Praying Effectively-PART 1

Part 1- Diligence

One of the greatest realities of life on earth is the blessing of feeling good on all fronts; emotionally, physically, mentally, and most importantly, spiritually. There’s an old saying that states, ‘feeling good is everything!’ Well truthfully, our relationship with God is the ‘everything’ of life. Without it, we’ve got nothing to hold on to, so feeling good isn’t everything but it’s pretty high on the list. We all want to feel our best, but there are quite a few people that have never felt genuinely good about themselves or their lives. They’ve had feelings of sadness quite often and sometimes life feels like a chore. They are putting their best foot forward, but also wondering when things will get better. Praying for the same things for a while now, they’re about ready to throw in the towel because there’s been no movement. Is God listening, or could it be that there’s more to an effective prayer life than we’ve known?

There are some things that we pray for, and it doesn’t take a long time until the Lord brings them into fruition. But there are other prayer requests where this isn’t the case. These are very important to us. They are prayer requests for blessings that we really believe will fulfill our lives and bring us a lot of joy. It is an enigma to many of us why these, the desires we want most, can sometimes take a long while to come to pass. Maybe you’re a single person that has been praying a long time to meet someone compatible, or perhaps it’s a work situation that makes it almost unbearable to have peace. Marital problems and health issues can also persist, and many of us become weary when it appears these issues are not significantly improving.

The issue is never, ever that God is refusing to bless us. Psalm 84:11(NLT) tells us, “For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.” Heavenly Father is not in the business of withholding blessings. Some of us will entertain that line of thinking because it is easier to point the finger away from ourselves. We don’t want to think that there’s something we could be doing or not doing to prolong our blessings. If there is, we can be assured that Heavenly Father is helping us to open our eyes to what this might be.

In Matthew 7:7(NLT), Jesus Christ said “7 Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” This is the Lord’s instruction to us. This verse is very clear, and it is oblivious that God welcomes and wants our persistence in prayer. It isn’t about vain repetitions, just saying the same things over and over again, thinking that it impresses God. Jesus warned about this in Matthew 6:7. God is not moved by the number of times we say something in prayer. He’s looking at our hearts, examining our attitude and faith.

Each time we approach His throne of grace with humility and sincerity, and open our hearts to God, He responds to us. We may not feel or sense that something has transpired, but it has. Heavenly Father deposits something within us supernaturally when we have the right attitude and heart in prayer. He gives us something that helps us align ourselves so that our faith is increased, and we are in a better position to correct ourselves in areas we perhaps didn’t know we needed to correct.

With a thankful heart, and a resolute spirit, we must keep on asking, seeking, and knocking because all of these represent our obedience to be diligent in our pursuit of God. He tells us in Hebrews 11:6 that He is a Rewarder of our diligent effort. Diligent effort supports our faith and faith pleases Him.

One of the reasons this diligence is so important to God is because we have a tendency to prioritize our prayer requests and other things over our relationship with Him. He does not punish for this, instead, through our diligence and persistence in seeking Him, He helps us realign our priorities. Jesus Christ tells us in Matthew 6:33 that we must seek the Father’s Kingdom and righteousness first, above all things. God must come first, and this means you cannot put anything before Him. He cannot come in second place. His love, righteousness, majesty, sovereignty, glory, and power cannot be matched by anything or anyone else in all of eternity. He deserves first place! He must be given the greatest honor of which we can give, for again, this is what He deserves. When we acknowledge this, we position ourselves in alignment with the harmony of all that He has created.

Jesus Christ tells us the Will of God in John 14:12(NLT). He said, “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.” The Father is cultivating us. He’s got someplace for us to be. It’s not about our agenda, it’s about His. He is helping us so that our good works, ministries, and efforts surpass even the works of His Son. We are destined for greater works and our vision needs to expand so that our prayers are aligned with God’s Will. If we continue to be diligent, to keep on asking, seeking, and knocking, Heavenly Father will help us grow in faith. He will help us see what we need to change and give Him honor so that our prayers are effective, and we step into the overflow of His blessings.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

“Praying Effectively: Part 1- Diligence”, written by JMack,© 2021. All rights reserved. All praise and honor to God through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You for bountiful blessings. You said in Exodus 20:6(NLT), But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands.” Thank You for being faithful to Your Word. You have fought my battles, and I give glory and honor to Your Holy name. Thank You for all the times You’ve been there for me and my loved ones. Please forgive me for all the things I have said, thought, felt, and done that were contrary to Your Word and Will. Please help me to do and be better.

Thank You, for lavishing Your unfailing love upon us throughout generations that are too numerous to count. You never fail, falter, or disappoint. You are amazing and awesome, and we are privileged to be called Your sons and daughters. Thank You for working within me to will and do of Your good pleasure. I want to grow closer to the image of Christ with every effort I make. Help me, please, to be diligent and persistent in everything I do for Your Kingdom, so that it is pleasing to You. Open my eyes before I make the mistake of not putting You or seeking You first. I don’t want to make that mistake, because it is very costly. I desire to be continually led by the Spirit, and I thank You for teaching me to recognize his impetus and promptings.

Thank You, Father, for hearing my prayer and for forgiving me. I ask that You please strengthen me as I pursue the blessings You have made available. In the mighty name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.■

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