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Welcome to our Cool Confidential Christian Counseling study program. This is our Prayer Power Bible study on Persistent Prayer in the Bible story and how it affects your be-YOU-tiful Christian walk.
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Welcome back to ...
I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in His Word do I
I trust you're
choosing to take only one step a day,
which shows your heartfelt desire to solve your problem.
Welcome back my friend ...
The sincerity of your prayer is more important than the procedure
of it, and you have been increasing your sincerity with every step you
take. So, let's discuss ...
It matters not if you have recently become a Christian or
you are a seasoned Christian. We all want our PRAYER to be more
effective as to enhance our communication with God. In this step,
youíll discover that EFFECTIVE PRAYER is simple and with just a
little insight from the Bible, you can improve your PRAYER life
Before we start, there are a few
misinterpretations about prayer, and habits that you may have formed
that need to be looked at before you can expect positive improvement
in your prayers, so letís talk for a moment about what prayer is NOT.
Donít be offended if one or more of these things describe a pattern
that you follow in prayer. But instead, rejoice that after learning
more from the Bible about prayer in the next few minutes, youíll be on
your way to a closer relationship with the Lord.
AGAIN ... WE WILL BE LOOKING AT SCRIPTURE TO
Prayer is not ... A daily rattling
off of your list of complaints to God. Most of the things we complain
to God about can be changed by our own choices. Always remember, we
are Godís servants, He is not ours.
God is compassionate about our complaints, but that isn't all he
wants to hear from us.
Prayer is not ... Something we do
because we feel obligated. Our Father wants us to spend time with Him
because of a sincere desire to, not because we need to have our prayer
time card punched.
Prayer is not . . . A one sided
conversation, itís two. Youíre not the only one present and
participating. This will be elaborated on later in our study.
Prayer is not
. . . Better because of
how long a time you spend doing it.
Prayer is not
. . . Reciting the same words over and over and over again, most of
the time with no emotion, or even with your mind concentrating on
something completely different while the words drone in your mind.
When Jesus spoke the Lordís prayer, He said that this was
in which we should pray, not the
only prayer we should offer. A heartfelt prayer is not repetition.
If any of these things have become
your habits, get ready for a totally new attitude about prayer. The
first thing you need to do is relax. Your prayer is as unique as you are. No
two people pray alike. Only you can decide how you pray.
Letís get started by answering:
An important thing to know about prayer is
understanding who you are praying to.
Get to know who the Lord is.
God, Jesus and the Holy spirit are
one entity (see the
study), and youíll find that building relationships in prayer with and
knowing WHO to go THROUGH to reach God's ears and heart, will enhance your prayer life and help you to grow
Though the three are ONE, itís important to know the
different ďpersonalitiesĒ of the three divine persons of God. Just as
you have a body, soul and spirit, and are still only one person, and
we are created in Godís image - God has three parts as well.
The soul --- God
The flesh --- Jesus
The Spirit --- The Holy Spirit
God is your Heavenly Father. He
created you. He knows everything about you. Everything! Every need,
want, and emotion, every quality and quirk. And He loves you more than
any human has the ability to love. Though your sins can never extend
further than His
GRACE, He is a jealous and
peculiar God and wants your complete and unwavering devotion. He will
discipline you out of love and you should welcome that discipline with
an attitude of yearning to always seek, return and remain in His good
graces. God is love. Talk to God as your Father, because He indeed is.
Because the world saw Him in the flesh, some people
find it easiest to relate to Jesus. He is FORGIVENESS. If you feel
that the Lord is upset with you, Jesus will intercede to God if you
ask Him sincerely. He understands our human nature, having lived in
flesh and blood Himself. He understands temptation, disappointment,
physical and mental agony, trial and tribulation and every human
emotion that exists.
Jesus is your friend ...
Ye are my friends,
if ye do whatsoever I command you.
How many of your friends have
died so that you can be forgiven of all your sins and live forever?
Talk to Jesus like He is your best friend.
