Monday, July 21, 2008
Let me give you 6 guidelines.
1) First, have the right attitude.
We will only pray when we realise how dependent we are on God,
and we realise we can trust Him to hear our prayers, and to answer them according to His will.
There're people, who never think about God, and suddenly one day they find themselves in a crisis
that's far beyond themselves to handle,
and for the first time in their lives, they begin to pray and cry out for help.
Let's look at Acts 27. Imagine that you were one of the people on that ship, and as verse 20 says,
"Now when neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest beat on us, all hope that we would be saved was finally given up."
Most probably at this time, you'll be kneeling down to pray for your life.
At this hour of your life, all your pride and self-sufficiency would have gone by now. Now you feel a dependency on an Almighty God, you never felt before. Because before, there was no such need. And Matthew 5:3 says:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven"
That is to say that when you felt a dependency on God, you're blessed. "Poor in spirit" means you're dependent on God. And this is the 1st of all the other beattitudes; the 1st leading to the rest of the beattitudes. This is the right attitude you must have in order to make prayer a part of your daily life.
How can you pray when you don't believe you need God's help?
The Bible reminds us that
"God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble." (1Peter5:5)
Prideful, self-sufficient people will never pray.
2) Second, with brokenness
One of the most difficult things for any person to see clearly is his own sin.
Through humility, the Holy Spirit will reveal to us our sin,
so that we can confess it, repent of it and be set free,
so that God can bless us after the hindrance is removed.
Then the Holy Spirit will give insight into His word, His plans and purposes,
and guide us gently and confirm our hearts, giving assurance.
Through our weakness, God pours His power into us,
for we know not how to pray as we ought to pray.
"if My people will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face,
and turn from their wicked ways."
"a broken and a contrite spirit I will not despise."
Through prayer also comes a spirit of brokenness.
Prayer in God's presence will change us.
If we continue to walk in His presence, we'll remain broken and humble.
To live like this is to walk in honesty; we learn to lose face. We let our pride go.
The Holy Spirit will cause us to be open and frank, with humility before God.
If we're broken and contrite before God, He gives us more grace.
Success is based on the grace of God.
How do we get more grace?....
by being broken in humility before God.
Therefore the secret to success in prayer is brokenness.
It was God's grace that made Joseph successful, and favour from the king toward Nehemiah.
Nehemiah 1: 4,11
-I wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before God
-O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant,
and let Your servant prosper this day.
Through prayer, Nehemiah knew the mind of God, and he was able to stand firm,
and was able to be in control of the circumstances around him.
As you pray, there arise a new attitude of violence against your flesh and pride,
and you learn how to walk gently with the Holy Spirit,
to allow God to complete His divine work in our lives.
3) Third, with godly fear
Prayer is not just talking with God;
it's a deep, reverent submission to Him.
Through prayer, we come to know the intentions of the father heart of God.
When we come to God in prayer, what is the attitude of our hearts?
God reads our hearts as we pray....
is your heart in oneness with God?
is there reverent submission with godly fear?
is there singleness of mind to hear the still small voice of God in you?
is your heart receptive to His guidance?
"I know the thoughts I think toward you, to give you a future and a hope.
Then you'll call upon Me, and go and pray to Me, and I'll listen to you.
And you'll seek Me and find Me,
when you search for Me with all your heart;
I'll be found by you."
Jesus prayed and He was heard because of His godly fear,
beause of the submissive attitude of His heart.
Hebrews 5: 7-10
"who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him, who was able to save Him frm death, and was heard because of His godly fear, though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the authour of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, called by God as High Priest "according to the order of Melchizedek."
4) Fourth, without fear but with boldness and confidence
When you pray, "Lord, give me safe journey home, which is 10 miles away. Keep me safe from road accidents" Do you think you're praying with faith?
Then how should you pray?
"Lord, help me to be humble, giving way to other cars. Help me not to be impatient, but wait patiently and move with common sense." or
"Lord, even if a big Tsunami were to come and destroy everything there is, I know Lord, if my time is not up, I will still be standing upright, just as You said to Paul, "Do not be afraid; you must stand before Caesar."
Deaths and disasters do not happen by chance;
they happen due to a reason, and for a reason.
Nothing happens by chance.
For God, there's no such thing as a coincidence.
You were born here on this earth not by chance either.
