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In Partnership With God

Read: Matthew 6:5-15

Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. —Matthew 6:8

A man had transformed an over grown plot of ground into a beautiful garden and was showing a friend what he had accomplished. Pointing to a bed of flowers, he said, "Look at what I did here." His companion corrected him, "You mean, 'Look at what God and I did here.'" The gardener replied, "I guess you're right. But you should have seen the shape this plot was in when He was taking care of it by Himself."

We chuckle at the man's reply, but it expresses a wonderful spiritual truth—we are co-workers with God. This applies to every area of life, including prayer. It answers a question that naturally comes to mind when we reflect on Jesus' statements in Matthew 6. He said we don't need to pray on and on with vain repetitions like the pagans, because our Father knows what we need before we ask (Matthew 6:7-8).

The question is, then, why pray? The answer is simple and comforting. God has graciously chosen to give us the privilege of being His partners in both the physical and spiritual areas of life. Through prayer we work with Him in defeating the powers of evil and in bringing about the fulfillment of His loving purposes in the world. Partners with God—what a privilege! What an incentive to pray! —Herb Vander Lugt

Although God knows our every need,
His work He wants to share;
He takes us into partnership
By calling us to prayer. —D. De Haan

God's work is done by those who pray.

From: Our Daily Bread


Pigeon Walk

Read: Daniel 6:1-10

He knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom. —Daniel 6:10

Have you ever wondered why a pigeon walks so funny? It's so it can see where it's going. A pigeon's eyes can't focus as it moves, so the bird actually has to bring its head to a complete stop between steps in order to refocus. It proceeds clumsily—head forward, stop, head back, stop.

In our spiritual walk with the Lord, we have the same problem as the pigeon: We have a hard time seeing while we're on the go. We need to stop between steps—to pause and refocus on the Word and the will of God. That's not to say we have to pray and meditate about every little decision in life. But certainly our walk with the Lord needs to have built into it a pattern of stops that enable us to see more clearly before moving on.

Daniel's practice of praying three times a day was an essential part of his walk with God (Daniel 6:10). He knew there's a certain kind of spiritual refocusing that we can't do without stopping. His stops gave him a very different kind of walk—one that was obvious to those around him.

What about us? At the risk of being thought of as different, as Daniel was, let's learn this valuable lesson from the pigeon: "Looking good" isn't nearly as important as "seeing well." —Mart De Haan

There is a blessed calm at eventide
That calls me from a world of toil and care;
How restful, then, to seek some quiet nook
Where I can spend a little time in prayer. —Bullock

Time in Christ's service requires time out for renewal.

From: Our Daily Bread


When It's Hard To Pray

Read: Romans 8:26-27

There is not a word on my tongue, but behold, O Lord, You know it altogether. —Psalm 139:4

The Bible tells us that God knows our every thought and every word on our tongue (Psalm 139:1-4). And when we don't know what to pray for, the Holy Spirit "makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered" (Romans 8:26).

These biblical truths assure us that we can have communication with God even without a word being spoken, because He knows the intentions and desires of our heart. What a comfort when we are perplexed or in deep distress! We don't have to worry if we can't find the words to express our thoughts and feelings. We don't have to feel embarrassed if sometimes our sentences break off half-finished. God knows what we were going to say. We don't have to feel guilty if our thoughts wander and we have to struggle to keep our minds focused on the Lord.

And for that matter, we don't have to worry about a proper posture in prayer. If we are elderly or arthritic and can't kneel, that's okay. What God cares about is the posture of our heart.

What a wonderful God! No matter how much you falter and stumble in your praying, He hears you. His heart of infinite love responds to the needs and emotions of your own inarticulate heart. So keep on praying! —Vernon Grounds

Prayer is the soul's sincere desire,
Unuttered or expressed,
The motion of a hidden fire
That trembles in the breast. —Montgomery

Prayer does not require eloquence but earnestness.

From: Our Daily Bread


Prayer-Meeting Blues

Read: Psalm 102:1-17

Hear my prayer, O Lord, and let my cry come to You. —Psalm 102:1

Prayer meetings can get you down. No matter how much you look forward to gathering with friends to pray, the requests can be disheartening. A missionary is having health problems. A child has cancer. A couple from your Sunday school class is getting a divorce. The missionary appointee is having difficulty raising financial support. And you have struggles of your own. The more requests you hear, the more weary you grow.

