As I talk to people who are going through tough times, one of the primary problems they face is confusion. Why is this happening? And what can I do about it?
When we are under pressure, it’s hard to think clearly. Our thoughts become cloudy as we deal with the emotions of the moment.
But there are a couple of verses nearly hidden in the 5th chapter of I John which start to push back those clouds. As we ponder those verses, we remember that God is on our side – and He answers our prayers.
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of Him.I John 5:14
When I see that verse, I want to meditate on it – let its meaning saturate me.
If what we are praying is God’s will, and if we know that it is His will, then we will have that for which we pray. We’ll have faith in what we are praying and we’ll have whatever we ask.
So then next question, how do we know God’s will?
Simply put, God’s will is His Word. His will is wrapped up in the fact that Jesus came to earth and died for our sins. Then He rose again and sent His Holy Spirit to live in our hearts and restore us to the blessings He had ordained for us. Peace in our families, provision, health – all the blessings we see enumerated in scripture.
So we approach our Handbook – the Words ordained by our Creator to tell us who He is and who we are – the Book otherwise known as the Bible. Then we ask for guidance in finding just that part of His Word which applies to our present moment.
Then we pray. And we know that He hears us and answers our prayer.
To illustrate, I want to tell you about a young man who did just what we are talking about.
This young man’s country had been invaded by a brutal army. He had been captured – along with all of his relatives – and taken into a far country. The times were tough, but he knew his God and remained faithful to Him.
He prayed everyday – and he lived a holy life – even though mean spirited, unholy people were all around him.
Have you guessed by now who I’m talking about? I’m talking about Daniel who had been taken to Babylon.
We can read his story in the Book of Daniel.
After he was taken captive, many years passed, and then…
As Daniel was reading the “Books,” the Holy scrolls which eventually became part of the Bible, he saw where God had spoken to Jeremiah. God had said that the Jews would be in Babylon 70 years, and then He would bring them back to their country.
Daniel sat up straight. 70 years were almost passed. God had revealed the timing, and it was almost time for the Jews to be sent back home.
Daniel began to fast and pray. He knew God’s will because he had seen it in the scriptures. (Jeremiah 29:10) So he prayed for God to send them home just as He had promised. Daniel had great faith for this to happen because He had seen clearly that this was God’s plan. God’s will.
When Daniel prayed this prayer, Darius was king of Babylon. Yet shortly after, Cyrus the Great conquered Babylon and became its king. Then God began to speak to this unbeliever named Cyrus. And Cyrus started the process of sending Jews back to rebuild the ruins of their beloved country. To restore the temple and the walls of Jerusalem. (See Ezra 1:1)
Daniel prayed for God’s Word to come to pass and it did!
What would you have done? Would you have prayed for the fulfillment of God’s Word, or would you have just sat around moping and wishing God would do what he said?
Many today are doing the latter.
But there are those who are rising up. They are not settling for status quo, but they are digging into God’s Word and they are praying it back to God. And these people are seeing many miracles.
Isaiah gave us an illustration of this.
Isaiah 55:10,11 For as the rain and snow come down from heaven, And do not return there without watering the earth, And making it bear and sprout, And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
So shall My Word be which goes forth from My mouth. It shall not return to Me empty Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.
His Word shall not return to Him empty – without accomplishing what He sent it for. And how does it return to Him? When you pray God’s Word back to Him – asking for its fulfillment – you are returning it to Him.
Your prayers help to accomplish God’s will in your life.
That’s what Daniel did.
Now what do you do? What do I do?
Let’s find those words our Father has spoken to us, and ask for their fulfillment. When we do that, we are agreeing with God’s will and we will see the results.
When we know that we are praying God’s will, we have faith for it, and we receive what we pray.
Enough for today, we’ll talk more about this next time.
In the meantime,
Keep on Soaring,
John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Church, once said, “I am convinced that God does nothing on the earth, except in response to believing prayer.” When God’s ready to put a new piece of His puzzle in place, He first impresses upon the hearts of His true prayer warriors to pray for it.
We see that principle in Luke 2: 21-52.
God always has His intercessors. While many of the church leaders are parading around in their priestly robes, trying to impress their subjects, God has some less significant people praying for His purpose.
These intercessors are the ones who see and recognize Jesus!
So we see Simeon and Anna. Neither of them is a person of position or great honor; they are simple people. Both of them are advanced in years and both spend lots of time praying. It is these two who God chooses to reveal the identity of Jesus.
Both of these people have seen in God’s Word that the Savior would come, and they are praying for it to happen. The Holy Spirit has revealed to Simeon that he won’t see death until he has seen the Christ, and that’s exactly what takes place.
The joy which comes from this man is evident as he recognizes Jesus and proclaims God’s Word. Overhearing these words, Anna agrees, and her joy exudes to others – the Savior has come.
God’s methodology hasn’t changed. There are many today who parade around in their pride and arrogance, ignoring God’s plan, and even discounting his Word.
Then there are others. There are those who love God and His Word, and who spend time praying for it to come to pass. Sometimes these people are unrecognized, even by those around them. But God knows what they are doing, and He is pleased.
Our world is in great need of awakening, and that’s a promise God has made to His people. As those who will believe God and allow Him to direct their prayers, rise up to their positions of prayer, we will see His plans come to fruition.
We have already begun to see trickles of it, but we will see more. We will see God move in the hearts of people, calling them to a greater life in Him.
