Thursday 27 Jul 2017
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Psalm 1: 2-3

Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.

 

Prayer is the Key

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Why Pray

Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” – Luke 11:1

Prayer remains one of the most powerful tool in the hands of every believer and the act of prayer remains one of the most fruitful exercise that we as believers can ever undertake out of the many that we have been instructed to undertake. Prayer for us as believers, represents the act of communicating with God by making our supplication and petitions known to him. Prayer is the means and the channel through which as believers we communicate with our God, prayer is simply bringing before God our petitions, supplications, request and the making of our needs to Him. Not only that do we make our supplications to God through prayers, it is also one of the channel through which we expect to get a feedback from him. Prayer remains the key that unlocks the mystery of our faith, it remains the key with which we consummate the relationship that we have with God who is the father of our spirit.

Prayer is the only key

It is of no use as believers to go about grumbling, murmuring or complaining whenever we are weighed down by pressing needs or whenever we are faced with situations that are beyond us and help is needed. It is of no use to tear our hairs out and get ourselves stressed out either as nothing would be achieved by doing this, they simply do not work only prayer does. This manner of responding to situations in life does not cut it with God because they are unacceptable to him, they are unacceptable because they fall short of the channel that he has ordained and recommended for us as believers to use whenever we desire to make our needs known to him. Why is this so you may ask? Well those acts represents everything that voids the power of prayers, whenever we come to God in prayer, one thing is required from us and that thing is - Faith. Without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6).

But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Fear is the opposite of faith and God has not given to us the spirit of fear which is expressed through anxieties and worries. Murmuring and grumbling which God finds sinful, are indeed the very opposites of praise and worship which are essential part of prayers. Those who murmur and grumble when faced with trials fall into sin easily and this renders their prayers ineffective.

So how should the believer behave when pressed and faces trials as well mounting and pressing needs that threaten their peace pushing them to the brink and help appears not be to be in sight? In answer to this question let us take counsel from the instructions given to every believer by word of God -

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God (Phillipians 4:6).

As you can see we are instructed to make everything known to God through prayers and prayers alone.

Does prayer work?

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit. (James 5:16-17).

Prayer does work and testimonies abound that it does work. Men have been praying  from time immemorial, men have been calling upon the name of the Lord since creation, prayer does work. While our answers may not come the way we expect it to come or in the way and manner that is so obvious, but one thing stands for sure and that is prayer is a powerful weapon that works. The prayer made in faith works, prayers offered under the right condition works. What if i do not have enough faith? Well that is why we have people who stand in the gap, people who pray for others and the reason why as a ministry we offer to pray for those who need to be prayed for. While everyone can develop the faith needed to obtain results from prayers, the scripture does not ignore the fact that not all have the sort of faith that might be needed to obtain for them what they might be looking for, hence the bible enjoins us to pray for one another.

How do I pray

But i do not know how to pray? And i have never prayed in my life you may say and how do I pray you may ask? You are not the only one , even at a time the disciples of Jesus who later became the mighty Apostles that we read about in the bible did not know how to pray and they asked Jesus to teach them how to pray:

Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” - Luke 11:1

Jesus obliged them and taught them not only how to pray but how to pray and pray effectively - Mathew 6:5-14. You do not need long winded words before you can pray effectively, the most important thing you need to keep at the back of your mind is that you are coming into the presence of an awesome but loving God. Although you may feel unworthy to be in his presence, remember your righteousness is not in your works it is in Christ, God sees and accepts you through Jesus.

I want you to know that he knows you before you even utter anything, he knows about your needs , so why pray? Well when you pray you invite him into your situation as he would not violate your space. When you pray you express not only your desire to have him step into your situation, but you also profess that you trust him and recognise that you need him in your life.

To grow and develop a healthy prayerful life, i will urge you meditate on the teachings of Jesus by reading Mathew 6:5-14, use the model that he prescribed to his disciples to also build your own prayers and watch your prayer life unfold.