We are in a season where prayer should be a significant part of our lives. Man cannot solve the dilemmas we are going through now with their temporary fix. America is not in a good place right now. You don’t know who to trust or who you can genuinely depend on in times of distress. Prayer is a necessity in our lives. First, we need to understand prayer and how our prayers can reach God’s ears.
What is prayer?
Prayer is communicating with God and seeking His favor. Do you communicate with Him? Do you seek his favor?
Matthew 6:5–6 Can prayer be dangerous for some people?
There are dangers surrounding prayer, some negative factors that must be guarded against.
1. Prayer can become hypocritical (v. 5). A person can pray for the wrong reasons, with the wrong motives.
2. Prayer can become habit-forming (v. 5). Prayer is a wonderful experience, very rewarding emotionally and mentally and in having our needs met as God answers our prayer. We can begin to love praying and still be praying amiss.
3. Prayer can become connected with certain places (v. 5). A believer has places that mean much to him in his prayer life, but he must guard against limiting God’s presence only to those places, even if it is the church.
4. Prayer can become empty repetition (v. 7). A person can take any phrase or form of prayer and make it a meaningful experience, or make it a formal and meaningless occasion. (Note how often the Lord’s Prayer is repeated by rote memory with the mind focused elsewhere.)
5. Prayer can become too long (v. 7). A believer can begin to feel he is heard because of “many words” (see Ec. 5:1–2).
6. Prayer can become self-glorifying (v. 8). A person can begin to feel he must inform and convince God of his great need. When the answer comes (out of the mercy of God, despite praying amiss), the believer begins to glory in his spirituality—that he has what it takes to get things from God.
7. Prayer can become self-deceptive (vv. 7–8). A person can begin to think he is heard (1) because of “many words” and (2) because he convinces God of his need.
There are a lot of reasons prayers go unanswered.
Man does not have all the reasons for unanswered prayers, but the Word of God can point us in the right direction when trying to figure out this dilemma.
• Disobedience (see Deut. 1:42-4S; Isa. 1:19,20; Heb. 4:6);
• Prejudice and hate (see Prov. 26:24-28; 1 John 2:9-12:3:15-22); 0 Unrepented sin (see Pss. 19:12,13; 66:18; Isa. 59:1,2); • Overindulgence or not caring for your body, which is God’s temple (see Prov. 23:1-8; Luke 21:34; 1 Cor. 3:16);
• Touching (attacking) God’s anointed (see 1 Sam. 26:5-11; Ps. 105:15);
• Fear (see Ps. 56:4,11; Prov. 29:25; 1 John 4:18);
• Not examining yourself before communion (see 1 Cor. 11:27-31): Ps. 105:15); • Fear (see Ps. 56:4,11; Prov. 29:25; 1 John 4:18); • Not examining yourself before communion (see 1 Cor. 11:27-31):
• Despising God’s Word (see Prov. 28:9); • Indifference (see Prov. 1:24-28);
• Neglect of mercy (see Prov. 21:13); • Not honoring one another (see Deut. 5:16; 1 Pet. 3:7);
• Idolatry, which is anything you worship above God (see Deut. 7:25,26; Josh. 7; Ezek. 14:3);
• Speaking evil of brethren (see Gal. 5:26; Jas. 4:11; 5:9).
In conclusion, some people don’t understand how significant it is to keep communication with God, and some people don’t know how to communicate with Him. Be on the lookout for the next blog post dealing with this prayer series.
Have you joined our Facebook group for women? CLICK THIS LINK to learn more.