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PRAYER : TALKING WITH GOD

 

V.I.P.
In our lifetime we encounter many people that we'd like to get to know better. We get to know people better by communicating with them…..talking, phoning, writing, e-mailing, snail-mailing, texting etc.
Many of us would like to know God better…that is, fellowshipping with Him and being able to talk with Him.

Talking with God is called PRAYER, because the communication system is so unique. It travels farther than any satellite tele-communication known to man, and surpasses any cell-phone in an instant.
Prayer----it beats ITT, MCI, Sprint, Teledesic, Iridium, Milstar, Navstar and any other star and ALL communication-Systems combined…
"before they call, I will answer." Isaiah 65:24

Our communication in prayer is with Someone so extraordinarily special…. The most V.I.P. [very important Person] of the whole universe…the One Who sits at the Control Center of the entire Universe and is Highest in Command.  

PASSWORD
We access God through the code-name "Jesus Christ"
John 14:13,14 . It is then that the Divine royal scepter is extended toward us, and audience is given…as in Esther 5:1-3 .
We notice here that Esther does not access the royal mother ( Queen of Heaven ), or friends ( patron saints ) of the King:

"For there is ONE God, and ONE MEDIATOR, between God and men, the man Christ
Jesus" I Timothy 2:5

Mary is not a co-redemptrix, nor someone that we pray to.
 It is wrong to speak to the spirits of the departed ( Mary, saints etc. ) , which in reality is conversing with devils:
" I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils" I Corinthians 10:20.

Since it is God alone that we are accessing, it is good to picture the One we are talking with:
"Thy Face LORD will I seek". Psalm 27:8

Let us picture this scene given to us in Scripture: "And they saw the God of Israel; and there was under His feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness." Exodus 24:10
Revelation Chapter One also gives us a picture of our Risen Lord.

UNLIMITED ACCESS
We enter into His Presence, asking for
the Blood covering of His only Son, Jesus . Hebrews 10:19.

SEEING GOD

"Where there is no vision, the people perish." Proverbs 29:18

Isaiah begins one of the first descriptions for us, showing forth the majesty of our Lord Jesus Christ:
"I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims…and one cried unto another and said,
'Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts (angelic armies): the whole earth is full of His Glory."Isaiah 6:3
This tells us that Jesus is the Sustainer and the Beauty of His creation…
"I see His Blood upon the rose, and in the stars the glory of His eyes"… [poet unknown…Gerald Manley Hopkins?]

OUR GOD IS A CONSUMING FIRE Hebrews 12:29
…"the Son of God Who hath His eyes like unto a flame of fire,
and His feet are like fine brass" Rev. 2:18

Next, Ezekiel brings forth the brilliance of God's Light and Splendor into view in Chapter 1:4 " a Fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it". The fiery Shekinah Glory--God's aura-- pulsates from the Almighty in the vision given in Ezekiel 1:26-28. Here we see the dazzling sapphire throne of God, and the golden amber topaz of His fiery glow emanating from His Person……

"This was the appearance of the likeness of the Glory of the LORD."[Glow-ry] Ezekiel was so overcome with the Heavenly Vision, that he was slain in the Spirit, (fell as though dead, yet alive)."And when I saw it, I fell upon my face"… Daniel (10:15-19) and John (Rev. 1:17) both were also slain in the Spirit when they received their Holy visions.

Here is the vision John saw:
"And in the midst of the seven candlesticks One like unto the Son of Man [ Jesus ], clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
His head and His hairs were white like wool, as white as snow,
and His eyes were as a flame of fire;
And His feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace;
and His Voice as the sound of many waters." Rev.1:13-15…(see also Psalm 29 for Voice.)

God is Light [ 1 John 1:5 ] and dwells in Light [ Psalm 104:2 ]. Habakkuk also saw the Light of God:
"His glory covered the heavens, and the earth was full of His praise. And His brightness was as the Light;
He had horns [ shafts of Light, rays, beams ] coming out of His hand: and there was the hiding of His power."
Habakkuk 3:3-6
Truly, our God is an awesome God.

