You Have Not Because You Ask Not
How Should We Ask
James 1:5-8 describes the right attitude to have when we ask God for things in prayer:
— We are to ask believing,
— We are not to ask in doubt (maybe God can, maybe God will, He probably won’t for me even though He has done it for others, etc.)
— “5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 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. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.”
Is There A Model to Follow?
Yes – In Matthew 6:9-13 and Luke 11:2-4 Jesus gives this example to His disciples:
Many of us have memorized this passage of scripture and enjoy repeating it to God.
I know that when I am in times of deep distress, I sometimes don’t feel like praying to God, I’d rather be angry and scream at Him — it is at these moments that I find it helpful to slowly pray through these words.
Just as meditating slowly on Psalm 23 helps me to remember just how loving God is – meditatively praying the Lord’s Prayer helps me to reconnect with God in a worshipful way.
Saying This Prayer Doesn’t Mean – God Has To
— Do what we want Him to do.
— Actually I shared Psalm 23 and the Lord’s Prayer with you — because I let my heart get off track and I needed an attitude adjustment.
— Psalm 23 helped me remember who God is and that He will take care of everything
The Lord’s Prayer – helps me to put my life in perspective and to remember that I serve a God who deeply cares for me and wants the best for me. It helps me to worship Him with thankfulness in every circumstance.
— A change in my heart attitude is what happens.
— Part of that changed heart attitude includes wanting God to change my current circumstances but now from a perspective of hope – God is working all things in my life out for my good (Romans 8:28).
Prayer is not a duty, it is a relationship conversation between God and me (you).Prayer is not a duty, it is a relationship conversation between God and us. Click To Tweet
Back to the Lord’s Prayer
Jesus told His disciples that this is an “example of” or a “pattern of” or “the ingredients of” how to pray:
— “Our Father in heaven” is teaching us whom to address our prayers to—the Father.
— “Hallowed be your name” is telling us to worship God, and to praise Him for who He is.
— “your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven”, is a reminder to us that we are to pray for God’s plan in our lives and for God’s plan for the world to be done.
— “give us today our daily bread.” Encourages us to ask God for the things we need (and put our desires/wants in His hands).
— “Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” reminds us to confess our sins to God and to turn from them, and also to forgive others as God has forgiven us.
— The conclusion of the Lord’s Prayer, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one” is a plea for help in achieving victory over sin and a request for protection from the attacks of the devil.
I shall not be in want – because the Lord is my Shepherd and I can pray. I can ask, seek and knock. ([Effective prayer] 7 “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.9 “You parents—if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? 10 Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! 11 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him. (Matthew 7:7-12)
AGAIN: We are to pour our hearts out to God in prayer, it’s up to Him whether the answer is yes, no, not now. – 6 Don’t worry (or be anxious) about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)
This week — let us not be anxious for anything — let us pray about everything – let us present our requests to God with thanksgiving :: so we can experience the PEACE of God that transcends all understanding AND guards our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus