Need a prayer answered? A simple how-to

So, by a show of hands, who has ever asked God a question? Yep, that’s what I thought. I know you probably didn’t actually raise your hand, but you know you’ve asked questions of God before. Now, again by a show of hands, how many of those questions were something along the lines of either: 1. “God why is _________ happening?” or 2. “God, what do I do about ________?”. (Did you raise your hand that time? Still no? Fine then.)

It is nearly a daily occurrence for some of us, this asking questions of God. And for all of us, at some time or another, there are burning questions that we yearn to have answered by God. We cry out and pray and search scripture and pray some more…and then get frustrated because we feel like God hasn’t answered the question.

What you should know, however, is that there is a remedy to this. And it is simple…excruciatingly, maddeningly simple. Here it is: If you want your prayers answered, seek God. Now, now…don’t stop reading just because I’m right about the remedy being simple. Let me explain.

Perhaps a helpful caveat, a useful explanation, would be this: seek God all the time. I think what we are often guilty of is this: the most fervent prayers and most desperate desire to know God’s will comes only when we are seeking something for ourselves. I’m not saying it’s wrong to pray when we need something, or when we need our prayers answered. Not at all! In fact, please plainly understand me to say: pray and seek God’s answers! Here’s what I’m encouraging you to do even more though: don’t let your prayers be fervent ONLY when you need some big answer. Don’t allow your pursuit of God be characterized by periods of slack seeking punctuated by spikes of earnest prayer when you need something.

I don’t think it’s too harsh to say that we have made an idol of ourselves when we pray hardest and seek God most fervently only so that we might get an answer to some question/need we have at that particular time. Seek God fervently ALL THE TIME. Do you? Do you yearn to know the mind of Christ? Do you earnestly seek out His will and His aid in your everyday life? OR are you content with simple maintenance spirituality, saying a prayer in the morning and reading a verse or two of Scripture?

What if we were a people who daily cried out to God with the same sort of passion that comes when we are in dire need? What if we recognized that we are in dire need to know and be led by God EVERY DAY? What glorious things would certainly come about! God would be glorified in our dependence on Him. The kingdom of God on earth would be expanded. People would be brought to salvation.

Now, a secondary benefit of the sort of lifestyle that seeks God fervently day in and day out is this: in our moments of dire need we will be able to hear God’s answers and sense His leading more quickly and clearly. If we seek to know God daily, we will know His mind in our times of struggle. If we seek Him in every moment, the answers to our questions will be less of a struggle because we are nearer to God and are in the habit of being led by Him.

It’s far easier to know the direction God would have us take when we are already flowing between the banks of His grace. So, seek God! Seek Him not just when you feel your need most urgently. Seek Him all the time. Seek Him FERVENTLY all the time.

Seek Him.

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