What are some hindrances to prayer? What are some wrong mindsets about asking God for something, especially material blessings? Is an extravagant life fitting for a servant of God? We discussed all these with a group. Tune in here and get your mind thinking and learning from different points shared among the group.
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Scriptures for Reading:
- Mark 11:22-24
- Psalm 22:1-2
- 1 Peter 3:7
- Matthew 5:23-24
- James 4:3
Quotable Quotes from Ptr. Mike
When it comes to extravagance,
the principle is simple:
"We should not love the things of the world."
There's nothing wrong with becoming rich because of your efforts.
But when you enrich yourself at the expense of your people,
that's when it's wrong.
When you enrich yourself at the expense of a lot of people suffering,
that's when it becomes wrong.
So the principle here is, Christ simply said,
"Follow me and just give up all of these things, your desire for all of these things."
3 Hindrances to Prayer:
- Relational Problems
- Wrong Motives
This was asked: How can you phrase your prayers, so it will succeed? ( in a way that will cause God to more likely hear you)
- Ask in the right spirit.
- Have nothing in your heart/life that hinders.
- Be open to God; abandoning yourself to Him and His will.
Re. the Lord's Prayer:
- It is a good model to follow.
- Jesus Himself shared this model with us.
- You can pray over the Lord's Prayer, thoughtfully.
- It gives you a foundation for your life and prayers to expand on.
- Remember that Christ was not simply saying “These are the components…” In other passages, He further elaborated on the motives behind the prayers. So, we can make this as our model prayer, but at the same time, we look at other passages for what is, what should not be there, and what should we be like.
Re. ministers who live and spend extravagantly.
- Think. Christ, Himself did not pursue that.
- Paul himself worked and didn't just depend on others to help him make ends meet.
- It is simply not a good witness. The world mocks Christianity because of what these people do.
- Think. Quite simply, it is "spending your money on pleasures."
- The money you splurge for extravagance can help a cause or other missionaries who have nothing.
- Extravagant spending is simply wrong.
Other Thinking Points discussed:
- God answers every prayer.
- Some prayers are wrong prayers.
- "Is God just really interested in hearing you pray about 'kingdom things'?"
- When there's nothing wrong with your prayer. When you ask for something good but God is not answering; is there a problem with your faith?
- Cherishing sin is about how you live with a certain sin in your life.
- To confess sin is to agree with God, to look at sin the same way He does, to have an agreement on what sin is in your life.
- The fruit of repentance is that you turn away from that sin afterward.
- Evaluating your life and checking for "cherished", unconfessed sin is like personal housekeeping; one you do regularly.
- When you ask with wrong motives, you ask for your pleasure, you often ask selfishly.
- Life in the time of Jesus is different from what it is today, but the principles are the same. And the Christian can take the principle and apply it to his particular situation.
- Sometimes you can ask with the wrong motives and get what you want. But that did not come from God. You forced to have it.
- When material things and comforts become very important to you as a minister, something is wrong.
prepared by ALM
photo credit to Madison