Monday, April 23, 2012

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 54

Prayers of Petition continued...

God already knows our needs, He already knows what it is we are lacking, but He desires that we ask of Him, and come before Him with prayers of petition. Parents know what their children need, yet they wait until their children ask and petition them before giving it to them.

God is able. He is not limited in His power, nor is He limited in His resources, and when we come before Him with a need, when we petition Him for something, we do so with full assurance.

Philippians 4:19, “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

I’ve always found it worth noting that Paul personalized God when writing to those in the church of Philippi concerning His ability to supply our needs. Paul did not generalize, he did not say, ‘and God shall supply all your need’, he said, ‘my God shall supply all your need’.

Why is this relevant? It is relevant because it highlights the need for our relationship with God to be personal, and intimate. Paul was familiar enough with God, he knew God well enough, wherein He was no longer God in general terms, but his God, something intimate and personal.

In order to petition God with prayers of petition, we must first and foremost know God. We must know God in all of His wondrous attributes, we must know Him as Father, as King, as Lord, as Provider, as Healer, as Comforter, as Friend, as Protector, and as Master.

Just as you would never petition someone you don’t know personally, we must know God in order to pray prayers of petition to Him.

If you know God, don’t be afraid to ask! Many believers make the mistake of not asking, and not petitioning God for what they need, and begin to grow bitter in their hearts because God has not met the need for which they never petitioned God in the first place. Many of us have not, because we ask not!

Go before God, and petition Him. Go before God, and ask Him for what you need, whether in the area of physical healing, spiritual strength, finances, or restoration of a relationship, when we ask God for something pleasing to Him, He will give us exceedingly, beyond what we expected or anticipated.

Be specific in what you are asking God for, and make certain it is a need, rather than a want. When we go to a pharmacy, we go, knowing that we need a certain kind of medication. Nobody goes to a pharmacy to window shop, nobody goes for the ambiance. They go because they have a need, whether to fill a prescription, pick up some allergy medicine, or get some aspirin for their headache.

When we pray prayers of petition to God, we do so knowing what our need is long before we kneel before Him and approach Him in prayer.

When we learn how to pray, our prayers will bear fruit, we will see the results of our prayers, and rather than our prayer time being a cumbersome or burdensome task, it will be a joyous occasion to speak to God, knowing that He hears.

While teaching His disciples how to pray, Jesus also spoke a parable to them, concerning a man who had a friend, and went to him at midnight to borrow some bread. Although the entire parable deserves a deeper look, and Lord willing we will discuss it at a later date within the context of this series, I wanted to highlight the specificity with which this man made his request.

Luke 11:5-6, “And He said to them, ‘which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him.’”

The man went to his friend, and asked him for a specific favor. He did not ask for some bread, he did not ask his friend to give him whatever he could spare, he asked for three loaves. There was specificity in his request, and he went on to tell his friend why it was he needed the three loaves of bread. Another friend of his had come to him on his journey, and he had nothing to set before him. As such, he needed the three loaves of bread.

Make your case before God. Petition Him with your need, not in a general sense, but a specific one. If you need three loaves of bread, don’t ask Him for bread; ask Him for three loaves of bread. If you need God to heal your arthritis, don’t ask Him for general healing; ask Him to heal the arthritis that has been bothering your left shoulder, and right elbow. Be specific in your prayers of petition before God.

When you come before God in prayer, you have to know what you’re praying for. God is a God of order, and specificity. It’s never going to be hit or miss with God. We can’t come before Him with a laundry list, petitioning Him for everything under the sun hoping something sticks, hoping something gets His attention, and He will grant us one or two or five things on our list.

Whether in your prayer closet, or a public prayer meeting, when you petition God for something, even if it’s something seemingly impossible from men’s perspective, do so with the assurance that He is able and willing to supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Know what it is you’re praying for, petition God in faith and He will answer your prayer.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

1 comment:

Suzie said...

Hello Michael,

I had to smile when I read today's post as it mirrored a recent event in my own life. I recently had surgery which would have entailed something very extensive of which, scared me greatly.
I went to God with a specific prayer about my anxiety and the surgery itself. I prayed nearly daily for the few months prior to surgery.
Then one day as I was sitting down I felt a great need to pick up my Bible; too great to ignore! Before I opened its pages I asked The Lord to guide me if He had a message for me. He did!
When I opened my Bible my eyes fell on Matthew 21:22 "And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will recieve."

I cried with joy and thanked Jesus for His words. I KNEW at that moment my prayers would be answered and I would not need the more extensive surgery even though the surgeon was so insistant that I would. My anxiety faded.
Everything you wrote today made me say, "Yes!"
I had to write and acknowledge your guiding words today and to let others know the strength they conveyed. "Petition God in faith and He will answer your prayers." summed up all you wrote, for me.

Thank you Michael and God Bless.