Who does God listen to?

My first encounter with prayer was before I was a Christian. The memory of it is profound and lasting and more than 30 years later I remember it very clearly. I was reminded of it today while climbing the stairs of a waterslide – out of breath. My mum had taken my siblings and myself on a holiday to visit my Uncle and Aunt in QLD. We were going to a water slide park and I had left my ventolin inhaler in Melbourne. In front of my mum my Uncle says – let’s pray for Catherine. Everyone gathered in a circle and held hands. They all closed there eyes but I kept mine open….I had never seen anything like this in my life. NO EYES CLOSED FOR ME PEOPLE.  It was short and sweet and I distinctly remember my Uncle praying that ‘Jesus would give me breath’ that day. All day as I climbed the stairs at the water park I whispered ‘Jesus give me breath. Jesus give me breath’ and not once did I get short of breath or asthma. I came to the conclusion (having no grid for healing or miracles) that I must have breathed more often because of all that praying I did and therefore had a greater intake of oxygen stopping me from getting asthma.

Prayer along with forgiveness is one of the strongest Christian beliefs there is. But why does God seem to hear some prayers and not others? I think that God probably does hear all prayers but it some seems some are answered and others are not. In the words of Professor Julius Sumner Miller …..Why is it so?

There is a verse in the book of James that says this:

‘The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.’

What this verse tells me is that is it possible to pray weak and ineffective prayer. Hands up if you want to pray those prayers? What then makes a prayer powerful and effective?  I believe that one of the answers is in that verse….it is the prayer of a ‘righteous’ person that has power.

The word ‘righteous’ has been somewhat maligned in our culture and seems to hold some negative connotation. I think in the minds of most they see a ‘pious’ and ‘judgemental’ person who embodies some kind of ‘spirituality’ that is not really very appealing. Or is it just me that thinks that? On the contrary being righteous is something so much more tangible, down-to-earth, real and practical. Being ‘righteous’ is defined as “right-doing or right-ways”. God has a ‘right way’ about Him and when we get to know Him we can ‘know how to live right and do right’ also. A ‘righteous’ person is someone who is desiring to ‘think right and do right according to God’.

Why does being righteous or unrighteous have an impact on the effectiveness of our prayer life? Having God’s thought and heart in prayer aligns our prayer with God’s thought and heart for the situation we are praying into. For example – someone hurts me badly so I pray, ‘God, break their arms off and hit them with them’. This is a great example of a ‘weak’ prayer because it is not aligned with God’s thought and heart toward that other person. The moment I pray ‘God I need help with how I am feeling so I can forgive this person’ you are entering into a space that God is already sitting and His hand moves with you to bring answer to that prayer.

Being ‘righteous in prayer’ is more about understanding what the ‘right’ prayer is for the situation. When I pray I find I go on a journey to uncover and discover Gods thought and heart on the matter so that I can then align myself with it. Then I see His answer come powerfully and effectively.

Thirty years ago my Uncle David prayed that very powerful and effective prayer over me and God answered it. I know that He prayed many ‘right prayers’ over my life that God is still aligning me with them even though he died some years ago. I wish he was still praying for me.  During an open mike time at his funeral I remember many people from the community getting up and attesting to my Uncle’s ‘powerful prayers’. It was amazing to hear them recount incredible encounters with God they had because my Uncle offered to pray for them and God answered that prayer.

To be brutally honest I am just too busy to waste time praying weak prayers. May God continue to bring me into His thoughts and teach me His ways so I pray powerful and effective prayer in the lives of those around me.

Over and Out,

Catherine xoxox

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3 Comments to “Who does God listen to?”

  1. I’d like to pay this in, please diflucan buy Prescription Record Card for 10 years following the date of issue.

  2. I read your linked post and I think you flesh an aspect that I just touch on which is that one of the key’s to answered prayer is to sit in the space of humility. I really, really like that. It’s really challenged me and got me thinking some more. Thanks xo

  3. I am constantly humbled by the way the teaching of God keeps growing all over. Your drift here is identical to what I have taught, and recently blogged about (http://viewoutsidethepew.com/2012/09/25/why-pray-at-all/). Especially your inspired words of prayer being “a journey to uncover and discover Gods thought and heart on the matter so that I can then align myself with it”. If only more people were in line to align with the Divine. Thanks for your affirming testimony.

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