Dear Prayer Partner,
That wonderful, glorious season is here when we celebrate the virgin birth of our Lord. He was the word made flesh. He came to earth and walked among us. Have a blessed Christmas and remember to take time to enjoy the reason for the season. His name is Jesus!
- And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
- Rejoice in the Lord always (delight, gladden yourselves in Him): again I say rejoice!
God’s Word instructs us to rejoice always, and then this command is repeated with added emphasis: again, I say rejoice! Why was I finding it difficult to do so? Rejoice in my home, in the office, over my family? Rejoice at the grocery store? Rejoice when everything looked dismal, when my day wasn’t going as I had planned, when my family wasn’t cooperating? Again I say rejoice! Does God really expect us to rejoice at all times?
When my enthusiasm was high I could rejoice. I had learned to pray about everything, but when it seemed my prayers weren’t working my enthusiasm waned, and I didn’t have a desire to rejoice. But God is faithful, and one day during my prayer time, the light dawned. I realized that the necessary prayers were already prayed for these troublesome situations that concerned me and others, and I could rejoice because the Holy Spirit was working on God’s timetable and according to His will. It was time to move into God’s rest and rejoice that God through Jesus’ anointing had already done the work! Hallelujah for Calvary!
It was difficult for me to believe in the things that I couldn’t see or feel. Most of the time I waited for the manifestation (evidence) of God’s work before I considered my prayers really answered, even though Jesus said when you pray believe that you have received or that it has been granted to you. How could I rejoice when it didn’t seem that anything was changing? I believe Lord, help my unbelief. (Mark 9:24.)
What is a person to do? How can I rejoice when I still feel so desperate? I am reminded of John 6:28-29: What is the work we are to do? We are to believe in the one whom he has sent. Therefore, I realized that my main work on earth is to believe in the finished work of Jesus. I was healed, delivered, made whole and forgiven – the full work of salvation became mine when I first received Jesus as my Lord and Savior.
The work was done at Calvary. Jesus said it is finished. We are not the sick trying to get healed; we are the victorious standing for and maintaining our healing. Many times when we first begin to pray, the evidence seems to be against us. Nothing looks or feels already done. So, what convinces us?
First you choose to believe that God’s Word is His love letter to you, and you persuade yourself that He is faithful to watch over His word to perform it on your behalf and for His glory. Then, you begin with the prayer of faith and believe that God is moving by His Spirit. The what, where, when and how will develop into God’s intricate weaving of the perfect resolution. Even before the evidence of your first expectation, God is working on your behalf as you pray. He wants to fulfill the finished work in your personal life and in the lives of those for whom you pray. Learning to appropriate the things which He has so freely given is a lifetime process.
When you don’t know how to pray, ask the Holy Spirit to help you and show you how to pray. This is important because you do not want to pray your will, but the Father’s. This is so important in family situations because of your emotional involvement. You can rest assured that God is not going to violate someone else’s will just to bless you with the outcome you desire. Rejoice in Him, and allow the Holy Spirit to transform your desires according to the plan of God for your family members.
God will bring it all together for everyone when you believe His promises and spend time with Him. He will give you His wisdom and instructions. How can He do this? He may lead you to certain promises in the Bible. Or, direction may be indicated as situations and circumstances change. Other times He will lead you to an inspirational website, speak through a minister’s sermon, a Sunday School teacher or a friend, or even a stranger.
The Lord is your exceeding great Joy. His will for you is good and perfect. You can rejoice because of who He is, and rejoice because you are growing in the belief that God hears your prayers. You can be confident that God is working in the situation—lining up people and things so that His will is done.
When you intercede for your family and friends, it is not your job to judge or try to change them. It is your job to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and love them. Pray for everyone that all may be healed and restored to a spiritual tone of mind and heart. Jesus promised, If you adhere to my teaching, you will truly be my disciples’ you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. (John 8:32.)
I am asking the Father to search my heart and reveal His truth about me. Is what I think about me, what God thinks about me? Do I see others through the filter of my unmet needs, unhealed wounds, and unresolved issues? Father, when I pray for others, help me see them as You see them that I might always pray according to Your will, purpose and plan.
What a marvelous journey we are on. Growing in Grace, and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ! I encourage you to pray, Show me Your truth, my Father: first, about myself that I may always come before You with clean hands and a pure heart. Then show me how and help me pray for others so that You can truly accomplish Your will in the hearts of men and women. May Your will be done in earth even as it is in heaven. In the name of Jesus, I bind our minds to the mind of Christ and loose wrong perceptions and bad feelings toward others. I bind us to the will and purposes of God, and loose selfishness and self-centeredness from our minds and attitudes. Amen.
Doesn’t that take the pressure off? It’s not my will, but His. It sure does for me. I am not responsible to change others or their situations. My part is to pray for them with joy, to listen to Him, to follow His instructions and to REJOICE that God is able.
- Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of–infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. May he be given glory forever and ever through endless ages because of his master plan of salvation for the Church through Jesus Christ.
For several years Pat Horton was Prayer Coordinator here at Word Ministries. She remains a faithful personal prayer partner. Thank you, Pat, for your many years of effectual prayer.
Germaine Copeland is the author of the best selling book series, Prayers That Avail Much. She has written scriptural prayers for the family. Read your Bible, pray and attend church where you can soak up the love and faith of God. You will receive emotional healing, experience spiritual growth and become more intimately acquainted with your Heavenly Father, and your relationships will grow stronger.