Saturday, May 1, 2010

Prayer: The Tangible Expression of Our Dependence Upon God

Without discounting the reading and studying of the bible there is nothing more important in the life of a believer than prayer. Prayer is the means by which we demonstrate our submission and dependence on God. Prayer is the tangible means by which we express our dependence on the supply of God’s grace to us.

If our prayer life is neglected, non-existent, or merely a means of providing a shopping list to God for our latest wants and wishes we are not exercising dependence upon God. We are actually making a statement that we do not need the grace that God extends through this means and that we can handle our life on our own.

What is prayer all about? Prayer is our response…

• …to the character of God
 
 “Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised,
and His greatness is unsearchable.”
 (Psalms 145:3, ESV)

When we pray we not only are able to give great praise to our God but we are able to learn more of His marvelous character and attributes. He is a great God with a marvelously multi-faceted nature. Much of our prayer should be focusing on giving the worth and adoration due to God in relationship to His attributes.

• …to the call of God

       o God calls us to fellowship with Him – Psalms 27: 4, 8

       o God calls us to rest in Him – I Peter 5:7

       o God calls us to Himself for strength and wisdom – Isaiah 40:29

       o God calls us to Himself for protection and help – Psalm 40:1-2

Prayer of course is so much more than simply a response to the character and the call of God. Prayer is the means by which we are able to consciously grow in our dependence upon God for our strength, energy, and grace to live the life that He has called us to live. The only way to live each and every day in an awareness of growing reliance and dependence upon God rather than in the lifeless energy of our human strength is by prayer.

I encourage you to examine your prayer life. I don’t need to ask you to examine your spiritual strength, your mechanical disciplines, or your means and methods of getting by. I know that they will all be meager and weak if the examination of your prayer life reveals that it is inconsistent or non-existent.

Allow me to share seven truths about prayer:

1. As you pray, let prayer be your first choice and not your last choice

2. As you pray, let your gaze be on God and your glance on your requests.

3. As you pray, pray from conviction and not from crisis

4. As you pray, pray seeking the help and aid of the Holy Spirit

5. As you pray, fill your prayers with praise for God and for all that He is

6. As you pray, make your focus on spiritual principles for growth, rather than stuff. God is not a heavenly vending machine in the sky or a genie to take out and rub.

7. As you pray, always remember God is worthy of our time, effort, and energy, so pray without ceasing.

7 comments:

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

A most englightening post about prayer, which has been a great comfort. Thank you.

Yvonne.

THE OLD GEEZER said...

Good Morning Brother Gregg

Thank you for a most needed Bible study on prayer. We have all probably heard the cliche
"Prayer Changes Things". Does that mean God changes? God forbid! It is me that needs to change, not God.

I pray you have a great weekend

Brother Ron

Kansas Bob said...

Great stuff Gregg! I posted the seven truths at Daily Prayer with a link back to here.

Blessings, Bob

Lisa said...

Prayer is something I've been praying about recently and my mom and I even had a discussion about it earlier today. God is really moving on my heart to give more of myself and my time to prayer. Great post Greg. I'm going to copy the seven truths into a word document to go back to for reference.

Thank you!

LibbyLibbyLibbyLibbyLibby said...

Amen and Amen! I would say the greatest men and women in our history and in our midst who move mountains and see things happen are those that spend a LOT of time in prayer... not just a few moments or briefly praying while driving but a LOT of time praying and being lost in that prayer.

Gregg said...

Yvonne - thanks for dropping by. I am glad this post was of some comfort or benefit to you.

Ron - Good morning, always glad to see you stop by. Prayer is designed to change us by bringing our will in line with His!

Kansas Bob - thank you! Thanks for dropping by. Thanks for posting it, I hope it is a benefit to someone. The most unused resources in the church today!

Lisa - I am glad God is moving in your heart about prayer. We are not victorious in Him, submitted to Him, and utilizing all that is ours if we don't have a vibrant, vital, and fervent prayer life. Thanks for stopping by. May God bless you richly!

Libby - you are right the men and women God has used have been men and women who spent time on their knees.

Brian Ray Todd said...

I read in Luke 11:1 "Now it came to pass, as He (Jesus)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.” I think that many ask this question every day and many others should. I'm happy that you posted this lesson, that not only we know how to pray, but also what is behind our prayers in this multi-faceted life of faith and prayer. Thank you Pastor Gregg