Tag Archives: guidance

What happens after we pray?

by Richard Mansel, managing editor

We go to God in prayer and plead for his help. What happens next?
In order to answer this question, we must establish some foundation principles.

  • Nothing is too hard for God (Jeremiah 32:17Jeremiah 32:17
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    17 Ah Lord Yahweh! behold, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm; there is nothing too hard for you,

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  • God is omniscient (1 John 3:201 John 3:20
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    20 because if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.

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  • God never tires (Isaiah 40:28Isaiah 40:28
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    28 Have you not known? have you not heard? The everlasting God, Yahweh, the Creator of the ends of the earth, doesn’t faint, neither is weary; there is no searching of his understanding.

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  • God will never desert us (Hebrews 13:5Hebrews 13:5
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    5 Be free from the love of money, content with such things as you have, for he has said, “I will in no way leave you, neither will I in any way forsake you.”

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  • God wants everyone to be saved (John 3:16John 3:16
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    16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

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    ; 2 Peter 3:92 Peter 3:9
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    9 The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as some count slowness; but is patient with us, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

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  • Sin separates man from God’s care (Isaiah 59:1-2Isaiah 59:1-2
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    59 1 Behold, Yahweh’s hand is not shortened, that it can’t save; neither his ear heavy, that it can’t hear: 2 but your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.

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    ; Psalm 66:18Psalm 66:18
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    18 If I cherished sin in my heart, The Lord wouldn’t have listened.

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  • God listens to the righteous and obedient (James 5:16James 5:16
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    16 Confess your offenses to one another, and pray one for another, that you may be healed. The insistent prayer of a righteous person is powerfully effective.

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    ; Revelation 2:10Revelation 2:10
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    10 Don’t be afraid of the things which you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested; and you will have oppression for ten days. Be faithful to death, and I will give you the crown of life.

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  • Prayer requires humility (Luke 18:10-14Luke 18:10-14
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    10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray; one was a Pharisee, and the other was a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed to himself like this: ‘God, I thank you, that I am not like the rest of men, extortioners, unrighteous, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week. I give tithes of all that I get.’ 13 But the tax collector, standing far away, wouldn’t even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

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  • Prayer must be for our own spiritual good (James 4:3James 4:3
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    3 You ask, and don’t receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it for your pleasures.

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  • God takes care of Christians (Matthew 6:25-34Matthew 6:25-34
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    25 Therefore, I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life: what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor yet for your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 See the birds of the sky, that they don’t sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns. Your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you of much more value than they? 27 “Which of you, by being anxious, can add one cubit to the measure of his life? 28 Why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They don’t toil, neither do they spin, 29 yet I tell you that even Solomon in all his glory was not dressed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today exists, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, won’t he much more clothe you, you of little faith? 31 “Therefore don’t be anxious, saying, ‘What will we eat?’, ‘What will we drink?’ or, ‘With what will we be clothed?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first God’s Kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore don’t be anxious for tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Each day’s own evil is sufficient.

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  • God’s concept of time is different than ours (2 Peter 3:82 Peter 3:8
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    8 But don’t forget this one thing, beloved, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

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  • God’s definition of wealth is different than ours (Matthew 6:25-34Matthew 6:25-34
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    25 Therefore, I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life: what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor yet for your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 See the birds of the sky, that they don’t sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns. Your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you of much more value than they? 27 “Which of you, by being anxious, can add one cubit to the measure of his life? 28 Why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They don’t toil, neither do they spin, 29 yet I tell you that even Solomon in all his glory was not dressed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today exists, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, won’t he much more clothe you, you of little faith? 31 “Therefore don’t be anxious, saying, ‘What will we eat?’, ‘What will we drink?’ or, ‘With what will we be clothed?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first God’s Kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore don’t be anxious for tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Each day’s own evil is sufficient.

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Christians approach God in prayer, knowing he will reply and do what is best for his children. We trust God completely when we pray (Hebrews 11:6Hebrews 11:6
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6 Without faith it is impossible to be well pleasing to him, for he who comes to God must believe that he exists, and that he is a rewarder of those who seek him.

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; Matthew 21:20-22Matthew 21:20-22
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20 When the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, “How did the fig tree immediately wither away?” 21 Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly I tell you, if you have faith, and don’t doubt, you will not only do what is done to the fig tree, but even if you told this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ it would be done. 22 All things, whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”

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What happens next is the embodiment of what separates man from God. In his time and in his way, God acts. However, we cannot see him as he moves all the pieces around through his divine providence (Romans 8:28Romans 8:28
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28 We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose.

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God always works his will but we cannot know what is happening behind the scenes. We just have to maintain our faith, trust and confidence. Walking in obedience and seeking his glory, we continue our Christian walk (Ephesians 4:1Ephesians 4:1
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4 1 I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to walk worthily of the calling with which you were called,

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Humans are naturally impatient, so we must resist that urge because God moves in his own mysterious patterns. We cannot look to God as one alternative among many. He must always be first in everything (Exodus 20:3Exodus 20:3
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3 You shall have no other gods before me.

