How to Pray

“Ask, and the gift is yours. Seek, and you’ll discover. Knock, and the door will be opened for you.” —Matthew 7:7 TPT

Most of us know the verse above by heart, or at least have heard it recited at church or on social media. It seems so simple, so cut and dry. If I ask God for ____ I’ll receive it?! That’s all I have to do?!

Throughout my life I have prayed in different ways and for different things. Typically, what I was taught at each church I attended built upon the next. Just as our maturity in Christ should be ever-growing and expanding upward, so my knowledge and experience about prayer equally grew.

That being said, I’m still just a babe in my understanding of it! And my recent spiritual setback hasn’t exactly helped. But I feel it in my heart to share the things that I have learned in the hopes that you would avoid some of my frustrations and misunderstanding concerning how to pray, how to hear, and how to receive.

So here it goes! Let’s take a look at some more verses on the matter:

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us” (1 John 5:14)

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people” (Ephesians 6:18)

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” (Philippians 4:6)

…The list goes on, following a theme of thankfulness and faith with the promise that God hears and desires that we live a prayerful life.

But then we find verses like this:

“…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 ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures” (James 4:3)

There are more verses supporting that prayers made by a wicked heart (unrepentant) and intent are not heard by God. But also that those who do not listen to God are in turn ignored during their time of desperation.

“…And just as He called and they would not listen, so they called and I would not listen…” (Zechariah 7:13)

This of course supports the notion that prayer and its success is dependent upon our relationship with God. Certainly at the very least, we cannot expect to hear God if we can’t even recognize His inner voice. This only comes through relationship and if you want to know Him and His voice—that first comes from reading His Word.

So let’s review our list so far of what we have learned about prayer:

1. It requires relationship. Obviously there are circumstances God has heard and responded to the prayers of those who have yet to truly walk with God. Such as children, or those who just began their Christian walk. God is merciful after all.

2. It requires humility and a truly repentant heart. In other words, someone who is saved and whose motives are pure-minded. God isn’t a magical wish granter, but Almighty and worthy of our respect and reverence. You can’t fool Him with dishonesty (He sees the heart behind your words).

3. It requires trust (Faith). Surprise! Not. You have to stand on His truth and His promises. To doubt in His ability, goodness, or willingness is to place more faith in the devil and his schemes. It is to fear (misplaced worship) the devil more so than God. Be honest about this with God and pray for more faith and belief. Read God’s word to grow your faith!

4. It requires the Spirit. The Spirit is God with us. Oftentimes your prayer’s answer and even someone else’s! will come through the Spirit in that He is the bridge or conduit between God and man. Prayer isn’t usually a disembodied letter we speak out, seal up, and send to the stars. In fact, it’s a conversation, a back and forth banter between friends. To pray without ceasing it literally to talk/listen to the Spirit and for Him to respond through his inner voice or through His leadings. Deeper but not unlike how you would speak to your spouse or close friend. The Spirit also prays on our behalf when we don’t have the words.

5. It requires thankfulness/praise. Many verses tie the two together. And even Jesus demonstrated this to His disciples when He taught them the Lord’s Prayer. Begin every prayer with praise, not just because it gives glory where it’s due, but because it re-centers your heart on peace and joy (the blessings you have already been given). A life of thankfulness leads to a joy that is not dependent on prayer’s response.

So in summary, to know God is to share His Heart and Will. Prayers that are non-selfish and pure are heard by the Lord.

A born again believer carries the Holy Spirit within them which means that they carry salvation (when God looks at you He doesn’t see your sin or old self, but Jesus). As well as the ability to not only hear God, and feel His leadings, but to even be the answer to prayer in one another’s lives. We have authority paid for by Jesus to do many things. Among which include (cast out demons and heal the body).

The believer who studies and reads God’s Word, the Bible, grows in relationship and recognition of His voice (discernment). The Word also has power when spoken aloud and memorized (stored in the mind to be used later as fiery weapons against the enemy).

The prayerful believer is one who is always aware of God (Holy Spirit within) and talking/listening to Him as if He were beside you. Just as with a best friend, you aren’t always speaking but you’re always aware of each other’s presence.