EL OLAMGod--from Everlasting to Everlasting [Age to Age]
from vanishing point to vanishing point

Next, we transport our minds to the Heavenly Command Center through the picture given us in Daniel 7:9--14 wherein the "Ancient of Days"
[ God the Father ] is shown with pure white hair and wearing a bright white garment. He is seated upon a candescent throne, flickering with a fiery glow….. "and His wheels as burning fire".

SABAOTHLORD OF ANGELS ; Lord of the Heavenly Host

"A fiery stream came forth from before Him"….. the millions of angels for His courtiers.
God "maketh His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire." Hebrews 1:7 This is truly a majestic and awesome sight.
Romans 9:29 and James 5:4 refer to God as "Lord Sabaoth"…Commander-in-Chief
of the Heavenly army of angels (see also Joshua 5:13-15.)
These are the Guardian angels that we pray to God daily for our protection as in
Psalm 91,
"Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He shall presently give Me more than 12 legions of angels ? [ 72,000 mighty angels ]"
Matthew 26:53

And then we see the Son of Man (Yeshua Jesus) brought near and given dominion over the earth, as stated in Psalm 2. He is "chiefest among 10,000" (Canticle of Canticles 5:10 ).
Thus we see the Authority of God--the Everlasting Father--giving all authority to His Son.
As we put on the mind of the Spirit--
Romans 8:27-- and picture these scenes given to us in the Word, we are blessed:
"Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God." [ Matthew 5: 8 ]

KING OF SAINTS Revelation 15:3
Then
Jude 14 describes for us the magnificent re-entrance of Jesus at His Second Coming :
"Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints",… and St. John continues,

"And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True,
and in righteousness He doth judge and make war.
His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns;
And He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself.
And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and His name is called The WORD of God.
And the armies which were in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean…
And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written
KING OF KINGS and LORD of LORDS." Revelation 19: 11-16

THRONE OF RED, WHITE and GREEN JEWELS
(Sardius, Jasper and Emerald)

In Revelation 4: 2, 3, we picture God's Throne glistening like jasper and red jewels, surrounded by an emerald Bow (rainbow).
Truly a banquet for the eyes to picture the beauty and splendor of God's majesty.

Around the Almighty are the 24 elders in white raiment with sparkling golden crowns on their heads, paying homage.
The Presence of God is so OTHER, that lightening and thunder reverberate from His Throne, reminding us of God's Almighty and Unlimited Power; thus calling forth the utmost respect, reverence, and awe due Him.

"Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for THEM THAT LOVE HIM." I Corinthians 2: 9

Isaiah 64 :4 “ For since the beginning of the world, men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen O God, beside Thee , What He hath prepared for him that waiteth for Him.”


24 / 7
The Four Living Creatures around the Throne worship in praise 24 hours a day, every day and every night, non-stop… year-in and year-out saying,
"Holy, Holy, Holy…Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come." Revelation 4:8.
When lying awake at night without sleep, it is good to join in that chorus of praise till sleep comes.
Jesus often prayed throughout the long night:
Luke 6:12 ... Genesis 32:24, ... 1 Samuel 15:11, .. Psalm 119:62 and Acts 16:25

In deepest worship and humility, the elders cast their crowns before the Throne saying,
"Thou art worthy O Lord, to receive GLORY, and HONOR and POWER,
For Thou hast created all things and for Thy pleasure they are and were created."
Rev. 4:11 …also John 1:1-3 . .... "I and My Father are one" John 10:30

LION OF the TRIBE of JUDAHROOT OF DAVID -- Revelation 5
unique in all of History, having never succumbed to temptation, though He was truly tempted

We now see 'The Son of Man' Dan. 7: 13 portrayed as a Lamb slain, and yet alive.
Alive and victorious as a Lion---the Lion of the tribe of Judah. He comes to Redeem and deliver His people : SHILOH--'He Whose right it is is' Genesis 49:10 --, for NO ONE ever born, from Adam to the Last Man, ever remained sinless enough Romans 3:23 to be granted the deed to planet Earth by the One in Total Command. No one but the Lamb. Therefore He is worthy to be our High-Priest…"for Thou wast slain and hast
redeemed us to God BY THY BLOOD out of every kindred and tongue and people and nation."Revelation 5: 9 .
Blood means 100 % commitment. Jesus could go no further in His love for our Redemption.

We now can come to our High-Priest Jesus in PRAYER because He paid the price for our audience. We are priests (pray-ers…..interceeders) as it says,

"And (He) hast made us unto our God, kings and priests Rev. 1:6 . And we shall reign with Christ during the Third Millennium. Rev. 20:4

As priests, each morning we unite with all the choirs of angels (seraphim and cherubim too), the elders and
the 4 living beings in praise saying,
"Worthy is the Lamb (Jesus) that was slain to receive POWER and RICHES, and WISDOM, and STRENGTH, and HONOR, and GLORY and BLESSING."Revelation 5:12

ALL-INCLUSIVE PRAISE
"And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying:
(this includes every living and deceased person since Adam, sinner and saint; and all
demonic spirits too, along with the heavenly creatures…EVERYONE ever created will
echo in unison )….

"BLESSING and HONOR and GLORY and POWER be unto Him that sitteth upon the Throne [the Father] and unto the Lamb [Jesus] forever and ever. Amen" Rev. 5:13

PERFUME OF PRAYER
Then all of our prayers are brought as a fragrant bouquet before the Throne---golden vials of incense wafting before the mind of God.
This is the point of interaction with God--our hands clasped in His, working out His
plan and our particulars…God and man communicating together.

How can this be? "What is man, that Thou art mindful of Him?" Psalm 8:4 and Hebrews 2:6 …that we should reason with God? Isaiah 1: 18 ….dust with Infinite Light … clay with All Power? It is incomprehensible
Yet it is our daily privilege that we dare not forfeit….to hush out the world and come to our Greatest Friend,
Knowing we are accepted in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:6

WHAT SHALL I SAY ?
When we call our friend up on the telephone, do we blurt out our intent at the first?
Usually not. First we say something pleasant. Well that's just how it is with God. After getting clearance in the Name of Jesus Christ, and picturing the heavenly scenes, we give God our praise Ephesians 5:20 .
"Thank you God for this new day of life…thank you for the beauty of Your creation … for redeeming me … for our home and job, friends and family…for my health: eyesight and hearing etc….
I love you God; thank you for loving me."

The more specific the gratitude, the more heartfelt the prayer. It is good to be generous in our praise, and to back our words up with the Word: "take with you words", Hosea 14:2. We ought always to keep in mind that God daily loads us with benefits Psalm 68:19 , so we never run out of things to say.

As we become real before God and sincerely ardent, we are not embarrassed to express our love and affection for Him.
"Kiss the Son, lest He be angry" Psalm 2:12.
No one loves us like God loves us…..no one.

ALL I HAVE NEED OF, THY HAND HATH PROVIDED
"Ask anything in My Name, and it will be granted." John 14:13, 14 .
"Ye have not because ye ask not." James 4:2

Since God has placed us in a specific location, time, family and circumstance, we ought to pray for those concerns first:
our immediate family ( yourself, spouse and children)
our birth family (brothers, sisters, parents, kin)
"God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you."
I Samuel 12:23

We first bind the strongman over our households and family members Matthew 12:29, etc. by asking Jesus to bind the
Powers, Principalities, Mights, Thrones and Dominions, -- all spiritual wickedness in high places ---
and also to bind the rulers of the darkness of this world from coming against us.
Colossians 1:16 , .... Ephesians 1:21 ... Ephesians 6:12 and 1 Peter 3:22 ......"Lead us not into temptation"

