayer is meaningless if our hearts are not in it. We must not pray as the hypocrites do, like play-actors. Look up the very solemn words spoken by Jesus and recorded in Matthew How easy it is to engage in a form of prayer and yet for our hearts not to be in our praying!

How frequently we have done this! Verse 5 tells us how the Pharisees prayed — to be seen of men — but the Christian must meet God privately, secretly, unheard by men but seen and heard by Him, anywhere and at any time. We need to retire to a place alone in the presence of God and have an audience with Him. But what about verse 7? It is vain repetition which Jesus condemns. In prayer it is really unavoidable, and all the way through the Bible it is commended. We must persevere in prayer and be persistent; and such prayer demands repetition Luke ; ; Some of our prayers fall short of their goal because we give up just when we ought to hold on and persevere.

Compare Hebrews with the last part of Matthew We must believe that God is not only able and willing to answer us, but that He knows our needs before we ask Him. We do not pray to instruct God how to act, but to entreat Him that He may perform His will through our praying. Why then do we need to pray at all?

God has set the terms. If we do not pray, we will not get. If we pray a little, we will get a little. If we pray a lot, we will get a lot. What do you choose? Prayer needs to be in the Spirit. The Greek texts we have today have been put into small letters, but the original ones were all capitalized letters called uncials. They did not even have punctuation. We need to look at the context to know what he means. The Christian lives in a very spiritual world. All around him are spiritual things not seen with eye but perceived by faith.

In 1 Corinthians 2 it clearly states that prayer is a matter done through the Holy Spirit. Now we know that much prayer, if not most prayer, is not done in the Holy Spirit. Paul says this here to remind us to break away from the prayers of religious efforts which are mere chants, repetitions or pre-configured prayers. Instead we are interested in those prayers through which God exercises His will on earth through our lives.

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He is at once both communing with us as well as using us in our prayers to carry out what He is doing. Genuine prayer combines the work of the divine God stirring up our earthly hearts. He leads us to pray. Truly, the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

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In times when we do not know how to pray, the Spirit of God comes and gives us a prayer. Never fear to pray, only fear to pray without the Holy Spirit moving and motivating you. Each prayer was relevant to the situations that he was confronting rather than some repeated prayer. God does not care for professional prayers but only sincere prayers given in the name of Jesus. Prayer is the means by which we strengthen and help the lives of believers around us.

It is for this reason the church is so important. We hear of a need far away or nearby and we respond in prayer. We heard about a new brother Lak in India who needed money for a heart operation. As a church we responded with our prayers and donations. Praise God we now hear that the money is raised for him to have an operation. It is also for this reason that a prayerless church is an absolute embarrassment to any community or individual.

Never join a church which does not pray for it reveals in its practice that it does not really believe in God and prayer. Prayer is not ultimately about us but God and His people. Prayer forms a special card which we send to God, and He delights in viewing and doing what we ask Him. We sometimes want prayers to be answered in a flash, but He has His own purposes and timing. He says we must persevere.

Our prayers must stand firm. We must really care about those people and believe our prayers will make a difference. Most people do not pray because they do not really think prayer makes a difference.

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In such cases, God seems so powerless. People are not changed. Worship services go on as usual, but we do not see the great and mighty power of God at work. When people do pray, it is often for themselves. It is not wrong to pray for ourselves or even to ask others to pray for ourselves. We will see that in the next points. Focusing on our selves is a dead end street and in the end is a form of evil. We quickly note here that asking prayer for oneself is not wrong at all but good and right. The apostle greatly desired others to pray for him.

We also see, though, in contrast to selfish praying, that Paul was focused on the needs of others. Prayer is the main means we advance the kingdom of God. Paul himself, with all his experience, wisdom and gifts, having far more than any of us, asked for prayer. Perhaps he remembered how Peter fell because he did not pray.


A Place To Pray

The flesh is weak. We need the prayer of others to urge us onward. God has others who will pray. Where people pray, God actively works. Everything can change in a flash if we become a praying church. He has set before us the good works that He wants to accomplish through us Ephesians We must go from religious to real, from self-seeking to God-seeking.

Acts 16: A Place of Prayer

We might rightly ask ourselves if we really are a Christian, why cannot we find time or burden to shake the throne of God with our prayers? Why is there no passion in us? Why are we so worldly relying on wealth and education to get things done rather than through the mighty works of the Spirit of God? Why is there no passion in you? Why are we so worldly relying on wealth and education rather than the mightily works of the Spirit of God?

The Place of Prayer (SATB) - James Koerts, arr. Patricia Mock

Our brothers and sisters are on the distant mission fields. They need our prayers. Our pastors here need our prayers. If you are tempted to complain, are you there at their side as an unflinching prayer partner? Our prayers turn complaints into great feats of faith in prayer.

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But this is the negative side. What about the positive side? When we pray, those like the Apostle Paul gain more boldness! Those that minister will be more successful and strong. Because we prayed. God answered! We should never fall to the lie of the devil that makes those who are not clergy to be the watchers, viewers or entertained. Not at all.

We as the body follow the leading of the Head. I have been in ministry for more than 25 years and have made known our prayer requests to others. I believe that it is through these prayer requests that people can bring our needs up to God together.

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