is a way for us Christians to maintain a proper relationship with God, especially prayers in the morning and at night. But many people often do not receive the Lord’s response or feel His presence. So, how should we pray so that the Lord will listen?
1.Worship God With Heart and Honesty
Thesaid: “[W]hen the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeks such to worship Him” (John 4:23). However, we often do not pray to God with our hearts, but go through the motions to speak some words, and we often make great empty talks with inaccurate words.
We all know that God is faithful, in God there is no deceit or fakeness. God is sincere to everyone and He hopes that we can be honest. Just as God says: “The minimum that God requires of man is that man be able to open his heart to Him. If man gives his true heart to God and speaks what is truly in his heart, then God is willing to work in him. What God desires is not the twisted heart of man, but a pure and honest heart. If man does not speak from his heart to God, then God will not move his heart or work in him. Therefore, the crux of prayer is to speak to God from your heart, telling Him your shortcomings or rebellious disposition, laying yourself completely open before Him; only then will God be interested in your prayers, or else He will hide His face from you.” So, when we pray, whether we are in a weak or strong condition, we should speak to God; whatever thoughts or plans, sorrow or troubles, we should open up our hearts to tell God. Sometimes we are too embarrassed to tell others about something, but we can’t conceal the truth from God. We should open our hearts and tell the truth to Him. When God sees that we have no concealment but are open and sincere to Him in prayer, He will guide us to understand His will. Then our troubles and difficulties will be solved.
Moreover, when we pray, we should quiet our heart before God and pray to Him with a true heart. We cannot be of two minds toward Him or treat Him in a perfunctory manner. We honor our parents and have a conscientious attitude when talking with them, isn’t that because they are our elders and have raised us? God created us, bestows us life and provides us with everything, shouldn’t we hold Him in reverence when we pray to Him? Whether we pray to God or seek His will, we are aiming to establish a proper relationship with Him and asking Him to resolve our practical difficulties. And finally, we ourselves are the beneficiaries.
2.Have a Submissive Heart as We Pray
In our prayers, we often want God to do things according to our own will. Furthermore, when in tribulations and trials, we disobey God’s orchestrations and arrangements, wanting Him to take away the bitter cup, so that we would no longer suffer. As a result, the more we pray in this way, the further we stray from God.
Every day when we pray to God, we should make sure that God is the Creator and we are under His sovereignty. Whatever happens in our life, regardless of whether it is a big thing or a small thing, it is from God’s orchestration and arrangement. Thus we should pray on everything we encounter, “God, I don’t know the truth and what I should do to be after Your heart on this matter. May You enlighten me. Amen!” If we pray like this, we will please God. We stand in the place as a creation of God and pray to Him, bow down before Him, worship Him, and then thank and praise Him. This is the relationship between a created being and God. When God has a place in our hearts, and we stand in the place of a created being to submit to His work and act according to His words, we will have a normal relationship with God. Then we can gain the work of the Holy Spirit and enjoy the presence of God.
When it comes to Job, at the news of losing his livestock all over the mountains and his children as well, he knew that his all was bestowed by God. From the outside, his livestock were stolen away by robbers and his children were beaten to death. Actually, it was God testing him. Thus he fell to the ground to worship and pray to God with a submissive heart. Later when his body was covered in boils, although he was in pain and sorrow, he would still rather curse the day of his birth than blame God. He said, “Jehovah gave, and Jehovah has taken away; blessed be the name of Jehovah” (Job 1:21). If we can treat God as God, like Job, then God will guide us at any time when He sees that we have a place for Him in our heart. Then we will be keener and keener in spirit and our mind will become much clearer. Anytime when we have the least bit of corruption or incorrect condition, we will realize it right away and solve it in a timely manner. Then we will have a closer and closer relationship with God and make a quicker and quicker progress in our life.
3.Pray to the Lord to Guide Us to Find His Footprints
We all know that in the latter days of the Age of Law, Judaism lost God’s glory. With the name of “Jesus,” God began a new stage of redemptive work and initiated the Age of Grace. For those who didn’t accept the name of the Lord Jesus, when things happened to them, no matter how they prayed to Jehovah God, they couldn’t obtain the work of the Holy Spirit, and God would not listen to their prayer.
Today, no matter how we pray in the name of the Lord Jesus, we can’t feel the Holy Spirit’s work, and we perceive the withering and darkness of the spirit and can’t feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. What’s more, we cling to eating, drinking, pleasures, and status and power. Co-workers struggle and fight against each other, committing sins continuously without receiving the discipline of the Holy Spirit. When we are overcome by transgressions, we do not feel indebted to God, just like unbelievers. It is obvious that the work of the Holy Spirit has shifted again. It is said in the Bible, “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (John 16:12–13). “And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejects me, and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:47–48). “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God” (1 Peter 4:17). From these verses, we can know that one who lives in sin can’t enter God’s kingdom. The Lord will come to express the truth and judge the world in the last days, which is inevitable. He fulfills what He has spoken. Only by hearing the words of the Holy Spirit in the last days can we obtain the work of the Holy Spirit, and only by accepting the Lord’s judgment can we be cleansed of our sins. So, we must pray to the Lord to guide us to find the wellspring of living water so that we can be watered and fed. Wherever the Lord goes, we will follow Him to the end. I’d like to pray together with brothers and sisters who have the same wish as me for the Lord to lead us and help us follow His footsteps, because the Lord once made a promise to us, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7).
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