And lastly, the prayerful believer lives a life of faith and trust in their best friend, and putting to work their faith, and recognizing all that God has done for them, both seen and unseen—this proves He is all that He says He is.

I want to finish with a thought that struck me today. And that is:

God doesn’t respond to our need. He responds to our Faith.

I believe that my problem as well as many of you reading, is that we ask God out of desperation and want and speak to Him very little the rest of the time. We come trembling before Him, not over our reverence for Him but over the crushing weight of our trials. We doubt. We disbelieve, we pray as a last resort and not our first go to.

We set expectations on God in how He will answer us when really our only expectation should be that He will answer. Faith is simply expecting God to move and trusting that He will provide at just the right time (which usually isn’t on our timing) and in His own way (for He knows what’s best for us).

It’s like taking a leap off of a cliff knowing He will catch us. Or like, in the Bible, Abraham, knife poised ready to kill his son because he believed God would fulfill His promise and save him in time.

Our trust and faith should be just as unwavering and sure. And let me tell you, it will look like insanity to the world who craves assurance, tangible, and scientific fact.

My prayer to all of you is that you will prioritize prayer and Bible reading again in your lives. The world craves it even though they do not know what they want and need. Times are darkening before us and we must choose to either fade into the black or shine brighter still with the truth of Jesus and the works of His Holy Spirit within us.

Reflect on the prayers you have uttered. What was your heart posture behind them? Did you have expectations or doubts? Did you thank God first? Did you come to Him as a first or last resort? Did you listen to His response or leading in your spirit? Did you fail to see His response because you had preconceived ideas of how He would answer you and by which method that answer would come?

Keep and open mind, journal your prayers, and make it a conversation again instead of a formal long distance affair.

God hears you…

He is always speaking to you…

And…He loves you.

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Ishmael

(God speaking to Hagar) “This son of yours will be a wild man, as untamed as a wild donkey! He will raise his fist against everyone, and everyone will be against him. Yes, he will live in open hostility against all his relatives.” (Genesis 16:12)

It all started with a promise. God told Abraham and Sarah that they would bear a child and through him God would bring forth His people (descendants as numerous as the stars).

And like many of God’s chosen in the Bible, Abraham slipped up—BIG time. He grew impatient and decided to take things into his own hands. So he took Hagar (Sarah’s Egyptian slave) and conceived a child with her, named Ishmael.

Years later, Sarah finally became pregnant and Isaac (God’s promised child) was born. This created a problem that Abraham was forced to solve: which child will his descendants come from?

8 …on the day Isaac was weaned Abraham held a great feast. 9 But Sarah saw that the son whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham(B) was mocking,(C) 10 and she said to Abraham, “Get rid of that slave woman(D) and her son, for that woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with my son Isaac.”(E)

11 The matter distressed Abraham greatly because it concerned his son.(F) 12 But God said to him, “Do not be so distressed about the boy and your slave woman. Listen to whatever Sarah tells you, because it is through Isaac that your offspring[a] will be reckoned.(G) 13 I will make the son of the slave into a nation(H) also, because he is your offspring.” (Genesis 21)

There are two things I want to clarify by God’s words here: the first, is that He loves Ishmael and Hagar. Just as Abraham loves them (Ishmael is now 13 years old).

Hagar took her son into the desert and when their water ran out, they began to cry. God was with them:

17 God heard the boy crying, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What is the matter, Hagar? Do not be afraid; God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. 18 Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation.”

19 Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. So she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink.

God continued to protect and bless Ishmael who grew up in the desert, became an archer, settled in Mecca, and married an Egyptian woman.

The second point we can glean from these passages is that God gave Ishmael his own inheritance and promise. He is so faithful that even in our mistakes—He forgives and pours out blessings upon us. Abraham made a mistake in sleeping with Hagar but Ishmael was not a mistake!

Abraham was forgiven and Ishmael would be blessed with a great nation just like Isaac. In essence, God expanded upon His promise to include Ishmael because he was Abraham’s son. The only divide was that his descendants would not become the Israelites (God’s chosen people).

Instead, they would become the Arabic nation.

