John 8:36 - So if the Son makes you free, you will be truly free.

Galatians 5:1 - We have freedom now, because Christ made us free. So stand strong. Do not change and go back into the slavery of the law.

This is my journey.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Steadfast In Prayer

Therefore, I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it shall be done for you. And when you stand to pray, forgive whatever you may hold against anyone, so that your heavenly Father may also forgive your sins. Mark 11:24-26

The more books I read about it, the more I spend time praying, the more I realize I need to pray! I am hoping to personally build up to at least 3-4 hours of prayer daily. Still currently working on 1 hour daily.

Pray at all times as the Spirit inspires you. Keep watch, together with sustained prayer and supplication for all the holy ones. Ephesians 6:18

I have always been really bad with procrastination and self-discipline, especially in this area. I will do really well for a few weeks or months, then will begin slacking off and grow stale for a (sometimes very long) while.

Be steadfast in prayer and even spend the night praying and giving thanks. Colossians 4:2

It's time to change the way I do prayer. With quite a few large changes and events coming up in the next year (and all needing much prayer!), I figure now is the optimum time.

For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

It is time to become the prayer warrior that God has called me to be, no longer wallowing in mediocrity, but stepping out in faith and the power of the Holy Spirit through me. It is time to pray as I ought, with the knowledge that God has placed in me the weapons by His divine power to destroy strongholds, and come against every evil thing!

Pray without ceasing and give thanks to God at every moment. This is the will of God, your vocation as Christians. 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18

This verse has a very interesting statement... it is the will of God for His children to pray without ceasing and give thanks continually, as our vocation! Do I view prayer as I would a job? Do I set times to pray and make the commitment to “be there” with the same commitment that I would a regular job?

Just as others are counting on me to get to my workplace and do my job, so also others are counting on my prayers, whether or not they actually are aware of them. I do not have any way to know if perhaps I am the only one praying for someone, for their particular situation.

The prayer said in faith will save the sick person; the Lord will raise him up and if he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven. There will be healing if you confess your sins to one another and pray for each other. The prayer of the upright man has great power, provided he perseveres. Elijah was a human being like ourselves and when he prayed earnestly for it not to rain, no rain fell for three and a half years. Then he prayed again: the sky yielded rain and the earth produced its fruit. James 5:15-18

Elijah was just a regular man, no different than me in God's eyes. Yet through his prayers, God accomplished a mighty feat – no rain for 3 and a half years, then rain again after all that time. God longs to use me in this same way, if only I am willing and ready to persevere.

What did Elijah do that caused his prayers to be effective? There are 2 stipulations I see. In verse 16: The prayer of the upright man has great power, provided he perseveres. I must be in right standing with God, and I must be persistent, despite how I feel, or what my circumstances are, or what anyone says in opposition to it!

And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, "In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, 'Give me justice against my adversary.' For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, 'Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.'" And the Lord said, "Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?" Luke 18:1-8

That is the persistence I should have! If that unrighteous judge gave the widow what she asked for, how much more will God give justice to His elect?

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us - whatever we ask - we know that we have what we asked of him. - 1 John 5:14-15

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