There are many reasons why our prayers may not be answered. It is so sad that today many Christians do not believe in the power and effectiveness of prayer. The Bible teaches that God does indeed answer our prayers (john 16:24) but many times we fail to have effective prayer.
John 16:24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.
You must use the power of the Name of Jesus Christ. Even demons tremble at the sound of His name. So then why are you afraid to ask, in the name of Jesus Christ? When you are going through troubling times, when you believe you are fighting a spiritual warfare, call on his name, use the power of his name and reap the rewards.
Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
How often do we pray without faith! James 1:6-8: But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
Do you doubt when you pray? James warns that if you don’t believe you should not expect anything from the Lord!
Matthew 21:22 says And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
Note, He said “all things”, not some, or none….
Matthew 17:20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Yet despite the promises of God, we don’t believe, we lack faith. We need to exercise our faith. The more you exercise your faith and see God’s work , the more your faith will grow. So start with something simple. You have lost something in the house and you are frantically looking for it. Stop, pray, and let God lead you to it. As your faith grows, you will be doing greater things in the name of the Lord, to glorify God and to bring others to an understanding of the Gospel and God’s love.
There are many aspects of our lives that can truly hamper the release of the full power of prayer. One of these is our fellowship with the Lord. In 1 John 1:5-7 we read about fellowship with God (and the saints):
5 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
As we spend more time in fellowship with God and allowing His Holy spirit to speak to us, we become so much closer to God. We are therefore able to ask God clearly for what we want, and we would know when we answers. We are able to recognise when He speaks to us. The following is an analogy that helps explain it:
You have two teenage sons. One of them is rude, locks himself in his room, is angry with everyone in the home. The other is loving, always willing to spend time with his parents and talk with them. The angry teen comes out of his room, and in his usual rough way asks for something to eat. “hey mom, I hungry… what you have for me to eat?”
As a loving mom, you turn your back on him, and walks off. He angrily storms off, slamming his bedroom shut. Why did you turn your back on him? As your other son who sends time with you knew, you were simply going to the kitchen to prepare something for him. But because he doesn’t know you, he misunderstood what you were doing. And so many of us arelike that son, we turn our backs on God even as he prepares the answer for us. Many of us only seek God when we need something and even then we don’t know how to approach him, and how to wait upon the lord. It’s a great pity that more Christians are not like the second son, always spending time, getting to know and understand his parents. Which son/daughter are you?
So, How Long Should my Prayers Be?
The scriptures dos not dictate how long we should pray for. But at the same time, we must be aware that we do not attempt to make our prayers seem long by using vain repetition. Matthew 6:7 reads:
7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
An important part of your prayer time should be devoted to fellowship with the Lord, praising Him, Giving thanks for his blessings and allowing him to speak into your life. As you devote this time daily to the Lord, you will grow in understanding and faith.
In addition, throughout the day, you should pray and fellowship with the Lord. In the workplace, at home, while travelling, just spend a few moments thanking God, praising him, or requesting help. By meditating on the Word of God and His Glory throughout the day, you are able to withstand the attempts of Satan to get you to stray.
Years ago when I was dating, I would travel between San Fernando and Port of Spain on a regular basis and almost every evening on my way home, I would come across a motor-car accident. I would call my girlfriend to tell her about it. Once I saw the accident taking place in my rear view mirror, another time, it occurred just in front of my vehicle! One night she got so distraught by my calls she told me don’t call again to tell her about any more accidents. Hmmmm. That’s when I decided to take it to the Lord in prayer. Every time I left her home, I would say a short prayer, probably less than a minute, asking God’s protection over me, my vehicle and all the drivers along the route I would take home. Then I activated my faith by believing He would protect me and thanking Him for what He was doing in my life. From that night onwards, I came across no more accidents.
How do you approach your prayer time? Give us your feedback..
James 4:3 gives us yet another reason why our prayers are not answered. The King James version reads as follows:
Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
The Amplified puts it this way: 3 [Or] you do ask [God for them] and yet fail to receive, because you ask with wrong purpose and evil, selfish motives. Your intention is [when you get what you desire] to spend it in sensual pleasures.
You may fail to receive because you ask and pray with the wrong purpose, and even with evil, selfish desires. Examine yourself, your life, your motives. Why are you asking for these things? Will the fulfilment of your desires bring you closer to the Lord or take you in the opposite direction.
A pastor related a story of one job that he had before he became a pastor. He worked as a salesman and the company would send them out in pairs. However, his partner was an alcoholic and would often times appear for work drunk from drinking the night before. Especially on Fridays, he would send most of the day sleeping, rather than helping out. The pastor was frustrated until one day he took it to the Lord. He then decided to accept the situation and work inspire of what was happening around him. But no-one seemed to notice or care. At the end of the year, however, the district manager, who was well above his line boss, choose him as Employee of the Year! He was totally surprised. The ones he thought could not notice him, knew what he was going through. in addition, he later found it very helpful in his role as pastor. God was training him for a greater role.
Maybe God is training you for something all now. So, again I ask you, what is your purpose, where is your heart? Do you know what God has in store for you? He is speaking to you right now. Just take the time to listen, God bless you.