That is why the Quran (the Islamic holy book) holds Ishmael as a prophet and messenger. Although, even there, little is said about him except (in their words) that he helped Abraham build the Kaaba, regarded as the most sacred structure on earth to those of the Muslim faith (britannica.com).

Other Islamic books give more information—contradictory to what the Bible explains. For example; that Abraham tried to sacrifice Ishmael instead of Isaac.

In the back of your mind I know you are probably thinking; “the sins of the father weren’t quite forgotten..” To look at the Arabic nation today, we have seen hostility, death, destruction, and pain—very much like what God said of Ishmael before he was born.

But, Ishmael still had a choice, as did his descendants. They might not have been God’s chosen people in the beginning but nor were we. When Jesus came, He brought salvation and reconciliation to all people from all nations (Jew and Gentile alike).

Would his descendants become one family again? Would they let go of the belief that they were supposed to be “the chosen ones” the “fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham?”

No. But that doesn’t mean that God isn’t working to save them. Many are giving their lives to Christ even now amidst so much strife and fear. They are fighting against this deep-seated hatred that has been passed down through generations and trying to find peace and freedom.

I say all of this to remind us, as Christians, to love our neighbors. Even our enemies. In many ways we are being dehumanized—it is so vital that we do not do the same to those we are called to love. Or did Christ not love us even when we were still His enemies?

“For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12)

Our battle is a spiritual one and our commission is still to save as many lost souls as we (Christ in us) can until Jesus returns.

So please, brothers and sisters, now is the time to pray for Afghanistan and those who have converted to Christianity and are currently hiding. Pray that the transforming love of Christ would reach more and more, and for divine protection against the devil’s schemes (working through the hearts of man).

Pray for the children (the future), that their eyes would be opened and they would finally put an end to the slaughter and generational sin of their people and find Jesus.

Pray even for the Taliban, that they would be radically saved and lay down their weapons.

There is still hope that many more will come to know Christ and a revival will spread throughout the region despite the spiritual battle against it. That is one unique attribute of Christianity—it grows under pressure.

My Provider

 

 

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God IS our provider…saying that is one thing, believing it is another. When you pray do you do so with doubt? Do you repeat your prayers in desperation, just in case God didn’t hear you the first time, or several? I have the assurance that God not only hears my prayers but that it is His delight to answer them. He is a Father who loves to bless His children, and that has been proven in my life, time and again.

We can get so hung up on the prayers that haven’t yet been answered (or have without our knowing yet), forgetting the countless daily yearnings of our hearts that God satisfies. We can go as basic as you want with this, right down to what we need each day to survive. Starting in that place and counting our many blessings we can then move on from surviving to thriving. Just ask yourself this question, “If God hears my small prayers, how much more does He hear my BIG prayers, my deepest longings, and dreams?

A parent automatically cares for their child’s basic needs, and in a healthy home where the parent is meeting those needs, a child automatically trusts in the parent’s ability to provide them. Why then do we struggle with this concept? We openly profess God as our Father and yet we do not trust Him with that role.

In all honesty, God could have stopped at us calling Him friend, and yet He took it farther in taking the position of Father. A friend is there for you, a Father provides for you. Traditionally, it was the sole role of the Father to provide for His family. He was the breadwinner, the one who brought home the bacon, so to speak. Not that the mother couldn’t also generate wealth, but even she depended greatly on her husband. That is why many widows back in Biblical times were poor and needy. Without a husband, the church was commanded to take on that role, proving that no matter what storms come our way, the Will of God is always to provide and protect.

And so, whenever you start to fear or doubt that God hears your prayers, make a list of all that you have been given, of your many daily needs that have been met whether you prayed for them or not, of the countless times God came through for you, maybe through someone else, and you didn’t recognize it as a God-thing.

I will share some examples with you of times God was my provider, times when He proved He was listening to me, even when I thought my prayers or desires were too small for Him to notice.

Here recently, even as I type, there is a large blizzard blowing through Ohio. Our electric bill has been outrageous due to the cold temperatures and our home’s poor insulation. Aaron did some research and discovered that a pellet stove was our best option. Unfortunately to buy one and install it was pretty expensive and we have been trying to save money. Aaron randomly brought up the subject at work to his boss, and to our amazement, his boss immediately offered to give us his pellet stove that was in perfect condition, sitting unused for years in storage.

