Sometimes in life, our decision-making skills are somewhat questionable. Especially when we are in the midst of trying circumstances. We’ve prayed all we know how to do and instead of things getting better they only seem to be getting worse. It’s as if God put His earbuds in and is not hearing a word that we are praying. Is this really a fair assessment?
While going about my daily chores this morning, a question dropped in my spirit. “Why aren’t my prayers being answered?” This is a question many of us are asking today. I know that’s been a question I’ve been pondering now for awhile concerning two specific situations in my life. There was a time when I prayed and before getting off my knees the answer was given me. Now I feel like Samson when the Philistines fell upon him after Delilah cut his locks. I suppose the question now is…Why are my prayers failing in an area where at one point they were so effective?
“If we are to do the Lord’s work, and to do it successfully, we must have faith in him, we must look beyond ourselves, we must look beyond our commission, we must look beyond our personal qualifications, we must look beyond our former successes, we must look for a present anointing by the Holy Spirit, and by faith we must hang upon the living God from day to day.” —Charles SpurgeonThe Secret of Failure
I hope these examples will aid you in addressing some perplexing questions concerning unanswered prayers…
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” (Matthew 5:23-24 NIV) It is clear here that if you have unforgiveness in your heart you cannot present a gift or a prayer at the altar. Unforgiveness will block your prayer getting through. Unforgiveness is not for the other person, no, it is for you. Unforgiveness holds your spirit hostage and blocks your blessings at the same time. Not to mention, can manifest as many diseases. Let go and let God; so you can get a prayer through.
And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.” (Mark 9:28-29 NKJV) The disciples were perplexed because when the child with epilepsy was presented to them they prayed but had no results. Sometimes prayer is not enough. Sometimes the thing we are praying for or about may require we sacrifice by fasting. Jesus seldom referenced fasting in His ministry, but it must have been a significant tool in effective prayer for Him to mention it at this juncture. Turn over that plate and watch God turn over your situation.
When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. (James 4:3 NIV) This is the definition of “praying amiss.” When you go to God in prayer you must approach the throne of grace with clean hands and a pure heart.
If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? (I John 3:17 NIV) When you shut up your bowels of compassion in one area and then seek God in prayer in another it is self contradiction. Without compassion there is no love and without love there is no God. Because God is love. Again, it is the condition of one’s heart and motives in prayer. Bitterness will block your prayers.
But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. (James 1:6-8) You cannot be lackadaisical in your belief system. If you are you will self-sabotage your prayer. That’s why the scriptures tell us “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6 NIV)
Prayer: Father, teach me how to be a strong Christian Prayer Warrior. One that prays with powerful prayers in the War Room to overcome and defeat the enemy. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
See you next week for the conclusion. Until then…Blessings and Peace!
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