God knew you since you were in your mother's womb,
till the day you die.
Everything happens according to God's will and perfect timing.
5) Fifth, with unwavering faith
We're to pray with unwavering faith, believing that God hears our prayers, also that God will
answer them, in His timing, with His methods,
and for our eternal benefit, and for His glory.
"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for
and certain of what we do not see."(Hebrews 11)
When we pray, think of the greatness of God. See Him for the mighty God He is.
God created all things....the heavens and the earth.
He moves mountains and calms seas.
As you pray in the face of a spiritual attack, set your mind on the vastness of God's power.
In the face of fear, He gives us boldness.
"God has given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."(2Tim 1:7)
He has power over death.
He gives us an eternal home in heaven.
6) Sixth, According to God's will
God is more interested in us knowing His will and obeying His
than just "saying our prayers."
What God wants is a heart obedient to His will.
Cry out with deep concerns of your heart,
and allow God to bring understanding, strength and comfort into your lives.
Know the heart of God; know His will.
Our prayers are often self-centred, outside the will of God.
God is committed to His loving plans and purposes for us.
God always has eternity in mind.
Prayer is not just for the purpose of getting God to help us,
but of getting our hearts and minds in line with God's will.
Through prayer, we receive wisdom for our lives.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."
God desires to instruct us in the way we should go.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on thy own understanding;
in all thy ways, acknowledge Him, and He'll make your paths straight."
If we lean on our own understanding, our hearts and minds can be full of the cares of this world.
Prayer is the secret to live without anxious thoughts.
But many people of the world try to do all things by themselves....
so they have stomach ulcers, heart attacks, insomnia and depression.
On the other hand, prayer produces spiritual understanding, even physical health.
Prayer gives us greater discernment, so that we're able to see what others cannot see.
Prayer helps us to hear the still, small voice in us,
hearing God speaking to us in our hearts,
sometimes giving a small warning,
and a word can change everything, making all the difference.
God's purposes are much larger than all our needs and requests.
The plans of God are beyond our imaginations, more than we can ever imagine.
Often we do not see the whole picture;
we ask for things that are unwise or even wrong.
God knows what is best for us.
God not only is working in us, but also working around us,
and often God guides us through our circumstances.
to love even though it's impossible n looks stupid to do so
Love thy neighbor as you love yourself.
This is the second greatest commandment Jesus gave.
Yes, the Lord hears your cries...cry for help, cry for grace, cry for justice.
He knows what you are going through
and He wants you to know that you are not in this alone.
The Lord is always good to us,
though many times circumstances show otherwise.
But take a look at Job, take a look at Paul,
take a look at all those who had stayed faithful to God.
They were persecuted when they were doing the right thing.
They were tortured because of their faith.
Jesus was crucified because of His love for us.
All the great men and women in the bible have something in common.
Their love for God's people outweighs any suffering they had to go through.
What gave them this determination is their love for others.
It's difficult to love those who had done wrong to us,
It's difficult to look past that ugly face to see the lost soul inside our enemies.
But that is what Jesus is calling us to do,
to love even though it's impossible and stupid to do so.
As Christians, we are fools in the eyes of men
but what matters most is that God is pleased and happy with us.
Jesus came to this Earth as a man, so that He could die for you and me.
He was God, who became a servant.
He was God, who died a convict's death.
But God is saying to us today that "it is finished."
We don't have to suffer anymore to save ourselves.
It is already done!
All that is left to do is believe.
Everything in this world belongs to God
and we as His children have everything too!
"For all things are yours: whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death,
or things present or things to come - all are yours. And you are Christ's, and Christ is God's."
(1Corinthians 3: 21-23 )
Victory is ours since the moment you believed that Jesus is the Son of God.
We no longer have to fight this battle as the battle is already won!
No, despite all these things,
overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. (Romans 8 : 37 )
It is difficult to believe in things that seem so unreal and impossible.
But that is what faith is about, believing without the presence of doubt.
So, take this step of faith.
Tell God that you are hopeless and helpless without Him.
Tell God how afraid you are,
how angry and frustrated you are with life,
how worried you are about the future,
practically just how tired you are with life right now.
Just close your eyes and start pouring out to God
until you feel the weight on your shoulder is lighter.
Let the tears, all the hurts and pains pour out from your heart.