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Trust God and prayer will accomplish extraordinary things. But, we must allow it to unfold as God desires because Satan will be filling us with doubt (1 Peter 5:81 Peter 5:8
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8 Be sober and self-controlled. Be watchful. Your adversary the devil, walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

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; John 8:44John 8:44
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44 You are of your father, the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and doesn’t stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks on his own; for he is a liar, and the father of it.

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Like Job, we must fall back on what we know about God and trust him above everything (Job 19:23-26Job 19:23-26
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23 “Oh that my words were now written! Oh that they were inscribed in a book! 24 That with an iron pen and lead They were engraved in the rock forever! 25 But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives. In the end, he will stand upon the earth. 26 After my skin is destroyed, Then in my flesh shall I see God,

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God is always faithful but he has millions of things working at once and we are but one piece in a puzzle that is larger than time. Understand what God is going through and be patient as he works and great blessings will be the result.

 

Jesus Stills the Storms of Life

We cringe when we hear, “Sit down. I have some bad news for you.” We steel our nerves for what is coming. All of us have suffered through hard times, some more cataclysmic than others. It is the most painful aspect of life. We must be able to deal with it in a healthy fashion. John 14:1-6John 14:1-6
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14 1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God. Believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions. If it weren’t so, I would have told you. I am going to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and will receive you to myself; that where I am, you may be there also. 4 Where I go, you know, and you know the way.” 5 Thomas says to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me.

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provides an avenue of comfort.

Jesus knew his death was imminent and sought to prepare his apostles. Jesus would be betrayed by one of their own, he would soon be crucified and all of them would be scattered. These men were in the midst of a storm and Jesus seeks to console them, as only he could.

By studying Jesus’ answer we can learn how to endure our suffering. If we are not a Christian, this lesson will hopefully illustrate what Christians have in Christ. It is a treasure worth pursuing.

First, Jesus is our peace. Jesus begins, “Let not your heart be troubled” (John 14:1John 14:1
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14 1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God. Believe also in me.

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, NKJV). Literally, it is “stop letting your heart be troubled.” Hugo McCord translates it, “stop letting your heart be disturbed.” We have power to decide whether we will be crushed by the storms of life or endure them.

While storms batter us, we have more control than we imagine when they come our way. The Apostle Paul said that nothing can “separate us from the love of Christ” (Romans 8:39Romans 8:39
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39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

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). The Psalmist wrote, “I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8Psalm 4:8
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8 In peace I will both lay myself down and sleep, For you, Yahweh alone, make me live in safety.

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Second, Jesus is our security. Why should they not be troubled? Jesus says, “trust in God, trust also in me” (John 14:1John 14:1
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14 1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God. Believe also in me.

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, NIV). Westcott translates it, “Believe in God, and yet more than this, let your faith find in Me one on whom it can rest.” Jesus knew they needed someone to be there for them to be a constant in the midst of confusion. The Lord is a “refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble” (Psalm 9:9Psalm 9:9
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9 Yahweh will also be a high tower for the oppressed; A high tower in times of trouble.

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Third, Jesus is our hope. Their fear needed reassurance that they would survive these storms. Hope is defined as the “expectation of future good.”

Jesus then goes on to say, “In My Father’s house are many mansions” (John 14:2John 14:2
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2 In my Father’s house are many mansions. If it weren’t so, I would have told you. I am going to prepare a place for you.

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). Even after his death, their best interest would reside strongly in his heart. He would provide a permanent residence for them. The meaning is not that there will be literal mansions in heaven but that there will be plenty of room for all of us.

No one will have to be turned away because there is no room at the inn.

Jesus wanted them to believe him, wholeheartedly. Seeking to assure them, he says, “if it were not so, I would have told you” (John 14:2John 14:2
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2 In my Father’s house are many mansions. If it weren’t so, I would have told you. I am going to prepare a place for you.

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). He had never lied to them so his word should be a guarantee (Titus 1:2Titus 1:2
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2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who can’t lie, promised before eternal times;

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Fourth, Jesus is completeness. After he tells the apostles that he will prepare a home for them he says that they know the way to their new home. Thomas speaks for the others and asks how they can know the way? Jesus adds, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6John 14:6
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6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me.

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Jesus would not show them the way, he would come and get them and take them to his home. Isaiah 35:8Isaiah 35:8
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8 A highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it, but is shall be for for him who walks in the Way. Wicked fools will not go there.

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calls salvation the “Highway of Holiness.” Scripture is the road map to heaven.

In Christ we can say, “O death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” (2 Corinthians 15:552 Corinthians 15:55
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Izbrano poglavje ne obstaja!

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