Wednesday Evening Service
It is God’s nature to hear and answer prayer. If our prayers are not answered, then there is likely some hindrance with the asker. The answer may not be what we want, but we should be able to get an answer.
One hindrance to prayer is a failure to ask, or to ask wrongly. Many times we think we already have the answer, and we just ask God to bring to pass what we want. This is telling, not asking. Our motto should be living and asking for others, not our own desires. Intercessory prayer is Scriptural.
We must not ask “amiss.” One meaning of “amiss” is “out of place;” meaning that God knows what we’re asking for is not what we really need. Another meaning of “amiss” is “perverse,” taking the place of God; we must be careful not to allow our possessions to possess us. A third meaning of “amiss” is “rashness;” God knows proper timing better than we do. Another meaning of “amiss” is “wicked,” meaning “divided” or “hypocritical.”
God enjoys blessing His children, and enjoys answering their prayers. We have much to praise God for. If we ask just for our own gratification, then we are asking amiss. God wants us to be content with Him. If we have a servant’s heart, then we won’t mind when God uses us.
Our prayers must be for the glory of God. His glory is the opposite of our selfishness. A prayer for revival should not be a selfish prayer for our own church’s numbers. A prayer for healing should not be a selfish prayer about keeping our friends and family with us. A prayer for power should not be about our happiness. It’s possible to ask for the right thing for the wrong reasons.
A second hindrance to prayer is neglecting the Bible. God hates the prayers of those who do not heed His Word. If we live His Word, then He will be able to guide our lives. God gives us things we don’t deserve; His Word must abide in us before prayer can be effective.
Salvation does not grant the privilege of commanding God to perform an obligation; rather, it grants us the privilege of humbly bringing our requests to God. We have no right to command God; we cannot “hold God to His Word.” He will not violate His Word, but we must have the right attitude in prayer. Once a Christian neglects the Bible, neglect of prayer shortly follows.
Sometimes we want things outside God’s plan. If we are walking in the light of His Word, then our prayers will be molded to His plan. Success starts with God’s Word.
Refraining from Bible study is equivalent to ceasing prayer. It allows a slow leak in one’s prayer life, eventually destroying it. A failure in prayer is a failure in devotions, and causes failures in other areas of our lives.