When we understand the role of the Word in our lives, we must also consider prayer. Prayer is a common activity for Christians that connects us with the Father who has all the wisdom, knowledge, power and authority in heaven and earth. It is a two-way communication channel with our Head Quarters, and vital to the successful establishing of God’s kingdom on earth.
Central to answered prayer is the will of God, because God does not answer prayers that contradict His will in any situation. We are here on earth to do His will; Jesus says in Matthew 6:33 to seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness, and as we do so, He will take care of our needs. This lines up with God’s covenant with us. In everything we seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, while He takes care of our needs. He is a good Father who knows how to care of His children.
Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. Matthew 6:31,32
Nobody, except God’s redeemed, can preach the gospel. The angels don’t preach the gospel because, quite frankly, they don’t understand it. (See 1 Peter 1:12) This doesn’t mean that you have to preach a five-point sermon; it may just be a sentence or two, or your personal testimony. This assignment was given to all believers, not just those in full time ministry. This is where prayer has its most important work, for prayer must be according to the will of God, and not the selfish desires of man.
Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, 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 the petitions that we have asked of Him. 1 John 5:14, 15
It is interesting to note that all the prayers recorded in the Bible after Jesus rose from the dead, are prayers for the church. This is because God now adopted us as His children, and, as a good Father, He is looking out for our well-being. The new birth even changed our prayers! As earthly fathers we know to take care of our children without them asking for it; how much more will our heavenly Father do the same. We can trust Him to take good care of us while we work to see His Kingdom come in the hearts of people.
It touches God’s heart when we pray prayers according to His will, while setting aside our personal desires. We can learn much from the prayers recorded in the Bible after Jesus rose triumphantly from the dead. When you study the prayers in the passages below, a pattern will emerge of how our early counterparts prayed:
- Acts 4:23-31
- Acts 12:1-17
- 2 Corinthians 13:9
- Galatians 4:19
- Ephesians 1:15-23
- Ephesians 3:14-21
- Philippians 1:9-11
- Colossians 1:9-12
- Colossians 4:12
See if you can find more of these wonderful New Testament prayers, and begin to pray your own prayers as you receive revelation in the Word.
Sadly, most prayers that Christians pray are either selfish prayers, or prayers for things that God already provided in Christ Jesus. We often hear Christians pray for more love, not thinking that God already poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (See Romans 5:5) All we now need to do is walk in that love, in faith, and see it grow. Some pray for more faith, yet faith does not come by prayer, but by hearing the Word! (See Romans 10:17) Prayers for more power are continually prayed, but resurrection power works toward us (See Ephesians 1:19-20), and God uses the power that works in us! (See Ephesians 3:20). Ignorance in our prayer lives lead to discouragement and, eventually, a prayerless life.
The Lord loves to hear His word coming from our hearts. It is like an echo of that creative power that upholds all things, (See Hebrews 1:3) and charges the atmosphere with mighty anointing. Think of the boldness that fills our hearts when we know that we pray according to the will of God! Even Jesus said to His Father, “Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come– In the volume of the book it is written of Me– To do Your will, O God.” (See Hebrews 10:7) During His walk on earth Jesus never said or did anything that He did not first get from the Father. (See John 5:19 & John 14:10) He always sought the will of God in everything.
When we pray the Word of God, we pray His will, and unite with His heart’s desire. This agreement with heaven is a force that cannot be resisted. So, before you pray, take some time to seek the Father’s will; approach His throne with carefully framed words and sentences. Prepare for your audience with the King. David, the man after God’s heart, knew how to approach the Lord:
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14