WHAT IS PRAYER - PART 4
22 December, 2014
What is Prayer? Success in Prayer 5
We call prayer a success, when we get audience with God and receive the things we desire of him. This is a wonderful privilege. When we go to God in the right manner — he will extend the golden scepter.
In order to get an answer to our prayers, we must have sincere desire. This arises from a sense of need. The desire will be to the extent of our sense of need. If we have but a slight sense of need — then we have but little desire. "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours." Mark 11:24. "There is no lack to those who fear him." God supplies every need of his redeemed children. Desire, as we have said, arises from a sense of need, and God will supply our needs; therefore what we desire — we shall receive.
Again, we read in the Word of Truth that "the desire of the righteous shall be granted." Thus we understand that in order to pray successfully — we must experience a sense of need. Do you want more love for God? Do you feel in your soul a deep sense of such need? Then you have great desire for it — and "the desire of the righteous shall be granted." God will not hear cold, dead, formal prayers! He will not give us that for which we feel no need.
In order to be successful in prayer, we must come to God humbly. It is the cry of the humble, that God hears. He heard the prayer of the publican because he came feeling a sense of need, and also came in a humble, dependent spirit. He did not hear the proud Pharisee. God heard the prayer of Abraham, when this patriarch came to him asking him to spare Sodom if a certain number of righteous people could be found there. God heard this prayer because of the manner in which the suppliant came. Abraham said, "Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord — I who am but dust and ashes." If we come to the Lord feeling that he is under some obligation to us because of something we have done or because of what we are — then he will not hear us. O Lord, help us to be humble, to feel our dependence.
In order for prayer to prevail with God — it must come from a submissive and obedient heart. "Submit yourselves therefore to God" is the exhortation of the Bible. And "whatever we ask, we receive from him, because we obey his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight." When we keep the commandments of God and love his will — he will hear our prayers.
The Lord would have us come to him with reverence. We should come into the presence of God with a holy awe resting upon our souls. If we were to step into the presence of an earthly monarch, we would have a profound feeling of awe and reverence — then how much more on coming into the majestic presence of God. Oh! do not dishonor him by bowing down so unfeelingly, as if God were no more than an ordinary man! We should address him with reverence.
Do not rush hurriedly and casually into his presence — but come before him as Moses did at the burning bush. Prayer should be sacred and hallowed. We feel constrained to bow our heads when devout men pray. When we come upon anyone in secret communion with God, we feel impelled to withdraw in silence. In your worship around your family altar, let there be reverence. Teach your little ones to revere the name of Jesus. Let everything else be laid aside and come before him with profoundness of thought and feeling.
We should come before the Lord in childlikeness. Being reverential, does not necessitate being in slavish bondage. We can come to the Lord with reverence — and also in childlike confidence and cheerfulness. We should come with a filial spirit filling our hearts. When we come in this manner, the Lord will hear us, and prayer will be availing.
WHAT IS PRAYER - PART 4