Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Praying - What Is The Big Deal?

Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, "Father, I thank You that You have heard Me." —John 11:41

{CHAMBERS} “When the Son of God prays, He is mindful and consciously aware of only His Father. God always hears the prayers of His Son, and if the Son of God has been formed in me (see Galatians 4:19) the Father will always hear my prayers. But I must see to it that the Son of God is exhibited in my human flesh. “…your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit…” (1 Corinthians 6:19) […] Jesus says, “In that day you will ask in My name…” (John 16:26). What day does He mean? He is referring to the day when the Holy Spirit has come to me and made me one with my Lord. […] Never let your common sense become so prominent and forceful that it pushes the Son of God to one side. Common sense is a gift that God gave to our human nature— but common sense is not the gift of His Son. Supernatural sense is the gift of His Son, and we should never put our common sense on the throne. The Son always recognizes and identifies with the Father, but common sense has never yet done so and never will. Our ordinary abilities will never worship God unless they are transformed by the indwelling Son of God. We must make sure that our human flesh is kept in perfect submission to Him, allowing Him to work through it moment by moment.”

{ELGIN}  When the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray, (Luke 11:1) “It happened that while Jesus was praying in a certain place, after He had finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.””  Jesus prayed what we know as the Lord’s prayer.  The essence of that prayer was first – focused primarily on God and second – focused on helping us walk in a manner that brings Him glory. Give me what I need to live on this planet and help me to fulfill the great commandments (Matthew 22:37-39).  The really great thing is that the same Spirit that is in us, also prays for us.  (Romans 8:26-27) “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”

Did you catch that?  The Spirit prays in accordance with the will of God.  And so should we, not in accordance to our will … or … wants.  (James 4:2-3) “You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.”  We really need to think about why we pray and what we pray for.  But most importantly, we need to pray.  There is a spiritual dynamic in prayer that every Christian should embrace as a critical part of their day to day living. Praying before you eat.  Praying with your children.  Praying in church.  All good.  But not enough. Paul wrote, (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  Why?  Because it is the will of God.  And that is why it is such a big deal!

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