Monday, September 27, 2010
Challenge Answers - A Good Attitude Is Effective
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Good Evening to All!
The results of the Bible Challenge are as follows:
1. d) his nails grew long as bird claws (Daniel 4:33
2. False (John 3:3)
3. d) 3,000 (Acts 2:41)
4. c) Ananias (Acts 9:10-19)
5. d) Sergius Paulus (Acts 13:6-12)
6. c) Macedonia (specifically, Philippi: Acts 16:9-15)
7. c) an earthquake that decimated his prison and thus could have brought about his downfall (Acts 16:25-50)
8. a) Athens (Acts 17:22-34)
9. b) burned their magic books (Acts 19:19)
10. c) Thessalonians (1 Thessalonians 1:9)
Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth. (3) For strangers are risen up against me, and oppressors seek after my soul: they have not set God before them.
We all want our prayers to be effective and we want to be able to talk to God in ways that successfully bring His heart and His plans into our lives and the lives of other people. The Bible says, "The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much" (James 5:16 KJV).
To have a successful prayer life, one thing that is necessary is a GOOD ATTITUDE. Without that, a person might as well be talking to a wall. A bad attitude is a virtual wall between our prayers and God.
People associate an attitude as being "smart aleck", indifferent, pleasing, positive and so on. This is not necessarily what I am speaking of tonight. By Good Attitude, I am speaking of Praying according to God's will. Not the world's will. The world's will is more materialistic.
Have you ever prayed, then waited and waited for the answer to your prayer only to finally decide that God was not going to answer it? I know if have.That is until I stopped and realized how I was praying.
First, to carry over a little from a previous post your heart must be right. If you if you come to His throne with bitterness against someone or even something, your heart is not right. God tells us to make things right with those we have things against or who have things against us before we come to the altar for prayer. We must also make sure what we are going to pray about is in God's will. If it does not line up with the word of God, then it is not in His will.
In other words, if you had a fight with someone, or someone did you wrong, you wouldn't pray for something bad to happen to them. You would pray for God's will to be done in this situation. As well as asking God to help you forgive them. (Although, this actually should have happened before you came to pray). Unforgiveness can and will hinder your prayer life. It's like it put a closed door between a person's prayer and God until forgiveness is offered.
An effective prayer really has nothing to do with rules. I have seen books that tell "how to pray". I've seen books that say a "correct" way to pray is to say this 3 times then amen, then say that 4 times then say amen.. Hooey! The only "pattern" we should go by is what Jesus said when he quoted the Lord's Prayer. He did not mean to quote that prayer. He was using it as an example, a pattern. For example the first three verses are praise and stating God's Holy characteristic, and an invitation for Him to come into our hearts (thy kingdom come). The rest of the verses are requests for God to meet the needs of His people, and then the last verse is praise and thanks to Him. While this is a pattern, there is nothing saying we HAVE to pray this way. I, myself am more at ease talking to Him as though He is a friend, although I do show reverence and respect. I mean, I don't say "hey buddy, I need to talk to you". I know how important He is to me in my life, I know I owe Him EVERYTHING, so I definitely come to His throne and into His presence with love and respect. I also try to paraphrase some scriptures from the Bible to Him, because that shows that I care enough to read His Word and that He means more to me than just someone who will provide for me. I have a personal relationship with Him.
Another thing is constantly praying for material things. God deals in the spiritual aspects. I'm not saying if you are in desperate need of a car for work or something like that, that He won't make a way, but it's when a person starts putting all kinds of material things before the things that God wants for us such as we need to pray for understanding of God 's Word, a clean heart, renewal of our spirit, deeper compassion, anything that deals with our souls. The Bible already says that we shouldn't worry about what we have to eat, drink or wear because God is our Provider. He Shall supply all our needs. A new car, better house new furniture, this sort of thing we CAN do without. God is SO Good, He sees what we need and if we are true to Him, if we are Faithful to Him, He will give us MORE than we can ever imagine.
To have an effectual prayer life, we need to take inventory of our priorities. Things of our spirit MUST come first. If we pray for these, and we act upon them then everything else will fall into place. If we fight against it and continue to want what the world has, then we will lose out BIG TIME. God's will for us is most important. We must remember that God knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows what is going to happen down the road because He knows our past, present and future, so what we think we need right now, He may see down the road as a hindrance or a detour away from Him and that is something we don't want. We need to stay as close to Him as possible.
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Good Night to All and May God Bless!