Spoiler Alert: You do not receive answers to prayer through the eloquence, length, or sheer volume of your spoken prayers. Nor does God answer prayers more readily just because you happen to have a degree behind your name, wear a clerical collar or call yourself a prayer warrior. This may come as a bit of a shock, but it really doesn’t matter to God how long you have walked with Him. All He looks for is childlike faith and a confident belief that He is good and that He is for us and not against us. He will answer the desperate prayer of a backslidden addict who huddles in the shadows of a back alley as much as He will answer the prayer of a preacher wearing skinny jeans standing on a perfectly lit church platform.
Excerpt from Dare to Call Him Friend by Katherine Walden, available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats.
“In the early days of the Internet, before Social Media, I provided a forum on my website for prayer requests. An automated email responded to each request, assuring the sender that dedicated intercessors were praying. One morning, I received a reply to the automated email. The sender kindly told me that my prayers were ineffective. She then went on to reassure me; she had submitted her request to many other prayer ministries before God finally answered her prayers through the intercession of a better-known ministry.
I giggled with amusement as I replied to her email. I truly rejoiced with her. God had brought resolution to a very difficult situation. Who is to say that one person’s prayers were more powerful than another? I was just grateful God came through for her.
If the release of God’s power is dependent on me coming up with just the right combination of words strung together to form a prayer, then the world is in a sorry state. I place my faith and trust in God, who promises me that His word will not return void. (Isaiah 55:11) There is no greater joy for me than seeing God’s transforming power unleashed in the life of another as I pray for them. However, it’s all about Him and not about me.
I regularly come across Christians who believe that if they attend enough crusade meetings and call enough prayer lines, they’ll find the peace that they desperately seek. My heart weeps for them as they are missing the point. When we expect another person to be our source of peace, affirmation, and assurance, we will always be disappointed. Our hope must rest in Him, the unchanging, sturdy as a rock, safe in any storm God.
The shed blood of Jesus gives us full access to the throne room. God waits for us there, longing to draw us close to His heart. He alone can bring peace to our troubled hearts. When we realize that God is the source of all good things in our lives, we wean ourselves from unhealthy dependencies on our brothers and sisters in Christ.
Am I advocating a “Just me and Jesus” gospel? By all means, no! We need the counsel, wisdom, and encouragement of the body of Christ. I believe it is impossible to flourish as a Christian without being in fellowship with other believers. It is wise to seek confirmation from trusted advisors and counsellors, but it is just as foolish to not seek God’s guidance first.”
Hebrews 10:19-23 – “Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.”
Every Monday at 5:30 PM MDT, I host an informal discussion group on the Zoom platform. You are most welcome to join us. We are currently beginning a series on prayer. Please use the contact form to message me with your email address and a brief explanation of why you’d like to join in if you have not contacted me already. I will have a waiting room enabled. If I don’t recognise you, I won’t add you to the call to ensure the safety and privacy of the group.
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From November 2020 forward, all Bible verses attributed to the NASB version unless otherwise indicated.
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Until Next Week,
©2021 Katherine Walden