It is between you and God, no one else.
There's no pretense, no hiding, no holding back.
Be transparent in front of Jesus, laying all your junks and burden at His feet,
for it is not for us to carry all these burden in life.
It had never meant to be ours to bear.
Imagine an empty cross, where Jesus was once hung.
Just think about His sacrifice and love for you.
All Jesus ever cared about was you;
nothing else mattered to Him but you.
He loves you so much that His heart aches whenever He sees yours aching.
Jesus loves us dearly.
We are the world to Him.
Don't you think He would have a great future for us?
Don't you think He would provide us with our every need?
Don't you think He loves us too much to let us suffer?
All our bond ages had been broken when Jesus took our place at the cross.
It is we today who bound ourselves to chains
when the key to these chains is all this while in our hands.
Therefore let's make Jesus' death worth while.
Go back to the basics; go back to your first love.
Go back to the roots to why you call yourself a Christian today.
Going back to basics is always the best move to make when you are lost.
Go back to your Abba Father.
letting my tears wash away my pain,
my horrifying pain that I want it to go away.
the rain n wind gets harder blowing me to the side
knowing I am cracking and breaking inside.
empty and alone, trying to hide.
the rain is beating hard,
as i feel the beat of my broken heart
that is slowly falling apart.
can i find solace in the rain
taking away my pain.
i see the reflection of me,
in the broken pool of waters
the tears i cry i can hardly see.
my eyes are red,
my hair blowing in the wind,
the scars on my face, slowly are
disappearing without a trace.
walking around, there is nothing
not even the smallest thing to make
as I look down, staring at my feet.
the feelings of self doubt,
feelings of lost within a crowd.
feeling empty and alone.
trapped in this world.
the wind blows through my hair,
as the rain rushes down,
making me feel free for a moment
putting me at ease, at peace for now.
as i start to breathe again....
taken from "rain", "breathe" by Sarah
What has the autumn done to us?
That endless wind, that heavy rain...
My eyes with tears and bitter pain.
It's over now, the autumn's game
though it hurts a lot
We could be happy, but we're not
Why is life so cruel and sad?
It's stolen happiness we've had
when heartache appears in our lives
we are forced to face bittersweet truths
we are reminded that within each challenge
there is always a higher offering
although hidden from our view
we must raise our thinking, open our hearts
and recognize that we are being called to a new stage in life,
a higher calling, a new dimension in life
unfamiliarity can be frightening
and new paths look uncertain.
but what is life, if not a journey into the wondrous unknown?
look around...grace and beauty can still be found within pain.
the only lock,keeping us trapped or blind or stuck is fear.
the only cage is the condition of our minds.
Can we change the past?
No. It’s as hard as granite, as immovable as a mountain.
Cold Mountain Movie says,
“You can grieve endlessly for the loss of time and damage done.
For many things that happened.
You can grieve on and on.
You can grieve your heart out,
And in the end, you’re still where you are.”
All your grief has not change a thing.
What you have lost will not be returned to you.
It will always be lost.
You are left with only scars.
All you can choose to do is go on or not.
But if you go on, it’s knowing you carry your scars with you.”
Grief and bitterness can only keep you a prisoner of the past.
What’s done is done.
Regret cannot change what has already happened.
No matter how many times we say “if only.”
No matter how bitterly we blame and accuse.
bitterness can only ruin us.
We will become prisoners in our own dark souls,
Suffocated by our own brooding thoughts.
You reap your own thoughts
Yes, we must learn to move on,
No matter the past.
We cannot change what has happened.
We do have one power…we can trust God to redeem the past.
If we let Him.
God can use the evil of what has happened
And transforms it into something good.
Do right and don’t go against your conscience.
Sometimes you doubt yourself.
Have peace in your heart; hold on to the things you believe in.
Put your trust in God
For He’ll never leave you.
He’s ever faithful, the One who created you.
Don’t let others pull you down.
Don’t let others talk you out of things.
People may not understand you, but God understands.
If you believe, you can touch the supernatural.
You can see miracles in your life.
It’s not easy to put the past behind.
But look what the future holds for you.
With God’s help, you can almost do anything
Including overcoming your fears and pain.
Everybody deserves a second chance.
Hatred in your heart'll only bring death.
Be slow to anger and judgment,
or judgment shall come upon you.
