Back to the Basics in Prayer (Part 1)
I knew my prayer life was in trouble when it felt like I was doing all the talking. I wasn’t quite sure how God was going to answer my prayers, or how he was going to communicate with me. The Bible says ask and it shall be given. Well, I was asking, but the second part of that verse says seek, and you shall find (Matthew 7:7). I realized I needed to do some seeking on what was needed to communicate with God properly. In this post I’m going to talk about some of what I found was necessary to communicate properly with God.
This scripture was the beginning of my discovery.
Hebrews 11:6 A. “But without faith it is impossible to please Him,
B. for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that
C. He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him”.
When I would pray, I would always say, I believe, I have faith, and I know that I receive in Jesus’ name! But I wasn’t receiving, and I could not hear the voice of God.
A. But without faith it is impossible to please Him,
After reading Hebrews 11:6 I begin to ask myself these questions, and maybe you may need to ask yourself some of these same questions, or a variation to them.
What is faith and do I really have it? I went back to the Bible, 30 years ago. The Internet wasn't as assessable as it is now, where you just Google the question. What is Faith? I went to the back of the Bible, the concordance, and looked for the word faith. I read many scriptures on faith. When I came across Hebrews 11:1 I believe this gave me the definition of faith I needed. “Now faith is the assurance (title deed, confirmation) of things hoped for (divinely guaranteed), and the evidence of things not seen [the conviction of their reality—faith comprehends as fact what cannot be experienced by the physical senses]”.
After reading many translations of Hebrew 11:1, this version from the amplified Bible made it clearer to me. The first thing I needed to understand about prayer is that, if I pray, I must have faith to believe that whatever it is I am asking for by faith, I already have it. Even though it cannot be seen yet. I’ll ask you just as I asked myself. When you pray do you believe (have faith) to know when you ask, you shall receive? I was saying the right words. I would always say I believe, I have faith, and I know that I receive in Jesus’ name.
One of the problems I was having was that I did not believe that I already had them. Even though they were not seen, and my faith in God would produce what it was I was believing God for. I had to change my perspective about prayer. Here are some additional scriptures that I studied about faith and allowing God to increase my faith. He did it for me and he will do the same thing for you. The Bible also tells us in Romans 10:17 that faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God. The more word you hear, the more effective your prayer life will be.
For in this hope we were saved; but hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he can already see?
2 Corinthians 4:18
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 5:7
For we walk by faith, not by sight.
To conclude part 1 of this lesson, read how James described his faith in James 2:17. “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. 18 But someone will say, You have faith and I have deeds(actions). Show me your faith without deeds(actions), and I will show you my faith by my deeds.”
Another point I have learned is, faith by itself is dead. God does not do what we are able to do, and we cannot do what only God is able to do. There is a difference.
Incorporate some of these scriptures and practices in your life over the next few days, and come back to let me know if they were helpful.