You Have the Privilege of Prayer
“Why pray when you can worry?” asks a plaque that I have seen in many homes. One of the best remedies for a troubled heart is prayer.
“O what peace we often forfeit,
O what needless pain we bear;
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer.”
However, if God is going to answer our prayers and give us peace in our hearts, there are certain conditions that we must meet. In fact, the meeting of these conditions is a blessing in itself!
We Must Pray In Faith
“I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.”
John 14:12 (NLT)
The fact that Jesus did return to the Father is an encouragement, for there He is interceding for us. He will have more to say about this intercessory work later in His discourse.
The “greater works [things]” would apply initially to the Apostles who were given the power to perform special miracles as the credentials of their office (Rom. 15:18-19; Heb. 2:3-4). These miracles were not greater in quality, for “the servant is not greater than his lord” (John 13:16), but rather in scope and quantity. Peter preached one sermon and 3,000 sinners were converted in one day! The fact that ordinary people performed these signs made them even more wonderful and brought great glory to God (Acts 5:13-16).
Of course, it is not the believer himself who does these “greater things”; it is God working in and through the believer: “The Lord working with them” (Mark 16:20). “For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him” (Phil. 2:13). Faith and works must always go together, for it is faith that releases the power of God in our lives.
Both love and obedience are part of effective prayer. “If I had not confessed the sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.“ (Ps. 66:18).
We do not obey the Lord simply because we want our prayers answered, somewhat like the attitude of a child just before Christmas. We obey Him because we love Him; and the more we obey Him, the more we experience His love. To “keep” His commandments means to value them, treasure them, guard them, and do them. “I have not departed from his commands, but have treasured his words more than daily food.“ (Job 23:12).
Believing prayer is wonderful medicine to soothe a troubled heart. Meditate on Philippians 4:6-7—and then put it into practice!
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
We Must Pray In Christ’s Name
You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father. Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it!
John 14:13-14 (NLT)
This is not a “magic formula” that we automatically attach to our prayer requests, guaranteeing that God will answer.
To ask anything of the Father, in the name of Jesus, means that we ask what Jesus would ask, what would please Him, and what would bring Him glory by furthering His work.
When a friend says to you, “You may use my name!” he is handing you a great privilege as well as a tremendous responsibility.
Expect Greater Things, Pathway Of Miracles
A vital key to walking in the pathway of God’s miracles is to stay available to the implications of Jesus’ words here. When blessing comes in your work, service, or ministry, it is tempting to accept that this is “all” God has for you – to find it easy to stop and rest, rather than keeping your hand to the plow (Luke 9:62).
Instead refuse to allow the blessings of God’s grace on your work to lead you to think that He may not be ready to do even more in your life. He does not call you to attempt to produce more, but to ask and believe Him for more – for greater works He has in store for us to receive and, by His grace, achieve for His kingdom’s purposes and glory. Keep your heart set and ready for the next advance for His kingdom!
We Must Pray In Loving Obedience
“If you love me, obey my commandments.”
John 14:15 (NLT)
When you love someone, you honor his or her name; and you would never use that name in a demeaning manner. Love is an important theme in the Gospel of John; it is used as a verb or noun a total of fifty-six times.
Keeping the commandments doesn’t produce loving God. But loving God will produce keeping His commandments. There’s a big difference between those two approaches.
DECLARATION OF FAITH
Through Jesus, I am fully capable of doing the very same things that He did in his earth walk. He has even made me able to do greater things than He did, because He has risen and gone on to the Father.
Jesus himself, through His name, brings to pass whatever I command in this natural world. Everything outside of His will must bow to His authority.
Father, in Jesus’ name I ask You to prosper all that I set my hand to do today. In accordance with Your word, fill my treasuries to overflowing. Increase my holdings that I may have the means to give in ever-increasing measure. Make me a tool to bless this earth. Use me to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, give comfort to the widow and orphan, and win lost souls. Advance your kingdom through me, Father in Jesus’ name.
DECLARATION OF FAITH
Whatever I ask for, in Jesus’ name, I receive so that the Father may be glorified through the Son. Only through Jesus are my prayers answered. He has given me the very power of attorney to use His name. It is like a legal document proclaiming that all of the power that is in His name is now mine to use. I can freely draw upon all that He is and all that He has. Whatever I have asked for in His name, I can confidently claim as done.
I love Jesus with all of my heart and I obey his commandments.
I prayed this declaration of faith in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Andrew Wommack’s Living Commentary
Bible Exposition Commentary – Be Transformed