Over the past three Sundays, we have focused our attention on prayer and the faith necessary to believe that our prayers will be answered. We shared that the overall goal of this series is: God is limited by the Activation of our Faith and the Practice of our Prayers… Therefore, we desire to Put Feet to our Faith and Apply Faith to our Prayers
I also shared that in this Sermon Series I will press against and push back on the beliefs that some have shared over the years that are not consistent with the teachings of the Bible. I understood at the beginning of this series that this would be a difficult task because many of us hold onto the beliefs and teachings that we learned and received from humans more than what is taught by God in His Word – the Bible. Many of us will actually reject and/or deny the teachings of the Bible while seeking to hold onto well-established clichés and phrases.
Therefore, in this series, we have encouraged the church to: 1. Address the bad theology in many churches regarding prayer. 2. To move beyond well-established clichés and popular phrases. 3. To develop a theology and view of prayer that is more consistent with the Bible. In this, we understand that God did not give us prayer so that we could come to Him and ask for things. God gave us prayer so that we could establish and nurture an intimate relationship with Him. Prayer, therefore, is given to us to Position us for agreement with God’s will.
Some have questioned, “How will the youth understand prayer when we say prayer does not change things. If prayer does not change things, then why should they pray?” First, we must understand when God answers our prayers, our prayer did not change the thing – God did. Why did God change the things? Because it was in His will. God desires that I spend time with Him, understanding His will more than simply asking Him for things…
Previously, I shared the story of praying for the rain for the farmers in the Mississippi Delta. Know that weeks before we went, we were praying for God to use us to minister there. We did not know that we were going to pray for rain before we left. However, we believed, in faith, that God was going to use us. We did not know when, where or how He would use us – only that He would. It was after we awoke that morning that we were led to go to the field and pray for rain.
Our prayer did not make it rain. Our prayer positioned us in agreement with God’s will as we witnessed the miracle that caused the youth to personally see the hand of God, and be drawn closer to God.
Consider this example: You meet a millionaire and begin asking him for things. He may give it to you and he may not. Then, you discover that he desires a relationship with you. So you begin spending time with him, getting to know him. As the relationship develops, he tells you to ask him for specific things. Everything that you ask for, he gives to you. Why? Because he loves you and wants to.