Holy Spirit is your Comforter. He
is TRUTH. Jesus sent Him to guide us because He would no longer be
here in the flesh, and He understands how tough it is to live a godly
life in an ungodly world. The Holy Spirit is a gentleman. He will not
enter your heart if Heís not invited. Heís your Helper. If you donít
know what to do or say about something, the Holy Spirit will lead you,
if you only ask. He is the Spirit of God and Jesus. He waits for you
to commune with Him. He is your companion, your Spiritual intuition .
. . The Holy Spirit is the voice inside of you that encourages you to
always do the right thing. Talk to the Holy Spirit like He is your mentor.
Because He is ...
PRAYER POWER IS THE LORD'S DELIGHT
PERSISTENT PRAYER PLEASES YOUR FATHER
As your prayer life expands, youíll get a better feeling of which person of God to pray to in different circumstances
and your relationship will deepen with each of them as time goes on.
Just as you want God to love all of you - mind (soul), body, and
spirit, He also wants you to love and pray to all of Him.
What is prayer? Prayer is the way that Christians
communicate with God. But do you feel like youíre at a loss for words
when you pray? What on earth are you supposed to talk about when you
If youíre new to prayer and youíre
having trouble getting started, maybe this will help. Pretend that
someone just introduced you to Jesus for the first time, and left you
alone together to talk.
Get to know Him. How do you do that?
What would you tell Him? What would
you ask? You may feel a bit silly, being that He already knows you
better than you do, but tell Him all about you. You may learn things
about yourself that you didnít know, because many times we donít
discover things about ourselves until we talk about them.
Are there questions that youíve
always wondered about Him? ASK! Are there things about yourself that
youíve never told anyone? TELL HIM your secrets. It will bring you
closer to Him and your friendship will begin to flourish. TRUST HIM!
Share your successes, your failures, your dreams, your
disappointments, your happiness, your sadness . . . EVERYTHING!
He IS your best friend.
Sometimes you may just feel like spending time with
the Lord, without speaking. Just knowing His presence is with you, is
very fulfilling. Sometimes you just canít put your thoughts into words
when you want to pray, but not to worry, because God knows your heart.
The Apostle Paul explains:
Our Spirit groans during prayer, the Holy Spirit
searches the heart and mind of your Spirit and tells God.
There is no designated time to pray.
The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are
available whenever you want or need to talk to them. They long to hear from you. The feeling should be mutual ...
You donít have to
make an appointment, call ahead of time or save up your prayers for
Sunday morning. Just invite them into your heart.
Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee
great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.
When you first wake up, say "Good
Morning" to God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry
aloud: and He shall hear my voice.
Hide and watch whether the
times you remember to do this, your day goes better.
Put something on
your nightstand, or your bathroom mirror that will remind you that He
is waiting for you to talk to Him.
Attach a "post it" note to your
kitchen cabinet, on the refrigerator, or anywhere and everywhere to
remind you to greet Him throughout the day. If your child woke up and
didn't say good morning to you, you would be hurt or think he was mad
Don't ignore God . . . You are His child.
Jesus taught us that we should pray in private.
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and
when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret;
and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
This doesnít mean that youíre confined to your room
when you pray. You can pray anywhere, anytime, just as long as itís
only between you and God.
This brings up some questions. What about blessing
meals or praying in church?
Certainly our Father wants the church to pray
together, but community prayer is quite different from personal
prayer. If everyone present is praying in unity, remember what Jesus
For where two or three are gathered together in my
name, there am I in the midst of them.
If youíre giving thanks for a meal, and everyone
present is in agreement to give thanks, likewise, you are glorifying
God together, if youíre not seeking edification because of your
Saying a little ďGod bless Grandma and GrandpaĒ
with Junior before bed?
We do have to teach the children.
But now letís look at some different scenarios.
And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the
hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and
in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I
say unto you, They have their reward.
Ahhhhhhh, we have just been warned by our Lord
In a chat room, letís say someone opens up the floor
for prayer for something or someone. Everyone begins to put their
petitions up on the board.
THIS is where you must be careful ...
In many cases ... Some souls carefully choose their
most eloquent words to post, clearly for self edification. Some
continue, trying to outdo the others present. Theyíre not speaking to
God, theyíre speaking FOR the other people in the room.