Now as I type this, with the temperatures dropping and the blizzard getting deadly outside, I am quite warm because a large pellet stove is burning just to my right. God IS my provider. As far as I can remember, Aaron and I hadn’t even prayed for a pellet stove, it was just something we longed for. What escaped our minds didn’t escape God’s.

Another recent blessing, God has blessed us with a vacation to Florida. Feb. 22, will be Aaron and I’s 5 year wedding anniversary and we had been wanting to do something special for the occasion. The only thing I could come up with in Ohio was staying at a cabin for a couple nights in the freezing weather. I didn’t pray for a trip to the beach, but I longed for it. The ocean is my favorite place, and my favorite beach is on Captiva Island off the coast of Fort Myers.

Thanks to God-established connections we were able to find a cheaper avenue to travel and stay in Florida for a few days. And my seemingly small concerns, like about what to do with my dog Kota have been pacified as well. God wants us to celebrate! And we want more than anything for this trip to be a time spent with Him, rededicating our lives to Him as a couple.

These are just a few of the many monthly and daily ways God reminds me that He is my provider and that He hears my every prayer. Trust in Him, even if you don’t get an answer right away, some of the best things in life take time. I never knew that I would meet such a Godly man like Aaron. We were both quite young when we met, and young when we married, and yet looking back I know that God had set it all in motion. He had picked out someone for me and it took me a while to realize it, to let go of things that weren’t “God’s best” for me. I am glad He made me wait, that He withheld something till I was ready to fully receive it.

Part of being the best gift giver is knowing when the right time is to give the gift. Trust God with your prayers, your dreams, and your desires…He will respond and provide. He will give you what you are ready to receive. And when you look back, you will be all the more amazed at how Good He IS.

How has God provided for you?

 

Through It All

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“Through it all, my eyes are on you, and it is well with me…”

-“It is Well” by Bethel Music

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t believe in God. I’ve had my doubts about His Goodness, but not about His existence. I simply can’t imagine not believing, nor waking up to His presence. He has been as fixed as the sun, a constant reality regardless of those who have tried to say otherwise. Once you have experienced and felt His presence, you can’t go back to a world without Him. A world devoid of any lasting meaning apart from Him. He was my friend when I felt insecure and misunderstood, and it was through Him I set my dreams.

I wish I could tell you that the Christian life is easy, but the truth is it’s the harder paths that are worth travelling. They are the paths that promise reward, adventure, and personal growth which only happens through the facing and overcoming of challenges. It’s this path that the Bible describes as “narrow” that few walk down, but their destiny is Heaven and they never walk it alone.

Loneliness, fear, anger, depression…can seem like impossible giants in this life. From a distance, they can appear more manageable than in those moments when they are wrapped around you weighing you down like so many bricks. Sometimes it starts out as a small burden, a single stone placed in your heart that begins to multiply with each day or experience. I find myself doing this…I turn from God and get swept up in life and satan attacks. He is like a wolf, always circling, patient and calculated. He waits for that moment of weakness and makes his move.  That is why he is the lowliest of creatures, he fights in the shadows because he fears the light. In the light, his tricks are revealed and his cover blown. We face an enemy who can only try and deceive us, our biggest battle is this- “Do we listen?”

What I am about to share with you is a piece of my story. Maybe you are the one who is broken, feeling like no one will ever truly know you. How can God fill me? Make me whole again? you ask. The answer; one day at a time.

I grew up in an upper-middle-class school, though far from town and located amidst farmer fields, the students there were hardly the country type. Sports and popularity were everything, as well as how “rich” you were. I was a shy girl who liked hanging with boys and picking up bugs. I started off having trouble finding good friends. As the years passed I had lost many “friends” and had been bullied off by students and teachers alike. I began doubting myself, my abilities to communicate, and this grew with each passing grade. I never got to sing a solo in choir, and one time when I won a pie-selling contest my mom had to put up with angry parents saying that I didn’t deserve to win because I was open enrolled. Once middle school came, life was unbearable. Teachers belittled and called me names and the students pretended as though I wasn’t there. I had to sit at the boy table at lunch and couldn’t wait to go home. I didn’t know this at the time, but I was deeply affected by those experiences. Satan was on a mission to destroy my identity.

