1. Pray Because God Loves Me
One reason we don’t pray is that we have a hard time believing that God is really interested in us. We can’t seem to conceive that the creator of the entire universe is interested in the details of my life. But he is. If he has the hairs on my head numbered (Luke 12:7) he cares about the details!
When we fully discover how much God really loves us, prayer will no longer be an issue. The issue is not, “I should pray more.” It’s that we don’t realize how much God cares about and loves us. Why?
- We love to talk to the people who love us the most. No one loves us more than God.
“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends.” John 15:15
A reason to talk to God about anything in prayer is because we’re friends. Isn’t that amazing? God says, “I don’t treat you like servants, like slaves. I treat you as friends.”
Have you ever been away from someone you love for a period of time? And then when you see or call the person you talk and talk and get caught up. No matter how much the long distance phone bill may be? It may be 2:00 in the morning, but you want to stay up and talk. Why? Because you are interested in everything that had gone on in his/her life and they are interested in everything that had gone on in your life. We love to talk to those who love us the most.
- When I fully discover how much God loves me, prayer will be like talking to a friend.
2. Pray Because God Will Meet My Needs
Prayer is God’s chosen method of meeting my needs. The Bible teaches that there are some things that God has promised to do only if we pray. Some people think, “God knows what I need so I don’t need to ask. He’ll just give it when I need it.” That’s not true. God has set it up in His plan that there are some things He will only do if you ask.
- Prayer is God’s chosen method of meeting my needs
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Phil. 4:6
What do I pray about? Everything!
How often? “Give us this day our …. DAILY bread.” Matt. 6:11 Daily.
“You do not have, because you do not ask God.” James 4:2
Over twenty times in the New Testament the Bible says “Ask”. Ask, seek, knock, keep on asking.
- What am I lacking right now in my life simply because I’m not asking God for it?
C.H. Spurgeon, a great pastor in London, England, once said this, “God never shuts His storehouses until you shut your mouth.” You have to ask.
3. Pray Because God Can Do For Others What I Can’t
Have you ever wished you could do more for someone?
- I am limited. God is not.
People may reject your appeals, reject your arguments, reject you as a person, but they’re totally defenseless against your prayers. They go straight to the heart.
Prayer is not limited by space. Prayer is like sending a missile. I could pray for somebody in Guatemala and it’s like sending a missile directly to their heart and I never leave Texas. It is limitless in its power.
“I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone– for kings and all those in authority” 1 Tim. 2:1-2
Instead of complaining about our country’s leaders, pray for them. Pray for those in authority over us, pray for your boss or manager. Pray for our loved ones. Nagging may change a loved one, but not always for the better. Pray more nag less. Pray more complain less.
A.C. Dixon wrote, “When we depend upon organizations, we get what organizations can do; when we depend upon education, we get what education can do; when we depend upon man, we get what man can do; but when we depend on prayer, we get what God can do.”
James 5:15-16 “The prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”
- I can’t change people, but God can.
4. Pray Because God Will Keep My Conscience Clean
All of us have regrets. All of us make mistakes. All of us fall short. I don’t come up to my own standard, much less God’s. It’s not very hard to admit you’re not perfect.
Jesus was perfect. His reason for coming and dying on a cross was to pay for our mistakes, regrets, sins or shortcomings. The book of Hebrew explains this…
“Since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience.”Heb 10:19-22
- Nothing can take away my guilt or clear my conscience, except Jesus.
God wants to forgive us. He says that over and over. When we come to God and confess our sins to Him, we don’t need to beg “God, please! Pretty please with sugar on it!.” And we don’t have to bargain “God, if you forgive me, I will never do it again!” If it’s an area of weakness, I’ll be back there within a day or two. We don’t have to bribe “God, if You’ll forgive me, I promise to always read my Bible. We don’t have to beg, bargain or bribe. Just confess! Confess means agree.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
- I will do wrong, but confession to God brings forgiveness and peace of mind.
There is no reason in the world for us to carry guilt and shame. None at all! God has made a provision for that. It is called confession. Don’t repress it. Don’t suppress it. Confess it. That’s how we get rid of guilt. God says, “Because of Jesus, I will cleanse you.”
He forgives us instantly, totally, completely and freely.
One of the greatest benefits of prayer is that I can unload my guilt. If I’m carrying guilt I’m not taking advantage of what Jesus Christ did on the cross. I give God my guilt, and then I am clean and free. I hope you will too.
For more about the series, Livin’ on Prayer, got to www.RidgeFellowship.com
All verses are from The New International Version of the Bible