But then a mighty prayer warrior begins to pray. With confidence, he thanks God for His absolute control over all things. With tears, he pleads with God to work in the lives of those for whom prayer is requested. With honesty, he acknowledges that we don't always understand what God is doing. Like the psalmist, he turns a time of complaining over man's problems into a time of praising God for His listening ear. Prayer turns to praise because one saint believes that the Lord hears "the prayer of the destitute, and shall not despise their prayer" (Psalm 102:17).

Are you struggling with difficulties in your own life or the overwhelming problems of dear friends and loved ones? Learn to hand them over to the everlasting God. That's how to drive away those prayer-meeting blues. —Dave Branon

Praise God's holy name forever!
There is none that can compare
To the blessing of His presence
When we meet with Him in prayer. —Anon.
 

Although the outlook may be bleak, the uplook is always bright.

From: Our Daily Bread


Prayer Devotions

Ps 66:20 Blessed be God, Who has not turned away my prayer, Nor His mercy from me. NKJV
 
One of the stories that comes to my mind when I think about prayer is the story of Gideon in Judges 6:36-40.
 
So Gideon said to God, "If You will save Israel by my hand as You have said-- look, I shall put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that You will save Israel by my hand, as You have said." And it was so. When he rose early the next morning and squeezed the fleece together, he wrung the dew out of the fleece, a bowlful of water. Then Gideon said to God, "Do not be angry with me, but let me speak just once more: Let me test, I pray, just once more with the fleece; let it now be dry only on the fleece, but on all the ground let there be dew." And God did so that night. It was dry on the fleece only, but there was dew on all the ground. NKJV
  
To me this is a classic example of what most of us struggle with daily in our walk with God and our prayer life. We all "know" that God hears us and answers our prayers, yet for some reason we still have a hard time accepting His answers. That’s the reason we have put this page in our site. 
 
Romans 10:17 tells us that "faith comes from hearing and hearing by the word of God." So it is our hope that the testimonies on this page of Gods word spoken through prayer will increase our faithfulness in all aspects of our prayer life as it did Gideons.
  
After Gideon received twice an answer to his prayer, his faith was such that he rose early to receive the promise of the Lord.(Judges7:1) Gideons faith was strengthened that he stood firm as the Lord reduced the army of 32,000 to 300 men without ever questioning the Lord. (Judges7:2-7) Gideons faith was such that although he was afraid, he did not back peddle but followed every provision the Lord put before him in full belief.(Judges7:9-25)
 
Gideons story shows us that not only answered prayer, but the affirmation of it causes our faith to be strengthened. We pray you find strength as Gideon did, in the affirmation of Gods word spoken through answered prayer. And God said, “Let there be light, and there was light.” 
 
C.V. Hawkins IV -editor-

Faithful Servant Ministries
www.faithfulservantministries.com


Therefore Pray

Matthew 9:38
Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.

The reason prayer is so important is, first because our Lord told us that prayer on the ground of His Redemption is the most mighty factor He has put into our hands, and second, because of the personal presence of the Holy Ghost in the day in which we live. We receive our knowledge of the Holy Ghost not by experience first, but by the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. The testimony of Jesus Christ regarding the Holy Ghost is that He is here, and the real living experience the Holy Spirit works in us is that all His emphasis is laid on glorifying our Lord Jesus Christ. We know the Holy Spirit first by the testimony of Jesus, and then by the conscious enjoyment of His presence.

“Pray ye therefore.” Prayer is labour, not agony, but labour on the ground of our Lord’s Redemption in simple confidence in Him. Prayer is simple to us because it cost Him so much to make it possible to us. God grant that we may work His victories for Him by taking His way about it.
 
Chambers, Oswald, If Ye Shall Ask, (United Kingdom: Marshall Morgan & Scott) c1937.


Persistent Prayer

Read: Luke 18:1-8

Men always ought to pray and not lose heart. —Luke 18:1

A friend of mine has been a woman of prayer for many years. She has received countless answers from God, but sometimes she is disheartened because certain prayers for loved ones remain unanswered. Yet she keeps on praying, encouraged by the parable in Luke 18. This story features a widow who badgered a heartless judge for help and finally got it.

Jesus ended His parable with a question: If an unrighteous and disrespectful judge finally answers a pestering widow's pleas for help, shall not God answer His own children who cry to Him day and night? (vv.7-8). The expected answer: "Of course He will!"   Read on...

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