The Key to Spiritual Breakthrough

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Jon Bloom:

“You do not have, because you do not ask” (James 4:2). How much enjoyment of God’s presence and experience of his power for mission are we missing out on because we do not ask God for them?

Jesus also says we do not have because we ask with such little faith(Matthew 17:19–20). How much enjoyment of God’s presence and experience of his power for mission are we missing out on because our expectation is so small that prayer will result in anything?

Jesus also says we do not have, because we do not ask long enough(Luke 11:5–13). All over the Bible we see, not in great detail but in sufficient detail, that we are involved in a great cosmic battle and that the prayers of the saints are crucial to the advancement of the kingdom of God (seeDaniel 10:12–14 and Ephesians 6:18). We don’t need to know how it all works; we just need to know it does. The testimony of Scripture and church history is that great, Spirit-empowered, Great Commission-fulfilling works of God are preceded, carried, and prolonged by the fervent, persistent, prevailing prayers of the saints. When prayer dissipates, spiritual power dissipates.

How much enjoyment of God’s presence and experience of his power for mission are we missing out on because we simply don’t ask long enough?

JESUS PRAYED

Read more: https://pjcockrell.wordpress.com/2017/02/24/the-key-to-spiritual-breakthrough/

The devil and your prayers

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A prayer for gospel Pharisees and Scribes

And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with the file hands?

And he said to them, Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, this people honors me with their lips, but there’re heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines and the commandments of men. You leave the Commandments of God and hold the tradition of men. Mark 7. 5 – 8

Jesus these are strong words. What could be more tragic than to hear you say, you talk about me a whole lot, using plenty of spiritual language and biblical quotes. You are quick to recognize and correct faults teaching.  You’re even zealous to apply what you know to others. But your heart is very far from me?

It would be one thing you’re such a review came to us because we were acting like Mosaic Pharisees and scribes – distorting and misapplying Old Testament law; putting people under the yoke of performance–based spirituality; replacing your Commandments with our traditions. But it is an altogether different thing to be a gospel Pharisee and scribe.

Forgive us, Jesus, when me love exposing faults gospels more than we love spending time with you in prayer and fellowship.

Forgive us when we are quick to tell people what obedience is not but failed to demonstrate what the obedience of faith and love actually is.

Forgive us when we call ourselves recovering Pharisees or recovering legalists when in actuality, were not really recovering from anything.

Forgive us when we talk more about “getting” the gospel then how we have been “gotten” by the gospel.

Forgive us for being just as arrogant about grace theology as we were obnoxious about legalistic theology.

Forgive us when we don’t use our freedom to serve one another in love, but rather use it to put our consciences to sleep.

Forgive us what our love for the gospel does not translate into a love for holiness, world evangelism, and caring for widows and orphans.

Forgive us for having a PhD in the indicatives of the gospel yet feeling so miserably when it comes to the imperatives of the gospel.

Forgive us when we love the gospel more than we actually love you, Jesus, as impossible as that may seem.

~ Scotty Smith

Faith to Believe God Enjoys My Prayers

http://www.trillianewbell.com/2017/02/08/faith-believe-god-enjoys-prayers/

A prayer about our tireless, Weariless God

The Lord is the everlasting God, The creator of the ends of the earth.
And his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:28 – 31

Gracious Father, this was one of the first scriptures I memorized as a young believer, yet reading at today is like finding a new treasure in an old field. That is one of the things I most love about your word. It is never antiquated or redundant but always vintage and ever knew. You are the God who speaks in specific ways without stuttering. You are the father who knows what we need even before we ask, and you provided before we ask.

This passage from Isaiah is underlined in multiple times in my favorite Bible, and for good reason. It reminds me but you are not like me, in so many ways. you never get tired or weary. I do and I am. Accepting limitations, finiteness, and weakness has never been one of my strengths. But I must. Since youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall, why do I think I am exempt from running on empty and hitting the wall?

Father, I am not asking to soar like an eagle, as fun as it might be, And I’m not seeking to run like a sprinter or a marathoner. Just walking upright with a renewed heart, and a steady gait, and replenish straits will be enough.

My hope is in you, father – merciful Abba, who brings refreshment into the wilderness; generous Lord, who promises sufficient grace everyday; mighty God, who raises the dead. Right now I look to you for all the spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical strength I will need to live out the implications of the gospel just today. I am not depleted, though heading there, but I have no doubts about your great compassion for me in Jesus.

Because Jesus embraced the ultimate weakness and weariness of the cross, I am confident of your burden – bearing love. I may be weary in my servant hood, but I am thriving in my sonship. Nothing can separate us from your love. I pray in Jesus is tender and triumphant name. Amen

~ Scotty Smith

A Prayer for Those Waiting on Healing

A Prayer for Those Waiting on Healing

When our mobility is threatened, the world seems to stop. Suddenly everything becomes painful, nerves fry, and our prayers become urgent. Crying in a heap on my floor, I laid my collegiate athletic self to rest… I thought for good. Or, for as far forward as I could see. Whether His response to our agony is miraculous or deferred, we can trust He is healing us through seasons of pain.

1. Take it to Him. 

“Pray about everything.” (Phil 4:6)

The things that we cannot do pale in comparison to Who we are talking to. Keep talking to God after the shock of the news. Revelation has many stages, and our eyes will open to a little more relief each day.

There is more: http://www.crosswalk.com/faith/prayer/prayers/a-prayer-for-those-waiting-on-healing.html

Cultivate a Prayerfully Expectant Heart

Do you expect God to answer prayer? Or do you, like me, struggle to maintain a prayerfully expectant heart?

For years, maybe even decades, Simeon had been waiting for God to fulfill a promise. Was he weary of waiting? I don’t think so. Simeon was a man of faith, “righteous and devout…eagerly waiting for the Messiah to come and rescue Israel [and] the Holy Spirit was upon him” (Luke 2:25, NLT).

The Hebrew word often translated waiting in Luke 2:25 means “expectant.” The Message words the verse this way: “Simeon…lived in the prayerful expectancy of help for Israel.” By the power of the Holy Spirit who rested on him, Simeon lived in confident hope because the Spirit had said Simeon “would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah” (v. 26, NIV).

So Simeon waited. He watched. He prayed.

Simeon’s Expectancy

One day, the Spirit told him to go to the temple. Maybe that was all the information Simeon received. Just go. And he went. What did he think when he saw the young couple among the temple crowd that day? Did the Spirit say, “That’s what you’ve been waiting for. Go to them”?

Continue reading: http://unlockingthebible.org/prayerfully-expectant-heart/