Significant change is on the way.
I choose to be a part of His prayer team. Do you?
This is an excerpt from 30 Days: Daily devotions Based On Scripture by Suellen Estes. You may see more at amazon.com/author/suellenestes
Guest Post by Mickey Estes
[ Note: A few years ago, my husband was led by God to start a Pastors’ Prayer Meeting in the area where we lived. He spent a lot of time locating church leaders in the several counties around, and he began the bi-weekly meetings. During that season, the Lord gave him many words about the significance of leaders coming together for God’s purposes. The next few blog posts grew out of those words.
I am sharing them again since these same concepts are so important for this present time. This word is important not only for leaders, but for all of those in the Body of Christ who truly want to see God’s plans unfold in the earth today.]
Recently, the Lord has been speaking to me concerning the body of Christ. There are so many divisions; so many walls. There are denominational walls, racial walls, gender walls, and cultural walls. It’s as if His body is divided into many pieces with no connections, and it grieves Him.
Why is this so? Why have we allowed Satan to divide us? God has some answers for us.
We are all believing for a great awakening, and there are some keys to our preparation for it. One of those keys is humility. (more…)
I can hear you now. Frozen Words. What a strange concept! What on earth is she talking about?
I have to admit it’s an unusual way of saying what I have to say today, but its origin is very sound. Its origin is none other than the Bible.
So I’ll produce a little background. A few years ago as I was studying the Bible and reading along with no particular direction in mind, some verses leapt off the page at me. You know what I mean. Verses which had never meant that much to me suddenly took on a WOW status.
He sends forth His command to the earth; His Word runs very swiftly. He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes. He casts forth His ice as fragments; Who can stand before His cold?
He sends forth His Word and melts them; He causes His wind to blow and His waters to flow. He declares His Word to Jacob. His statutes and His ordinances to Israel. He has not dealt thus with any nation. And as for His ordinances, they have not known them…Praise the Lord!
I stopped right there, and had to read and reread them. The more I did, the more the meaning became clear, and the more their meaning became significant for learning about God’s Kingdom.
These verses talk about two different “speakings” from God. The first is the speaking which sends His Word to the earth, but it’s frozen. It’s locked up, so that it’s hard to understand. “Who can stand before this cold?”
Then comes that wonderful second speaking. The Word is sent in such a way that the snow is melted and waters flow. This time there is a revealing to the children of God. This time the Words are understood and like refreshing waters they bring life and understanding to God’s people.
In the New Testament, we are introduced to two kinds of Word. The Logos, which is all of the Word of God and the Rhema, which is the Word which is spoken to us – personally. It’s revelation, or the truth within the truth.
That’s what these two speakings are referring to. The logos and the rhema. One is the general word for all to see, and the other is when that general word is melted into your heart and revealed to you.
What a beautiful image. The frozen word becoming life giving water as it becomes clear to you that God Himself is speaking that Word to you personally.
That concept of the frozen versus the melted – the ice versus the water, permeates every aspect of our walk with the Lord.
There are many people in our world today who know that the Bible speaks of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. Yet that Word means nothing to them because it’s frozen. They don’t believe it or receive it.
But many of those same people will one day have that word speak to them again, and their lives will be changed. No longer will they see them as rigid words of someone else’s doctrine. They will see them as the Truth, and they will find those words speaking to themselves personally. From that moment, those people will never be the same.
Now let’s take a look at ourselves. God’s plan is so vast and His purpose so deep that none of us – not one – has received all of the revelation, the melted word, that He wants to pour upon our lives. So as we continue to read and study God’s Word, more and more of the Truth will be revealed to us.
Is there a certain area of your life which needs God’s special Word to you? Are you hurting because of problems in your family? Are you suffering from financial lack? Are you or a loved one sick? Are you crying out for a revival in our world?
Every area of our lives has a Word from God which applies to that. He wants us healed, whole, provided for, and spending our time helping to advance His Kingdom. Yet until we are able to hear Him speaking to those needs, we won’t have the faith we need to receive our answers from Him.
So what do we do? We find those words which apply to us at the moment. We then read them and reread them. We mutter them to ourselves, and allow the Truth to penetrate our spirits. As we continue, something amazing happens. God speaks those words to us in a way that we know they are true. No longer are they words on a page, they are now Words spoken to us personally.
Oh, that beautiful moment. We see it’s for us! We see it’s real and it’s personal! We are drenched in the reality that not only does God love us, but He wants the best for us.
Our wonderful Creator has turned the ice and snow into the melted Word of God – penetrating our innermost parts.
A beautiful moment indeed.
P.S. If you would like a compilation of some Covenant Scriptures, addressing many areas of your life, you may download them Here.
Everyone wants a confident prayer life. We want to know that when we pray, God hears and He answers. Yet many don’t know how to attain this. So let’s talk about that.
First we have to be honest with ourselves and determine where we are in our journey. with God. Is Jesus truly our Lord? We want our eyes open to God’s plan and we can only do this if we do it His way. For our prayers to be answered the way we want we have to have faith in God, so every step we take is part of the process of building our faith.
Daniel is an inspiration for many reasons. All of us remember his faithfulness and his deliverance from the lion’s den. Today our focus turns to another incident in his life.
In the first year of (Darius’s) reign I, Daniel, observed in the books the number of the years which was revealed as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet for the completion of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years. (more…)