The Psalmist David was deeply distressed because some of the people he loved the most in the world had become his enemies. His heart was crushed.
He exclaimed, "But I give myself unto prayer," (Psalm 109:4).
That was his way of dealing with enormous life issues that weighed so heavily on his heart.
Prayer. In every distress of life, prayer is the ultimate solution. Not just prayer, as in the pouring forth of verbiage, but the act of carrying every matter in our lives to God for His resolutions.
Nothing on earth has the potential of prayer. The timeless adage says, "Prayer changes things." Well it does. And here is why:
Prayer takes us into the presence of God. Prayer engages God in our problems. Prayer knocks on heaven's door, and heaven answers.
When we pray, we set eternal powers into motion. Not that God isn't already moving in our behalf. He said that He knows what we have need of even before we ask. But when we carry our supplications directly to God, we set into motion all the same miracle-working power that created the universe and everything else we know today.
What God has done throughout the ages can be done again and again just as easily. Even things that have never been done can be done by our God. There is nothing He cannot do. What He has done for others, He will do for you.
If you walk through a grand hotel lobby, and step into the revolving door at the entrance, you set in motion something that forces you to follow through. As you push your way into a revolving door, you want to be careful to go with the flow of the motion, or you may possibly be struck by the door. Furthermore, anyone who attempts to pass through the revolving door at the same time will be forced to adopt the same momentum that you have going.
When you pray, you are pushing against a revolving door. You are saying to God, I want or I need something to be done. You have set the door into motion. God cannot ignore you. Because He is omniscient -- all knowing, it is impossible for Him not to register your request. He hears it. Never doubt that. And your prayer forces a response. God has forever obligated Himself to respond to those who diligently seek Him in faith.
You may think God does not hear you when you pray, but nothing could be further from the truth. Oh, He hears you. Someone has already said that God hears every prayer and His answer will be one of the following: "Yes." "No." "Wait." or "Do it yourself."
Perhaps there are other degrees of fulfillment. Maybe God is willing to do one thing you ask, but He disapproves of something else. Maybe the answer will be a negotiated settlement, or a compromise. Who can know what will happen until you press against the door and set something into motion?
Still, the important thing to know is that ALL PRAYER gets God's attention. Now, I didn't say that all prayer gets the desired answer. Anybody knows that you don't always get everything you ask for in prayer. But that is no excuse for not asking.
In this book, we will look at prayer from every conceivable angle -- forward, backward, right-side-up, upside-down, inside and out. There are countless dimensions of prayer, and unless you are an astute, seasoned prayer-warrior, you will find very much here to learn, at least some things that you probably never considered before.
I want to tell you from my own personal experience that I would prefer to give up just about anything I can think of ahead of giving up prayer. Prayer has been my consolation of last resort more times than I can count. Don't take away my ability to pray. Don't worry; you can't. Even a disabled man confined to his bed can still pray. Even an incarcerated criminal can pray.
Rich and poor can pray. Healthy or handicapped can pray. Young or old can pray. Red, yellow, black or white can pray. American, African, European, Asian, or any other can pray.
If you can think, you can pray. You can pray standing up or kneeling down. You can pray in the kitchen, the bedroom, the bathroom, the shower, in the car, in the office, or outdoors.
You can pray out loud. You can scream a prayer. You can whisper a prayer. You can pray without moving your lips.
You can pray in English, Chinese, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Bengali, Portuguese, Malay, Japanese, German, Korean, French, Dutch, Swahili, Yiddish, Hebrew, or any language known to man. You can write a prayer, type a prayer. You can scribble a prayer in the sand.
You can pray at breakfast, lunch or dinner. You can pray at 3:00 PM or at 3:00 AM. You can pray in the dark. You can pray in private. You can pray in a crowd.
The most important thing is that you pray.
When you pray, you will never be the same again. Prayers never die. In heaven, the smoke from the altar of incense, accompanying and symbolically representing the prayers of the saints, ascends before the throne of God forever and ever. Your prayers are among them. Your mother's prayers, and your grandma's prayers, even those who are now deceased -- their prayers are still ringing in the ears of God.