If someone wants to be prayed for, your silent
prayer speaks volumes to God, compared to revealing your intimate
conversation with Him in an open forum.
Now this does NOT apply to those who are praying for
others and are truly led by the SPIRIT of God.
It is not WHAT you do but
In addition ... If
there is godly conversation in the room and youíre Spiritually moved
by it, an enthusiastic ďAmenĒ or something similar is quite different.
Nobody wants to quench your passion, but there is a time and a place
for everything. In prayer, the time is anytime, and the place for
personal prayer is in
the privacy of your mind, with God.
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and
when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret;
and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
There are myriads of reasons WHY to pray.
Most of them fall into about five categories.
Let every thing that hath breath
ye the LORD.
Abide in Jesus, His words in you, and
what you will.
In everything by prayer and supplication with
let your request be known to God.
Trust in Him at all times; ye people,
pour out your heart before Him:
God is a refuge for us. Selah.
Do you ever pray with
thanksgiving? That means do you thank God in advance for the things
you ask Him for? When you do this, youíre showing the strength of your
Faith and your lack of doubt.
Make sure youíre not
being presumptuous by doing this, youíre showing praise.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him
ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and
it shall be given him.
But let him ask in Faith,
nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and
tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of
In the name of Christ Jesus,
At one with the Holy Spirit,
If it be according to your will,
Make your request
I believe that with you, all things
Thank you for answering my prayer.
Glory and praise to you, my Almighty
I love you.
THIS IS JUST AN EXAMPLE
PRAYER IS PERSONAL.
Your Father probably wants you to do it voluntarily, not out of a
feeling of obligation, or in a repetitive manner.
Praying for others is such a wonderful gift.
In praying for someone else, you could be releasing
miracles for them.
You just never know the power of prayer.
As seen in
Prayer by the Church can cause miracles.
As you learned at the very beginning of this study,
everybody prays differently. Sometimes you may pray for hours at a
time, and sometimes you may just whisper one word (like Alleluia or
Thanks or Amen). How you pray is entirely up to you. Just remember,
there are no limitations on prayer, small or large. Your Father judges
your heart, and the only thing He wants from you, is sincerity. You
need not be eloquent in prayer. Verbal gymnastics are not a
requirement in prayer. God doesn't care how you pray, just that you
DO pray. You are not getting graded on your prayer. You are just
showing love to your creator.
With that in mind, there are things in the
Bible about prayer that you may find helpful to know.
PRECIOUS PRAYER POWER
PERSISTENT PRAYER IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST
ALWAYS Ask in Jesusí name.
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name,
that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall
ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
The Bible is very
clear that JESUS is the mediator between us and God and that NOBODY
gets through to the Father without going through JESUS.
I am the door: by me if any man
enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
You MUST enter in the
JESUS door to get to God.
And in that day ye shall ask me nothing.
Verily, verily, I say unto you,
Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, He will give it you.
Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive,
that your joy may be full. These things have I spoken unto you in
proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in
proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father. At that day ye shall ask in my name:
and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you.
GODíS WILL BE DONE
Hereís a very important thing that the Apostle John
wrote about prayer: Ask according to Godís will.
This is especially important when
youíre praying for others. Consider this. What if someone asks you to
pray for a specific reason for them, or what if you, in the goodness
of your heart, take it upon yourself to pray for something that
someone didnít ask for, but you believe it would be a blessing for
1 John 5:14-15
If we ask according to His will,
God hears us, and if we know He hears us, we know it will come to
Innocently, you pray for them, but unbeknownst to you, the wish
is not Godís will for them. The prayer is not answered in the way
hoped for, and questions arise about believing to receive, and asking
in Jesusí name, and innumerable other doubts.
This, my friend, can be
harmful to their Faith, and yours. Not only this, but if the prayer
does come to pass, if it wasnít Godís will, this can be devastating in
unimaginable ways. When you pray for someone else, always be certain,
that youíre praying for Godís will to be done.
WATCH WHAT YOU ASK FOR
God answers all prayers. His answers
are, Yes, No, and Not now.