We daily intercede for salvation, healing, and whatever else benefits a situation.
We negotiate like Abraham
Genesis 18:23--33 .
We are to be as persistent as the neighbor in
Luke 11: 5--8 and Luke 18:1-8.
We ask for Wisdom
James 1:5 …"and it shall be given him"
and for knowledge of the future
Daniel 2: 28, 29 and John 16:13
We ask for Understanding
Psalm 111:10
and for health and healing …"I AM the LORD that healeth thee" Exodus 15:26
We pray for Righteousness
Proverbs 2:20
And we ought always to pray for the leadership in our country, to allow us the freedom
to worship, freedom of conscience and freedom of assembly:

"I exhort therefore , that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
For kings ( leaders ) and for ALL that are in authority [ bosses ];
that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior;
Who will have ALL men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth." I Timothy 2: 1+2

We are to take our concerns to the Lord…
"casting all our cares upon Him, for He careth for us." 1 Peter 5:7

The song 'What a Friend we have in Jesus' expresses it so well:
"What a Friend we have in Jesus-- All our sins and griefs to bear.
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit… O what needless pain we bear;
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer ."
http://www.cyberhymnal.org/htm/w/a/f/wafwhij.htm

Our intimacy with God depends on how transparent we're willing to become…
How honest we are about ourselves. Then fervor can flow:
"I have come to cast fire upon the earth and what will I but that it be enkindled?" Luke 12:49

This is a time of privacy with God: "But thou when thou prayest, enter into thy closet,
and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret;
and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly." Matthew 6:6

We pray to be led of the Holy Spirit Romans 8:14 and Galatians 5:18;
And to be filled with the Holy Spirit
Ezekiel 47:1-5 and Ephesians 5:18 ;
And to be controlled by the Holy Spirit
Zechariah 4:12 .... Romans 8:4-14 .... James 3; ... and 2 Peter 1:5 in our daily lives.
It is then that we can be empowered by the Holy Spirit
Acts 1:8 and Mark 16: 17, 18.

A consistent and honest prayer life keeps us walking in the Spirit Romans 8:4 and in the Light I John 1:7 . A strong prayer life keeps us in the Word , always obeying the will of God…always abiding in His fellowship. Continual communication leads to communion with God…. full consciousness of His Abiding Presence. We can foretaste now the joys of Heaven, as we tabernacle with Him.

As we Listen to God in prayer, our Spirit is quickened by His Holy Spirit, ever leading us and guiding us on, giving us inclinations (hints) of His will for us. The more honest the walk, the more clearer the directions, as we test the spirits. ( I Thessalonians 5:21 and I John 4:1
We sense a witness within our spirit of the Holy Spirit ever giving counsel.
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God"
To test means to see if these inclinations are confirmed through other people and circumstances.

Staying in prayer until we recive an inner witness in our spirit is called 'Praying Through'…
"I will not let Thee go, except Thou bless me." Genesis 32:26. Tenacity counts.

This flow and exchange of conversation--pausing to Listen-- is what Prayer is all about---our Relationship with the Living God.
"Keep thy foot (watch your step) when thou goest to the house of God (in prayer) and be more ready to HEAR,
than to give the sacrifice of fools (
speaking glibly, mechanically, thoughtlessly daydreaming )
"for they consider not that they do evil. "
Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God:
for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: Ecclesiastes 5:1-3
It is good to listen quietly, being open to the Holy Spirit.

AFTERGLOW
Time permitting, there is a sweet afterglow from such "times of refreshing" Acts 3:19…a time for "Speaking to yourselves in psalms, and hymns and spiritual songs (
singing in tongues), singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; giving thanks always for all things"…
Ephesians 5:19

AMEN
Amen is a very important word. It is the Name of God…"saith the Amen" Revelation 3:14.
We close our time with God with the word "Amen" in respect to the division between the Holy and the unholy…the Sacred from the secular .
We are leaving the invisible aura of God's audience, although we never leave His Presence: "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee"
Hebrews 13:5.
Since we are living temples of the Holy Ghost, I Corinthians 3:16 and 6:19 we abide always in God's Presence, whether communing in prayer or not. But we do not leave the line dangling, as it were. We acknowledge the change in atmosphere as we "leave" to intermingle with the world.

We leave our prayer closets--and His Throne Room-- reluctantly ( not wanting to re-enter the RUSH-madness of this world and its many deadlines). We obey the directive that we are not to be kept out from this world John 17:15.
We can not become so 'heavenly minded that we are no longer earthly good'. We have "miles to go before we sleep"(Robert Frost)…obligations, responsibilities, and duties. We must always be about our Father's business. Luke 2:49.
And then Plunge! We're back into the secular world where there is unbelief, frustrations, harassments and deadlines.
We couldn't face it, but for the grace of God.

UNBROKEN CHAIN OF LOVE
The only thing that breaks fellowship with God, that hinders our prayer life, is sin…
our pride, self-will, disobedience and ego ( E.G.O.= edging God out)…
I Peter 3: 7+12; also Psalm 66:18.

We need to take a 'soul-bath' every night--making a check list of where we went wrong during the day and admitting it all, hiding nothing. He knows all about our attitude anyway, so we can't tell Him anything that He doesn't know about us already. His x-ray vision sees every neuron of emotion that went through us during the day.
"I am He which searcheth the reins (motives) and hearts (attitude)." Revelation 2: 23b.

"Confession is good for the soul", that is confession to God--Psalm 51:4 --and not to man, except when asking the injured party directly for forgiveness James 5:16 , or in discreet testimony. We often ask for His forgiveness Psalm 51, keeping short accounts.
This keeps our appointment on Judgement Day brief:"For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged."
1 Corinthians 11:31 . ( Taking a personal inventory and correcting our character defects )
And others have less of a chance to criticize us when we are considering our ways, and amending our faults.

We trust in His forgiveness "For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart and knoweth all things." I John 3:20. It is good to keep Psalm 32 in mind as we are cleansed from our sins."If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9.
True sorrow for sin leads to a changed heart and life.
Ezekiel 36:26
says "A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you."

OH THE COMFORT by Dinah M. Mulock
"Oh, the Comfort--the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a Person,
Having neither to weigh thoughts, nor measure words,
But pouring them all right out, just as they are…
Chaff and grain together;
Certain that a Faithful Hand will take and sift them---
Keep what is worth keeping---and with the breath of kindness
Blow the rest away."

From the Poem: "Friendship" from The Best Loved Poems of the American People
selected by Hazel Felleman ; Garden City Books 1936.

Our forthrightness and frankness with God allows us to sleep a sweet sleep of peace.
Psalm 127:2 .... Proverbs 3: 24 .... Ecclesiastes. 5:12 . Our transparency should be crystal clear.

S.O.S……SAVE OUR SOULS
Now, having said all of the above on prayer ( applying ourselves before, during and afterwards) it is imperative to add that there is no technique into the heart of God. The most powerful prayers found in the Bible were instantaneous one-liners; one such shouted in the heat of battle. Remember when Joshua prayed:

"Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon"
And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed…so the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day. And there was no day like that before it or after it, that the LORD hearkened unto the
voice of a man: for the LORD fought for Israel." Joshua 10:12-14.

Remember when King Hezekiah was miraculously cured because of his heartfelt prayer? 2 Kings 20:1-11
Isaiah also prayed in King Hezekiah's behalf, and God gave them a sign by having the shadow of the Sun dial return backward 10 degrees
[having the sun go backward in the sky]. "Is anything too hard for the LORD?" Genesis 18:14.
"Pray one for another, that ye may be healed…The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." James 5:16.

QUICK !
And then there was Peter who began sinking in the Lake and cried "Lord, save me!"
Those 3 little words defied gravity, as Peter surged upward upon the water again. Matthew 14:30

None of these prayers were ritual, rote, religion or rosaries … just plain and simple "Help!" The message got through, and was so powerful it overwhelmed the forces of nature, because of its sincerity. Depth is what counts … not length and breadth. Are we touching the sounding-board of our inner most being with God? Are we making conscious contact? A moved heart moves circumstances. Our Faith can move mountains (governments).

WILL HE FIND FAITH?
In the Last Days, right before Our Lord returns to earth, the question is raised:
"Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?" Luke 18:8

Not if we have become self-reliant, or if we have lost our attitude of gratitude.
Difficult times can wear us down. When so much evil is around us, it's hard to see the good, or to believe that goodness can ever come again.
Yet Corrie and Betsie Ten Boom testified out of the pit of WW II, that God is still there for you.
We can have that kind of Faith to believe and to pray.
"Men ought always to pray and not to faint." Luke 18:1
"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Galatians 6:9

PRAYER = TIME + ALONENESS
We will not become weary in prayer or give up, if we have purposed in our hearts to set aside TIME with the Lord…laying it upon the altar as a whole burnt offering. If we let go of other concerns, and make our TIME with the Lord our highest priority, we will become true prayer-warriors … someone God can count on to be there with Him. See
Exodus 17:9-12 where Moses interceded for the people, waging spiritual battle over Amalek till sundown.

And a warrior we must become! For Satan will remind us of 1,000 other things to be done. We are not ignorant of his devices 2 Corinthians 2:11 . He will distract us with every possible diversion:
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God,
And bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ" 2 Corinthians 10: 4, 5

Satan and his cohorts will have us wander in thoughts, and if we're tired enough, even to fall asleep. He will have us forget and neglect our prayer time as often as possible.
And then if we do become persistent, he'll remind us how good we are, so we can be puffed up with pride.
O many are the temptations to one who gets serious with God!

UNPLUG
And then we need to be ALONE in prayer. Jesus said to shut the door behind us. Close out the world, family, friends, TV, phone, radio and computer (hard to unconnect, in a "connected" world). Let nothing else take priority. Relish this exclusive TIME ALONE with God. No other TIME is like it. We build up our Relationship by spending TIME with our Beloved.

Remember the other 5 Virgins in
Matthew 25 ? Our Lord said He never knew them.
They never laid the gift of TIME on the altar of their day, and sacrificed it exclusively for Him in personal prayer. Remember those very spiritually-busy people in
Matthew 7:21-23 ? He didn't know them either.
They never came to the Garden ALONE and lingered with Him.
They only prayed in church or at conferences or other times like that. (en masse)

ALONENESS is special. It means that the other Person is special.
God wants to feel special with us. "Whom have I in heaven but Thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee." Psalm 73:25
"… holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord." Hebrews 12:14.

SHOULD I FAST AND PRAY ?
Fasting is a tricky thing. Most often it is put upon individuals by an organization rather than by the leading of the Holy Ghost. In such cases, it is better to not go along with the crowd, for that is merely submitting to peer pressure.

The Lord desires a free-will offering, not something put upon by intimidation.
However, if you are led of the Holy Ghost to back up your prayers with earnestness, then fast.
Go-without whatever is freely offered...like Anna in Luke 2:37
It could be a partial fasting of food , or for those matured in faith a day without food (until sundown), but only when led of the Holy Ghost.
It is good to fast. It is better to fast from gossip, bad habits etc….

REAL TRUE FASTING
"Is not this the fast that I have chosen? To loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free,
and that ye break every yoke?" Isaiah 58:5
(The reference here is for one to break the bondage of religiosity, as in
Matthew 23. )

"Is it not to deal bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house
[support ministries for the poor...non-government affiliated if possible].

When thou seest the naked, that thou cover him;
(Clothe with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His righteousness...
Matthew 22)
and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?"[ Isaiah 58:5-7 ].
We are to take care of those in our own households, as well as the poor. That's the fast that the Lord has chosen… rending our hearts, " and not our garments." Joel 2:13

CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME
"But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house,
he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel (an unbeliever)."
1 Timothy 5:8

What is our motive in fasting? …to be politically-correct?…photogenic?….
the object of someone's affections and vanities?
To feel very holy and religious ??
To go along with the crowd ??
Or is it to afflict our souls to better put on the mind of Christ, as did Peter and Cornelius in
Acts 10?

The problem with fasting and even planned-prayer etc. is that we can get caught up in Works…
Doing --- for the sake of doing.
"This is the work of God, that ye believe (trust) on Him whom He hath sent." John 6:29
In other words, relating with Jesus Christ in intimacy exceeds all other things, even our "works".

The days are most assuredly coming when a national calamity will occur, and then there will be time to fast
Joel Chapters 1 and 2.
At that time, the mourning and grave somber-mood will certainly occasion it.

Lastly, fasting is required for exorcism---casting out of demons.
[ Please see
Matthew 17:21 and Mark 9:29 ].
---This kind comes not out but by prayer and fasting---
The fasting referred to here may be required by the recipient, since many demons enter a person through alcohol and drugs etc. Unless that person totally abstains from such (100 % for a lifetime--one day at a time), one cannot expect deliverance. "Give yourselves to fasting and to prayer"...I Corinthians 7:5

HEAVENLY TREASURE
We need to come to God often in prayer, building up our heavenly bank account. Psalm 141:2 says,
"Let my prayer be set forth before Thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.
Psalm 55:17 says, "Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: And He shall hear my voice."

Prayer gets results. The results may include changing one's perspective on a matter. How often have we heard this phrase?….
"God is still on the Throne, and prayer changes things" (SouthWest Radio Church);
Also, "More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of " (Unknown).
"I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands."
\o/
1 Timothy 2:8

"Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves do not break through nor steal" Matthew 6:20

Are we building up incense for that special golden censer of prayers found in Rev. 8: 3, 4 for our present and future concerns?
An excellent treasury is to store-up intercessory prayer for our family and friends who may remain here during the Great Tribulation. We need to request before the Throne of God that they become Born-Again (John 3:16), and that they never take the 666 mark of the Beast, naming each one separately.
We pray that they will prefer anything rather than to conform to the Anti-Christ kingdom ... even martyrdom if need be.

And after they cross over into the Presence of God, they will see those golden censers of incense we prayed in their behalf, rising before the Throne of God , "grace to help in time of need" Hebrews 4:16.
We can store up that bank account now. The God of TIME sees Time as one. His perspective is not as fragmented as ours is.
Tomorrow is conjoined with today.

PRAYER PRECEDES ACTION
It is interesting to note that the incense of prayer precedes the judgements of God in WW III, as described in Revelation Chapter 8. Here we see the power of prayer:
"And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.
And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand.
And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth:
And there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake." Rev. 8:3-5.
Our prayers move in unison with the Hand of God, for so He has ordained.

WORSHIP HIM
Prayer ( praise) is the highest form of worship, and we are strongly commanded to worship God in the very last days:
"And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to
preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice,
Fear God, and give glory to Him;
For the hour of His judgement is come:
And WORSHIP Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." Rev. 14: 6,7

ANYWHERE WE WANDER, ANYWHERE WE ROAM
Whether we're at home, at school, at work or anywhere, we are only a 'step-ladder' away from ascending to the throne of God in prayer.
Jacob's ladder, Genesis 28:11-22.
It was here, at the House of God ("Bethel") that God told Jacob:"I am with thee and will keep thee in all the places whither thou goest…I will not leave thee".
We are to be "instant in prayer" in all circumstances Romans 12:12, in all places and "in season and out of season" 2 Timothy 4:2 .

The God who answers prayer feeds us all the days of our life Gen.48:15, even in times of famine.
Psalms 33:19 and Psalm 37:19
Our answering God takes into account our alms, freely given, as we pray Acts 10: 2, 4+ 31 .
In response to prayer, God casts governments into the ash-heap of history
"Mountain (government), be thou removed" Mark 11:23
"The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ;
and He shall reign forever and ever." Rev. 11:15 and Daniel 2: 34, 35 and 44,45 ; Psalm 2; Isaiah 41:15, 16 ; Rev. 20:4

CLOSER THAN A BROTHER
But best of all, prayer brings us into fellowship with God--the Highest Being of the Universe.
It is the greatest privilege of mankind.
It matters not if we are on our knees, or sitting down, or lying flat on our backs, as long as our heart is kneeling, says J. Vernon McGee. Let's just take TIME with the One who gave us 70 years (more or less) to enjoy His Presence, and His counsels, during this unique time on earth.

Prayer--let's not start a day without it…..
"My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD;
In the morning will I direct my prayer unto Thee,
and will look up." Psalm 5:3

Song: Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
http://www.cyberhymnal.org/htm/t/u/turnyour.htm


Our Father,       In Song http://hopetotheend.com/Our%20Father.mp3
which art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth, as it is in Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our DEBTS, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from Evil:
For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
Matthew 6:9--13

LINKS:
 
WHISPER "JESUS"
  hopetotheend.com/Jesus.html

Problems with the Prayer of Jabez...Berit Kjos
http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/Jabez.htm

DAILY PRAYER ...... David Campbell

"God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you......
1 Samuel 12:23

"Pray without ceasing"..... 1 Thessalonians 5:17 hopetotheend.com/praydc.html

Songs/Poems on Prayer
http://www.cyberhymnal.org/top/prayer.htm
 
The Priority of Prayer....Bob Bonner
http://www.ldolphin.org/prayoption.html

Sweet Hour of Prayer...Mary Adams

" When we think of prayer, we often see it as an interruption of daily activity, a sacrifice of precious time. I wonder.
 Have you a struggle with prayer?  Perhaps you, (like I once did) have not considered that God is a Spirit... that He is an unseen presence, and because of that we often think He is not around.  We might prefer a more tangible being, one who we can see face to face.  We want to hear an instant response, observe a smile or a frown. "
http://www.fivedoves.com    Scroll to Latter day letters


GOD WILL DO THE REST
I asked the Lord to bless you
As I prayed for you today
To guide you and protect you
As you go along your way

His love is always with you
His promises are true
And when we give Him all our cares
You know He will see us through

So when the road you're traveling on
Seems difficult at best
Just remember I'm here praying
And GOD WILL DO THE REST.

Author unknown
Sent in by Al Zimmerman


****

Was It You Who Prayed ?
Did you think of me this morning
As you breathed a word of prayer?
Did you ask for strength to help me
All my heavy burden bear?
Did you speak of faith and courage
For the trials I must meet?
Did you ask that God might keep me
As you bowed at Jesus' feet?

Someone prayed and faith grew stronger
As I bent beneath my load.
Someone prayed--the way grew brighter
And I walked all unafraid,
In my heart a song of gladness--
Tell me: Was it YOU who prayed?


Author unknown

***
The Power of Prayer
http://hope-of-israel.org/ernprayr.htm


***
They Also Serve
(Zechariah 4:10; Luke 16:10;Matthew 10:42)
 
referring to Milton "On His Blindness"
Invisible ones,
Standing, waiting cheerfully,
far from the front lines,
doing what they can
from where they stand.

They are faithful in the least,
not despising small things,
though they be forgotten, overlooked
and underappreciated.

Men's eyes are elsewhere
but the invisible ones
are seen by HIm and
marked for reward.

There is a crown laid up for those
who have no strength to run,
but stand and wait
and pray.

They are the unseen knees and shoulders
for the visible ones
fighting on the front lines.
 
lori fiechter 2-07-05

Pray-Waiting  
I could have prayed.
I had a minute there,
waiting for the page to download;
Two minutes waiting at a red light;
four minutes in the checkout lane.
And countless minutes doing countless auto-pilot tasks
where I just let my mind wander or worry.
I could have prayed. I had the time.  

lori fiechter
2-08-95
 Lori has an excellent website filled with her poems, essays and quotes.
Enjoy yourself at "Glow in the Dark Christians"
http://www.onlyinternet.net/lori/
http://www.parlorcity.com/lori


Prayer by David Campbell

***
FASTING FROM SELF----FEASTING ON JESUS

hopetotheend.com/fasting.html


Salvation