Thankfully, life turned around and just in time. I was put in a different school and found the best friends I could ever ask for. I learned to speak and laugh and couldn’t wait to go to school. Math was still difficult but I wasn’t treated differently because of it. Teachers loved me and I was hard pressed to find any student who treated me bad.

Notice how my life changed. We are often moulded and influenced by our surroundings and circumstances, often it’s unavoidable. Was it the end of my heartache? No, life always seems to have a way of building you up and tearing you down. We must learn to focus on something constant or we will be pulled along the tides of life, and become swallowed by our emotions. God has been my constant help, my comforter, and my friend. He makes the storms of life bearable and even beautiful. Everything He touches suddenly has meaning and purpose. And he restores all that was lost tenfold.

So no matter what you are going through, no matter what has happened in your past. You don’t have to carry that burden anymore. It’s not the end of your story. God was with you in every moment. I prayed to Him often in those lonely days..I felt loved and accepted by Him even when outwardly I was alone. He is the closest friend you’ll ever have, he knows your heart and who you truly are. He speaks life-giving words over you, drowning out the hurtful things that life has tried to brand you with. He’s beside you always. Through it all, you’re never alone.

That is why I can say, “it is well with my soul.”

 

 

The Refuge

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How important is prayer? It seems that prayer is losing its potency in our culture. Mass shootings, murder, suicide…where is God? Now, we see that even churches aren’t safe from the world’s sin. But again I ask you, how important is prayer? Before you answer, I want to ask one more question, what have you been praying for? Now, if you are full of doubt in prayer but willing to accept a truth that is painful, keep reading. However, if you don’t believe in prayer and these three points listed below then please, seek God and have Him walk you through healing…because something happened in your life that made prayer seem impossible or powerless and until you believe in it again, you won’t be able to study it with an open mind. My three points are, what I believe to be truths, supported biblically and demonstrated in my life, they are as follows:

  1. God works through us
  2. Prayer releases power
  3. We carry power and authority

So what do you pray for? What do you pray for as a church? I know for me, I pray mostly about those in my life, situations that are close to me and are on my heart. I might pray a quick prayer for the rest of the world and pray a little longer when I hear something on the news that is troubling or disastrous. As a church, we pray for members of the body who are sick or need a breakthrough. We pray for the surrounding community and for the lost. But rarely have I heard this prayer, “Lord, protect our church from the lies of the enemy, from any form of harm he intends to send against us, God, if anyone intends harm towards us, I declare that their hearts be transformed and their eyes opened to the truth and the great love of Jesus, amen.”

Most prayers sound quite different, we pray for the lost that they would come through our doors, we ask God for a servants heart, we pray for specific members of the body that they would be restored and delivered from evil only after something manifests itself in their lives visibly. I have seen churches completely consumed with self-righteousness that they don’t feel the need for protection, and churches so set on servanthood that they neglect the health and safety of the body, leaving no one fit to protect the gate from the wolves.

My uncle used to have a large yard. He would mow it as my aunt would tend to the garden. Every day he would sit on his deck and survey his land for unwelcome guests. It wouldn’t be long before he would spot a groundhog waddling towards his garden, digging and eating all the while. My uncle would instantly take action, he would grab his rifle and put the creature out of commission. My uncle killed a lot of vermin in his life, and his garden and yard remained peaceful and safe whilst he was there.

Who protects the church from satan’s tricks? Who has discernment in your church to alert the body to danger? Who carries the rifle, and makes the tough decisions regarding the safety of the flock? Who, deals with the wolves?

