He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Psalm 40:3a

Monday, April 18, 2016

The Church Prays

         Our congregation has been waiting for a new pastor for nearly two years.  It’s been an amazing process as the team has prayed earnestly for God’s leading, so we bring in the man God wants to lead our church.

            But the Pastor, as important as he is as leader, is not the only person who needs to make a difference in our congregations.  We the people, are the church.  We are called throughout scripture to be a mighty church of God.  We are called to prayer.  Our prayers give us the power to say no to sin, have a joyful life and good fellowship with other believers.

            God’s ears and eyes are open to those who would humble themselves before him and search his will.  God tells us we have not, because we ask not.  It isn’t that God doesn’t know what we need or want, but in a relationship there is communication; conversation; dialogue! And yes, God does speak to us, but we have to have hearts and ears that will hear!  But how can we have a heart that hears if we are not listening?

            In any relationship if we don’t listen to the person speaking, we cannot respond to their comments, views, questions and thoughts they have on any given subject.  God is no different!  If we are not listening, like any relationship, there is going to be disconnect.  Be honest.  If you are talking with your spouse and you are tuned out, you likely become agitated and will then tune him/her out.  This creates tension until dialogue is next to none, until the problem is solved!  We MUST take time to be with our spouse if we expect a relationship!

            When Jesus walked the Earth, he scheduled time in his day to spend time with the Father.  If it was important to Him, shouldn’t it be even more important to us.  Consider he KNEW the mind of God because He is God!  Still he had conversation.  Can’t you picture it?  They are alone in conversation and Jesus saying something like, “Father, did you see Peter today when he walked on the water?  Was that not amazing?  It’s a shame he had that momentary doubt and took his eyes off me!”

            “But Son,” God would reply, “You were there for him!  I’m proud of you!”

            Wouldn’t having this kind of conversation with God be awesome?  We can!  But we have to be focused like Peter needed to be, with our eyes on God so when he speaks we hear! I’m not suggesting we will “hear” God speak as we do our neighbor, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t “speak” to us…..through our thoughts, hearts, His Word, prayer, even other believers.  But in each case we must listen!

            So I challenge you to evaluate your “prayer time” with God.  Do you, out of obligation sit down and lift your requests, treating God as a vending machine?  Or do you have conversation with him like Jesus might have?  As believers we are God’s children.  He wants to hear our hearts when it’s joyful, breaking, troubled and everywhere in between.  Do you have this kind of relationship with God?  I can tell you, it’s my heart’s desire to have this kind of communion with Him.  Is it yours?