Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Throne Room Awaits

No man or woman is greater than his/her prayer life. The dictionary defines prayer as a reverent petition made to God or another object of worship. When Jesus Christ died on Calvary the veil of the temple was torn in two which represented the fact that now man could come into the presence of God himself instead of going through the temple priest. In is through Jesus Christ and His life, ministry, death, and resurrection that we can now commune with God directly. But how many of us take full advantage of this unlimited access to the throne room of God?

The Bible exhorts us to pray unceasingly, fervently, and earnestly but for most of us the fulfillment of this command is not a reality. Leonard Ravenhill in his classic Christian book, Why Revival Tarries says the church is most poverty-stricken in the area of prayer, “We have many organizers, but few agonizers; many players and payers, few prayer-ers; many singers, few clingers; lots of pastors, few wrestlers; many fears, few tears; much fashion, little passion; many interferers, few intercessors; many writers, but few fighters. Failing here, we fail everywhere.”

I believe the Christian life can be counterfeited in just about every area except for prayer. A true prayer warrior brings the presence of the Holy Spirit. In Ephesians chapter six, the Apostle Paul states that “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” As we beseech the throne room of God, spiritual forces are battling either on our behalf or against us. Given this spiritual truth, it is possible that one man or woman praying on earth can move angels into action.

Earlier in my Christian life, I was very ministry focused. I saw the doing of God’s work as the top priority but in actuality, without prayer, even our good intentions on God’s behalf are futile. Prayer is the time when the Lord is able to cleanse us, teach us His mind and will, and make the impossible possible.

A church is truly set on fire by its commitment to prayer. The world is not waiting for a new definition of the gospel; they are waiting for a new demonstration of the power of the gospel. It is the life that is transformed that makes the world sit up and take notice. That is why the Apostle Paul in Romans chapter 12 exhorts us to “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” It is only as our mind is renewed that we are able to prove and do God’s will.

I think for many Christians we view the reading of God’s Word and prayer as separate, but I believe they are intimately connected. The Word allows us to know the mind of God; prayer enables us to commune with God. What a marvelous privilege - to commune directly with the Living God!

I often find that when I am reading the Word of God, I will stop frequently and begin praying. It is as if God is teaching me His Word and at the same time prompting me to pray for the things that are His will for my life. Of course, I John 5:14-15 underscores this symbiotic relationship between God’s will and prayer, “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.”

I don’t think anyone of us is ever truly satisfied with our prayer life but if we want to experience the power of God and see our churches and ourselves revived, we need to begin with prayer. God will answer if we are faithful.

“In the spiritual sphere, the riches garments of the soul are spun on the looms of prayer and dyed in the travail that fills up the sufferings of Christ.” – Leonard Ravenhill

No comments: