Monday, April 13, 2015

The Secret to Answered Prayer

By Allen White

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8

Once a year, my children disguise themselves, walk up to neighbors’ houses, and receive vast
amounts of candy. Yes, our family participates in this Halloween ritual. It’s a great way to get to know our neighbors and to get free candy.

Most of us have done the same thing. The candy does not come automatically. There is a bit of a formula involved. (1) Dress up. (2) Knock on the door. (3) Say, “Trick or Treat.” (4) Collect candy. If you skip step 2, then you will find yourself all dressed up with nothing to eat. No knocking equals no candy. Even a child understands that.

Sometimes when we pray we ask God to bless us. Then, God blesses us, but we don’t think that God listened to our prayers. Maybe God blessed us with an unpleasant circumstance that will help to develop our character. That’s not a bad thing in the end, but it might not be what we anticipated as the answer to our prayer.

If you want God to do specific things, then you need to ask God for specific things. Some Christians are afraid of teaching like this. “What if people ask for things they shouldn’t have? What if they ask for things that will shipwreck their faith?” The simple solution is this: God is a big boy. He can take care of Himself.

God’s answers always come in three varieties: Yes, No and Wait. If we ask for something in line with God’s will for us, the answer is usually Yes or Wait. If we ask for something that might harm us, then God’s answer is No. God has promised to meet all of our needs, but not all of our greeds.

If we don’t ask God for anything, He will fulfill that request as well. “Where is God? Why isn’t He helping me?” What have you asked Him for? Nothing. Mystery solved.

What do you need right now? What problem needs a solution? Where do you need God’s provision? How could you use God’s wisdom? Ask God, and then pay attention to what happens next. You will have the answer before you know it.

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