Praying for Godís
will to be done in our lives may be a little hard to grasp at first,
because the human creature is naturally a selfish being. We want what
we want, when we want it.
But, what about what God wants?
He is our Creator, after all.
He owns the remote control of our lives. He created a plan for us, but
sometimes we think weíre the ones in control. What does that mean,
anyway . . . According to His will? It means that youíre putting your
life in Godís hands . . . Giving Him back the controls.
Many are the plans in a manís heart, but it is the
Lordís purpose that prevails.
The world and itís desires pass away, But the man who
does the will of God lives forever.
There are many devices in a
man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the LORD, that shall stand.
Many things the world offers look
exciting, but we donít see what lies behind itís deceptive promises.
God does. He wants our prayers and plans to be His plans. We often
make our own plans and think weíre headed in the right direction, but
if we donít involve God in the planning, weíll probably end up on the
1 John 2:17
And the world passeth away, and
the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
PASSIONATE PRAYER POWER
PERSISTENT PRAYER WORKS WELL
Donít get this wrong now, God loves you so much that He
wants to give you the desire of your heart, and He wants your plans to
succeed and your dreams to come true, so when we pray for something
that is not His will, He patiently leads us in the right direction.
May He give you the desire of your heart and make all
your plans succeed.
He finds ways to fulfill our hopes
while still conforming to His will. At first it may seem like your
prayer is not answered, but if we follow the direction that He points
us in, weíll find what we were looking for, without disappointment.
Many times youíll realize that what you were praying for, was
something you really didnít want. Praise God for His infinite wisdom!
Grant thee according to thine
own heart, and fulfil all thy counsel.
So, how do you avoid going in the
wrong direction in the first place?
Commit (trust) your prayers and
plans to Him, and Heíll show you the right thing to do.
Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will
Commit thy works unto the LORD,
and thy thoughts shall be established.
The more you grow in Him by following His plans, the more you become
like Him. You will take on His character and His thoughts will become
your thoughts, because He lives through you, guiding you and
conforming you to His image. The more you become like Him, the closer
youíll be to the center of HIS will and your selfishness will vanish.
Donít forget to listen when you pray. Listen with
your heart. Ask Him what He wants to say from His heart, and then
listen. Youíre having a conversation with the Lord, so give Him a
chance to talk. Give Him time to answer. Donít forget that God is a
4:24), so His answers may
not be in the form you expect. You never know how He may answer you .
. . wind, thunder, or perhaps a still small voice as Elijah described,
Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray
unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find
me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
These next passages show the
different ways that people EFFECTIVELY prayed in the Bible.
In the morning I direct my prayer to God
and look up.
O come, let us worship and bow down:
kneel before the LORD
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he
went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward
Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees
three times a day,
and prayed, and gave
thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.
1 Kings 8:54
And it was so, that when Solomon had made an end of
praying all this prayer and supplication unto the LORD, he arose from
before the altar of the LORD, from
kneeling on his knees with his hands spread up to
1 Timothy 2:8
I will therefore that men
pray every where, lifting up holy
hands, without wrath and doubting.
And He (Jesus) was withdrawn from them about a stone's
kneeled down, and prayed.
But Peter put them all forth, and
kneeled down, and prayed.
Below are some of the words of Jesus concerning
Ask and you shall receive.
Believe to receive.
and it shall be given you; seek,
and ye shall find;
and it shall be opened unto you.
And all things,
whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer,
believing, ye shall receive.
You must desire, believe, forgive all when you pray.
LOVE is also a VERY important part of prayer.
And Jesus answering saith unto them,
Have Faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say
unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea;
and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things
which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray,
believe that ye receive them,
and ye shall have them.
And when ye stand praying,
forgive, if ye have ought against any:
that your Father also which is
in Heaven may forgive you your trespasses.
To avoid prayer being hindered you must
Must be at peace and forgive all ...
1 Peter 3:7
Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them
according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the
weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life;
that your prayers be not
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour,
and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless
them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them
which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the
children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to
rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on
the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye?
do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren
only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
OTHER WAYS YOU CAN OFFER PRAYER
KEEP A JOURNAL
You may have heard before that the Bible is the
Lordís love letter to you. How about writing down your prayers to Him?
