When you pray for something, how do you know when the answer is yes, no, wait, or no, I’ve got something better?

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When you pray for something, how do you know when the answer is yes, no, wait, or no, I’ve got something better?

Post by Admin on Tue Jan 26, 2016 1:43 am

One of the beauties of the Christian life is of the Father who invites His children to share their desires, needs and concerns with Him: Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need—Hebrews 4:14-16. And, as a result of prayer, we are offered an amazing, joyful benefit of the Christian life: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus—Paul, Philippians 4:6-7. But there is no magic, no automatic roadmap to knowing—at least in an intellectual sense—what the answer might be, yet God does make it clear to us. He wants us to be where He wants us to be, and He wants us to know where He wants us to be. The reality is, as Paul said, We live by faith, not by sight—Paul, II Corinthians 5:7. A couple things happen when we pray: (1) We are handing our prayer over to God as a statement of faith; in other words, “God, I know I can trust you to do the very best of what is possible with this situation, or question, or concern (or whatever).” And (2) We are turning over title. God now owns whatever it is we have prayed for. That is why we can be “anxious for nothing”; that is why a peace beyond our imagination can settle over us. Then we simply trust that God will move, through planting thoughts and directions in our minds, giving us a calm in our souls (our insides), that “fill-in-the-blank” is the right thing to do. Some examples:
(1) Finding our house on Osceola.
(2) The pastoral possibility in Colorado.
(3) Leading our church to replant here at 800 Vermillion.
(4) Praying for Naomi Latt and Pat Melbourne.
The overreaching thing? The apostle John nailed it: This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us—I John 5:14. If we pray as the Son prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, [N]ot my will, but yours be done—Jesus Christ, Luke 22:42b, those are the prayers in which God delights. And there are a couple of things we can always know about Him:
(1) We know He loves us: I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness—God speaking, Jeremiah 31:3.
(2) We know He knows our needs before we do: And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him—Jesus Christ, the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 6:7-8.
Then we can rest in Him, like laying in a hammock, and wait on Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen—Paul, Ephesians 3:20-21. As we grow in Christ, filled with His Holy Spirit, we learn more how to listen for Him, how to sense where He is going, how to sense when to wait, how to know where He is leading. In His great love, I have found Him more than able to bring me to His place, wherever that was.

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