Weekly Thought – June 26, 2018
Fred chewed on ideas, deriving more and more enjoyment from the process. When he completed this exercise he molded his thoughts into material which was useful to others. In his pursuit of stretching others he constantly considered how best to use his thinking for the benefit of his friends.
As June draws to an end we ask you to think about the subject of prayer: prayer for our work, but prayer for the work of God’s kingdom. We can all be part of His plan and His purpose.
Four Answers to Prayer
I have been thinking a great deal about the four answers to prayer that Ed Young, Sr. suggests:
1) “I can’t hear you”
Expanding on these points is a meaningful use of mental energy and time.
Often in scripture (both old and new testaments) God tells an individual, “I won’t hear you because of your sin and disobedience.” Sin blocks our communication and fellowship.
God says “no” to self-indulgent prayers – particularly when what we want is contrary to the way that He wants to develop us. For example, He said “no” to the Apostle Paul when he asked to have the thorn removed. I thought about times in my life when “no” seemed to be the answer. As I considered it more, I realized I had been praying for something that seems to contravene what He is doing in my life.
I have been asking for feelings about things that are in reality facts. Then I remind myself faith comes by hearing, not by feeling. When He tells us “wait” He is talking about an active process in which we exercise faith and obedience. Abraham went for thirteen years without hearing from God and He told him that in his waiting “the promise still holds.”
Sometimes it is impossible for us to accurately identify when the answer is “yes.” It is often wrapped up in circumstances we do not see fitting together. It may be sometime before we can look back and see His “yes.”
The reaction to all these answers must come in acknowledging His sovereignty. We must recognize His love and His involvement in our lives. Christ did this in Gethsemane when He prayed, “Thy will be done – not mine.” This should always be our attitude toward God.
It is dangerous to nag God as we try to get our will, not His. We remember the scripture, “He gave them their desires, but with it leanness of soul.” Prayer is serious business, but it is also one of the great treasures afforded the Christian. We need to mature in our understanding and application.
This week think about: 1) Where is God saying “wait?” 2) How has prayer changed me? 3) What is my current heart condition before God?
Words of Wisdom: “When He tells us “wait” He is talking about an active process in which we exercise faith and obedience.”
Wisdom from the Word: “For the culmination of all things is near. So be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of prayer.” (1 Peter 4:7 NET Bible)