Jesus modeled a lifestyle of prayer for us, as shown in the Gospels. Even though He was Lord and possessed all dominion and authority, while on Earth He had to operate according to the laws set forth by God for all humans (see Gen. 1:26-27; John 10:1-2). Even Jesus had to ask the Father for the things He needed on Earth.
God Himself declared in the book of Psalms: “‘Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for Your possession” (Ps. 2:8, NKJV).
It is true, even Jesus had to pray: “‘And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever’” (John 14:16). If He had to approach His Father in prayer, then surely we can understand His instruction to us: “‘So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened’”(Luke11:9-10, emphasis added).
Jesus’ instruction in Luke 11 not only reminds us of our need to spend time with the Father in prayer, but it also tells us of the Father’s response when we do pray. He will listen! He will open the door! He will provide!
Remember the words of James: “You do not have because you do not ask” (James 4:2). I don’t know who came up with the idea that God doesn’t answer prayer. All I see in the Scriptures is the God whom Jesus described in Mark 11:22-24. “‘Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, “Be removed and be cast into the sea,” and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.’”
God longs for us to rediscover the power of that old-fashioned “sweet hour of prayer.” A brief prayer mumbled somewhere between the on-ramp of the freeway and the fast-food window on the way to work is not enough! That is not characteristic of a prayer life based on a vibrant relationship with a living God. It is the fulfillment of an obligation—and a half-hearted fulfillment at that. Such “prayer” can never fill the longing of either the Father’s heart or your own.
Jesus still calls out to believers just as He called to the slumbering disciples in the Garden of Gethsemane: “‘What! Could you not watch with Me one hour?’” (Matt. 26:40).
I hear another voice, the voice of Andrew Murray. Hear him as he too calls us to drink from the well of fervent prayer: “[This] is the secret of the life of prayer. Take time in the inner chamber to bow down and worship; and wait on Him till He unveils Himself, and takes possession of you, and goes out with you to show how a man may live and walk in abiding fellowship with an unseen Lord.”
Why do we believe we can live the victorious Christian life without prayer when even the Son of God needed times of fervent prayer just to go from day to day? No preacher is fit to speak to God’s people until he has first paid the price in prayer to hear the heart of the Father concerning His people. No Christian can claim to be fully equipped and prepared to live for Christ until he or she first pays the price to seek His face and surrender all to Him.
If you want to grow in your faith, receive powerful answers to your prayers and live as an overcoming victorious Christian, schedule time to privately meet with God to pray and be sure to keep the appointment.
Adapted from Ancient Wells—Living Waters by Rod Parsley, published by Charisma House. This book will take you back to truths that will help you get through life’s challenges and disappointments, and bring a fresh sense of God’s favor and blessing. If you thirst for God’s refreshing waters of power, presence and provision, this book is for you. To order a copy click on this link:
PRAYER POWER FOR THE WEEK OF 6-25-2012
Make personal and corporate prayer a priority this week and ask God to direct your focus to His agenda. Pray for believers to unite in prayer and purpose to usher in revival, and expand God’s kingdom. Pray for our government leaders as they make decisions affecting our nation and the entire world. Pray for the stock markets and economic systems, our national security, military, and the upcoming elections. Pray God’s will for Israel. Ask God to direct you to vote for those of His choosing. John 17: 11-22; James 5:16; 2 Chron. 7:14
To enrich your prayer life and learn how to strategically pray with power by using appropriate scriptures, we recommend the following sources by Apostle John Eckhardt: Prayers that Rout Demons, Prayers that Bring Healing, Prayers that Release Heaven on Earth and Prayers that Break Curses. To order any or all of these click here.
For a limited time, we are extending our celebration of the 40th anniversary of Charisma. As a special offer, you can get 40 issues of Charisma magazine for only $40!