Itís also a great way to see the progress of your prayer life and your
walk of Faith.
David did this in his Psalms and was the APPLE of God's
PERSISTENT PRAYER GETS ANSWERED PRAYERS
Think about when we discussed praying
for Godís will a few moments ago, and remember that Godís perspective
is eternity. Our temporal outlook on our
lives, sometimes cause us to limit our perspective and we canít see
the potential of the blessings that He bestows on us.
AND THAT IS PRAYER POWER
You may pray for
the opportunity to serve God better, and His answer to your prayer may
not be the same plan as yours. Keep your heart open to the doors He
opens in your life. There may be sacrifices that are necessary in
order to fulfill His will. The means by which His will is accomplished
may seem extreme to us, but donít forget, Heís in control, and He
knows whatís best. Things that seem tragic to us, are sometimes a
blessing from our Father.
For example: Sometimes the only way to make
time in some peoples lives to serve Him is to remove us from things
that we hold most important to us, because we put those things above
Him. That may even mean things that we love. A child may move away,
you may lose your job, a loved one may even die. These things seem
extreme at first, but if you pray for the wisdom to understand Godís
plan, youíll find the blessing that He intends.
Every branch in me that beareth not
fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth
it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
this, that God purges, or prunes our lives, so that we can produce
more fruit for Him. Often times we have false expectations that
blessings mean more (family, friends, possessions, prestige, etc.) in
our lives. My friend, in serving the Lord, less IS more!
FATHER, ITíS ME AGAIN
Remember that little saying about
Godís answers to prayer being, Yes, No, and Not now?
PRODUCTIVE PRAYER POWER
EFFECTIVE PERSISTENT PRAYER
Letís talk about
when the answer is, Not now.
Sometimes we must be patient in waiting
for our prayers to be answered. Godís timing isnít always our timing.
We tend to want things to happen NOW, we donít want to wait. But,
again, we donít see the full picture. From eternity, the things we
think are important donít amount to much, but God created us with a
specific purpose in mind, and His timing is perfect!
So, when we think
things are moving too slow in our life, we need to wait, because God
is moving everything into its proper place. Jesus told a parable to
His disciples about this, that people should always pray, and not to
Donít lose heart!
...There was in a city a judge,
which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in
that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine
adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said
within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because
this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual
coming she weary me. And the Lord said,
Hear what the unjust judge saith. And
shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto
him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge
them speedily ...
WAIT ON THE LORD
Donít be impatient for the Lord to act.
Travel steadily along His path.
And know that the Holy
Ghost communes with our spirit and shares with God what we pray for.
Wait on the LORD,
and keep His way, and He shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when
the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities:
for we know not what we should pray for as
we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for
us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit,
because He maketh intercession for the Saints according to the will of God.
God bless you, and may your prayer life prosper with
every passing moment!
We all make mistakes. We fall. Sin gets in our way. Temptation surrounds us and we don't always resist. But that is exactly why God sent His only Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins, and to give us the FREE gift of GRACE! He wants you to ask forgiveness and keep fighting the good fight of faith. When you find yourself struggling with feelings of failure, unworthiness, fear, weakness or shame, just remember that God loves you so very much and He wants you to get back up when you stumble. PERSEVERE! NEVER GIVE UP! If you have a bad day, this study will help you understand more about the liberating GRACE that our Father wants each and every one of us to enjoy.
STEPPING STONE TEN
Youíre making great strides on THE PATH!
This stepping stone is
STEPPING STONE is just as exciting and important as all the
rest. Until then, ponder on prayer!
Have you weeded today?
weeding a day keeps bad thoughts away.
Continuing in EACH step daily
is so very important.
If you like ...
You may go back over each
completed step as often as you like as to be sure you have
not missed anything.
MAKE SURE YOU JOT DOWN A LITTLE SOMETHING IN YOUR
YOU HAVE COMPLETED STEP TEN
Tomorrow, return to the Forum page of this program:
And we will proceed to ...
STEPPING STONE #11
And I will meet you there!
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