What on earth can you do that has more eternal value than prayer? What can you do for your spouse or your children that will benefit them more than prayer?
You may bequeath a fortune to your descendants, if you can, but you cannot give them a more valuable gift than prayer. Even if you are poor, you can give a priceless gift to your loved ones by praying for them.
I've seen prayer touch the heart of God to heal just about any sickness or malady you can imagine. After praying, I've seen chronic skin diseases healed overnight. I've seen tonsillitis healed, and high fevers broken instantly. I've seen heart attack victims healed instantly, and heart damage and brain damage reversed. I've watched comatose victims wake up, cancer victims cured instantly, blind eyes see, and deaf ears opened -- yes, I really have!
I've seen prayer bring miraculous sums of money in the mail. Prayer can save a house from foreclosure. Prayer can prevent a bankruptcy. Prayer can save a marriage. Prayer can bring a wandering child back home. Prayer can deliver an alcoholic or a drug addict or a prostitute. Prayer can move a rebel to contrition. Prayer can save an endangered flight, prevent a crash landing, make an engine run without gas. Prayer can stop bullets, prevent a bomb from going off, or stop a wild animal from attacking.
Prayer can change the mind of a judge, or a jury, or make a plaintiff drop the charges. Prayer can silence a maniac, cheer the depressed, comfort the grieving. Prayer can call down an army of angels.
Why pray? Why NOT? What can you do that is a better investment of your time? What can you do that can work in any kind of weather, in any season, under any circumstances, like prayer?
"God doesn't answer my prayers!" you may object. Well, I've got news for you. God most certainly does answer your prayers. Look backwards, right this minute at one of your recent prayer requests. So you say that you prayed and nothing happened.
Let's analyze that for a moment. Nothing happened? God didn't hear? Sure He did. THAT happened. But you didn't get what you asked for.
Then what did happen? God may have decided not to respond to you at this particular time. That doesn't mean that He is not going to give you what you ask. It may mean that He is going to put some time between your request and His response.
Haven't you ever heard of delayed gratification? It is one of the greatest human lessons. Almost nothing in life gives consistently immediate results.
Most things take time. Plant a garden. Does it come up overnight? No. Go to college. Do you get your degree overnight? No. Court a lover. Will he or she marry you on the first date? No.
What do you know of in life that gives consistently immediate answers? Not the government. Not the school system. Not the doctor or the hospital. Not the bank. Not the insurance company. Everybody puts you off. Everybody takes their time.
Why? Because work takes time. Tests have to go to the lab. The papers have to be filed. Reports have to be generated. Checks have to be written and mailed. Everything takes time.
Just because you prayed and didn't get exactly what you wanted as soon as you got up off your knees, don't think God isn't working. He may not come when you want Him, but He will ALWAYS come on time. He knows when the best time is to show up.
Meanwhile, God may be answering your prayer, and you don't even realize it. Maybe He is working on somebody you don't even know to bring the results to you. Maybe He is healing something quietly, and you may not know the results until later. Maybe He is turning the world upside-down on its axis, but you can't see what He is doing, so you don't think He's doing it.
Just wait and see.
So don't EVER stop praying. The one prayer you fail to pray may be the prayer that would have turned your world around. Maybe YOUR prayer would have saved that loved one. Maybe YOUR prayer would have prevented that crime down the street. Maybe YOUR prayer would have prevented that car crash.
You can't get results you don't set into motion. Prayer sets things into motion. Prayer lights a firecracker. Sooner or later, it has to go off.
In this book, I'm going to show you how to become a powerful prayer warrior. I am going to show you a variety of ways you can pray. I am going to give you whole lists of things for you to pray for. I am going to show you how to schedule your prayers for maximum effectiveness.
If you will be sure to finish this book, I promise you, you won't be the same by the time you have read the last page. Just don't lay it down unless you have to. Read this book until you are finished with it, and you won't regret the time you have taken. That's my promise to you.
As you read it, underline the statements that speak to you. Write your own thoughts in the margins. Make notes of important points in the front or the back of the book, and include the page numbers so you can go back and read them again later.
You are going to be different after you have read this book. You are going to be a prayer warrior.
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