Oh, how important prayer is…how often do I blame God for something in my life…and then see the truth, I didn’t pray for those things! How can God bless me and answer a prayer that I never uttered? And if I did speak of it, did I really ask? Did I contend for it? Did I believe in it? As Christians, we have become so desensitized to the violence of the world, so used to satan triumphing that we have forgotten who we are! We pray with a sense of hopelessness, a begging for change, forgetting that we might just be the answer to our prayers! God wants to use us to change the world, He has given us the Holy Spirit and the authority to take back this fallen place. But we can’t do that until we remember who we are again. We need to wake up and put a foot down. We need to pray with authority, believing that our words have power and speak into things before they happen. Pray for your church! Bind up evil spirits before they set foot upon your stair. Speak life over the country, don’t speak curses! Don’t aide in the world’s destruction, but in its renewal. Prayer is important, but I dare take it farther…it is VITAL!

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, I will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

2 Chronicles 7:14

Last Resort

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It is sad to think that many Christians still face uncertainty when it comes to the power of prayer. Do we really believe in prayer or is it done out of obligation? It seems prayer is often our last resort, as many times we have heard the line, “..the least we can do is pray.” Has prayer really been lowered so much that it is the “least” we can do? I am not downplaying the great need for Christians to actually take action in transforming cities and nations, but prayer is equally important! Imagine running into battle without your armor, or jumping off a cliff without a parachute…it is through prayer we are made ready to act.

The Holy Spirit strengthens and guides us through prayer….He opens doors and prepares the way through our prayers! We cannot do it alone, that is why Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit…to be our helper and instructor so that when we do take action we actually make a difference, because lets face it, offering the lost “humanity” never fixes the problem…it’s a spiritual issue that causes most worldly pain and destruction, and though humanity is important to survival, spiritual wellness is important for living. That is why people don’t understand when they see a wealthy man who is depressed or a poor man who is happy, having everything you need physically guarantees only bodily survival, not spiritual fulfilment.

As people of Faith, we need to remember that prayer is powerful. And even more specifically..that our words are powerful, as Proverbs 18:21 says, “The tongue has the power of life and death..” Our words can either bring life or death to others. Yikes! This is an essential lesson for us all, especially here in America where we have abused the freedom of speech often by saying whatever we like regardless of who our words sting. Words are so powerful we often write them on our hearts as part of our identity. For example, a child being told he is stupid generally ends up believing he is stupid..carrying that word with him throughout his school career, failing his classes and limiting his dreams to what that word will allow. The words we write upon our hearts are hard to erase, how strange it is, that they leave our mouths quickly with ease, yet torment for years in their wake.

It was by the spoken word of God the world came into existence, and yet we still don’t believe that being made in God’s image, our words have power. Prayer can do what our hands can’t, and It’s time we recognize its importance in our lives again. I know part of the reason prayer has lost its vigor is because we live in an era that believes the spiritual works of God no longer exist. We read story after story about Jesus’s disciples doing miraculous works, such as healing the sick and raising the dead, and we think, “man…too bad that isn’t possible today.” But where is the biblical proof that it is not possible? Never did the Bible say that the spiritual gifts had died, or would cease in the times to come, in fact, there is a prophecy spoken by Joel that supports the latter, “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams.” In other words, God’s not dead and nor are his works.

We place God in a box by our disbelief in his limitless abilities. Teaching people about God rarely ever brings them to salvation, it’s by an experience of God that their hearts are transformed and they are left with a lasting impression of God’s great love for them. If knowledge of God was all there was, then no one would be changed..even the demons know the bible, and notice..it doesn’t change them. That is why the spiritual gifts are so important! they bring about heavenly encounters and reveal the heart of the Father towards His people.

How do we awaken the spiritual gifts in our lives and in the church? I believe that it is through prayer we grow in our relationship with God and receive spiritual gifts like speaking in tongues, healing, and prophecy. It takes trust on both ends, we have to trust God, and God has to trust us and that we are ready for what he gives us. This goes for every blessing we receive in life…if we are not ready for it we may abuse it or take it for granted. With each blessing/gift comes responsibility, like the parable of the three servants in Matthew 15:14-30, when we receive, we must be faithful with what we have been given and it will be multiplied.

Prayer is the key, it is not the last resort. Therefore, we must be, “..Joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12)

More verses on prayer: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, Philippians 4:6-7, Mark 11:24, James 5:16