Always care for one another.
Love others as you would love yourselves.
Have a caring and loving heart,
just like Jesus and reach out to others.
Be compassionate towards others.
Don't judge a person by the looks.
Go and preach the Gospel,
and in wisdom,
because you must be wise
in everything you do.
Be hot for Christ.
Don't take things for granted;
and don't be easily offended,
but always give and take with one another.
And have love in your own family,
and also in the church.
In your hour of need,
always run to the Lord for help;
cry out to Him; have faith in Him.
The Lord has given everyone a gift
to hear His voice.
He shall speak to you if you're willing to hear.
God is always speaking.
Hear the Lord's voice in your heart,
and He shall guide you through it.
Have faith and believe His words.
Don't be proud and think
that you're full of knowledge.
Obey His words and commandments.
Obey His commandment
to keep the sabbath holy.
Don't be just be a Sunday Christian,
but take notice of people
around you in your church,
and in other nations.
Many people are suffering.
So count your blessings.
The road to heaven is narrow;
so you have to lean onto God.
Allow the Holy Spirit to
guide you in whatever you do.
you are not alone
Your voice, Your spirit always gives me courage to face the world
I am not alone.
thank You Lord, I will never be alone.
I will not leave you alone. I will send the Helper, the Holy Spirit to you .
And when He has come, the Spirit of truth, He will guide you into all truth.
My Love for you will never fail.
Trust in Me, and I shall straighten your path.
Have faith and hope in Me.
Everyday is a new day and a new start.
Put the past behind you, and work your future.
Do not feel despaired, but instead rejoice
For the I shall return, and My children will return to Me,
And they will be with Me for eternity.
Work your way to heaven.
It’s a narrow and bumpy road,
But never give up.
Cling on to My Word;
Let the My Word be printed in your heart.
Enjoy the life that I’ve blessed you with.
You’re here for a purpose and a reason;
It’s not by accident you’re here.
Never let men pull you down,
Or tell you who you are,
Because you’ve a father that’s almighty,
The creator of the heavens and the earth;
So who shall you fear?
Seek the Kingdom of God,
And everything shall be added unto you
God is in our midst in our everyday life.
Supernatural things do happen,
but with our naked eyes we can’t see it.
It’s only through the spirit that things are revealed to us.
It’s only in times of desperation
that we would turn to a higher power for help,
for we know that with our own strength
we can do nothing about it.
But just imagine spending your whole life
with that person of great authority
and having His favor over you….
you would be able to do things
you thought were impossible.
Many things happen we find hard to understand,
and as unique and special we may be,
creation can never out beat the Creator.
We are only part and parcel of the His masterpiece.
As small as we are, we are part of this great art piece,
for every one of us could be a history maker,
with the potential to be.
It’s all determined by the choices we make
and the life we choose to live.
The light is there but we don’t see it because we are blind.
But you can see through our hearts,
and feel the presence of God around you;
and feel His love too.
But unless we have the desire and passion we won’t get it.
Everyone of is imperfect but God is flawless and perfect.
And we are made righteous through Him so we can be like Him.
All it requires is great faith.
Faith can move mountains.
The clock is ticking and time flies
So capture the moment and make it a fresh start
UNTIL YOU ARE TRUE TO YOURSELF
until you are true to yourself
it's difficult for God to help u.
The Lord loves you.
Indeed He is by your side this very second.
Just feel His presence
feel that warmth
feel that love flowing from Him.
Take in His goodness n His glory.
Read His Word for it will give u strength.
Always lean on His grace n mercy
for we r nothing without Him.
Seek His mercy n grace.
Trust God with your life
for He is never wrong
He never will ever forsake u.
Just know that He is your heavenly Father
who will hear all your problems
n embrace n comfort u.
It is the only time
when u can be yourself
when u can be honest
n truthful with yourself
for there is nothing to hide from God.
Until u r true to yourself
until u realize your weaknesses
until acknowledge your need for God's strength,
God can do nothing.
God will do His best when u do your best.
It needs your commitment together with God's promise.
Then u will see results
that go beyond your expectation.
With God, dream big
for your Father in heaven is a big God;
He is indeed the King of all kings.
Believe in yourself.
Give all glory n praises to God.
Trust in Him for guidance in your life.
Let Him love u.
Renew your love
with the One who first loved u.