Looking back at my life, I know that God had a purpose for my life in my 50s because I survived my college years.
Some time ago, a friend said to me, “I pray, but my prayers are never answered.” So he basically gave up on God. At that time, I wasn’t as committed a Christian as I am now and I really didn’t have the proper response for him.
Now I do.
James 4:2-3 tells us:
You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
Many, many years ago, when I was a young Christian, I used to play the lottery. I’d watch as the balls would turn in the cage and pray, “God, if you let me win, I’ll give half to the church!” It never happened.
My motives were wrong. I wanted to win, because I was having financial difficulties. At that time in my life, I still didn’t understand how to fully trust God for all my needs and I didn’t thank Him enough for what I had. I’d say a quick, “Oh, Thank God!” when something good happened or the faithful Thanksgiving prayer, but being grateful didn’t really become part of my life until years later when I was unemployed. (Read “Up the Down Escalator”) It wasn’t until that major trial in my life did God teach me how to trust Him.
Ever since then, I thank God for meals, thank Him for the talents and gifts he’s given me, and for the little things like running water on a regular basis. I try to live in an “attitude of gratitude.”
In Philippians 4:6-7 Paul tells us not to worry, but to ask for what we need in prayer:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
The key phrase here is “with Thanksgiving.” He’s not going to give us what we ask for if we’re not grateful for what He’s given us already!
Another thing that hinders us from getting our prayers answered is Pride. We think we can do it all ourselves and that we don’t need God. How wrong we are.
Peter tells us:
All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because,
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. ~1 Peter 5:5-7
The key words here are “in due time.” God provides, but only if it’s in His Will for your life and when He thinks you’re ready. God’s timing may not be to your liking, but His timing is perfect.
Watch this video of Dr. David Jeremiah explaining “Praying Always with All Prayer“:
God will give you what you ask for if:
- You thank Him for what he’s already given you
- You ask for what you NEED with sincerity and not pride or greed
- You humble yourself before Him
- You TRUST HIM completely for ALL your NEEDS
- You seek His Will for your life and what you’re asking for is in His Will for you
Thank you, Father God, for everything you’ve given me. For providing my food, clothing, the roof over my head, for the income I have and for running water. Thank you for the talents you’ve provided me and allowing me to use them. Father, forgive me for not trusting you in the past and know that I put all my cares, worries, needs at your feet and that you will provide what I need and answers to my problems in Your time. Thank you for doing that, Lord. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
Feel better? I bet you didn’t realize that your burdens could be lifted off your shoulders so easily! Only with God’s mighty Power!
Soli Deo Gloria!
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Notes from the session 2/9/2012 – Joyce Meyer live in Phoenix at Phoenix First Assembly. The topic of the weekend is Getting God to Help you Fight your Battles.
I just looked at my bank account balance and I mumbled a prayer, “God, I’m running out of money. Please let my classes sell.”
It’s not a coincidence.
My TV broke down last week. It was an old-fashioned one so at first I thought it was my chance to get a new HDTV. But I just lost my full-time job. But – next week is Black Friday and the stores are advertising their special already. I found a 19″ HDTV in Target for $99. Ok, I can handle that. I shouldn’t, but I could.
I called my neighbor, Saxton, to take the broken TV to the dumpster for me and he said, I gave 2 TVs to a friend and he’s not using them. I’ll go get them and see if they still work.
Sure, I said, can’t be free!
He shows up yesterday with the TVs – both the old kind. The first one, a black 19″, didn’t have a remote and we couldn’t change the channel to connect to DishNetwork. He brings the 2nd one in and it’s the exact same model as the one that broke. A Magnavox 19″. Works perfectly. Didn’t even have to reprogram the remote!
I bought my Maganvox in Costco back in North Miami around 1998. I brought it in the back seat of my car cross country. What were the chances that my friend had the exact same TV in Phoenix?
I could still go and spend $100 for a new HDTV, but I don’t NEED it now. I’ll use that $100 to pay my electric bill.
So, I’m on Facebook last night and as see a post from a friend, “Does anyone out there have a digital converter box they’re not using?”
I happen to have 2 of them. 2 years ago when every one went digital, I got them for my old TVs and got all the local stations with some rabbit ear antennas. When I moved a year later to where I am now, in a lovely area surrounded my hills and mountains, the rabbit ears only caught a couple of stations because of the mountains. I had to get DishNetwork. I put the digital converter boxes in a box in a closet along with a bunch of other equipment that I’m no longer using, but you never know who may need it.
I was able to pass on the gift.
Don’t repay kindness, pass it on.
And don’t tell me it was a coincidence! It was a God Thing!