Do your prayers seem powerful and effective? In of this series, I shared how many people do not feel their prayers are effective because they either do not think they can change God’s mind, or they are simply losing hope.
In part two of this series, we will explore two more reasons our prayers may not be as effective or powerful as we would hope.
- Sin is blocking the power in my prayers.
James 5:16, “Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”
Christ has made it possible for us to go directly to God in prayer. His righteousness is our righteousness when we place our faith in Him and His death on the cross for us.
Confessing our sins also has an important place in our prayer life. If we have sinned against an individual, we must ask him or her for forgiveness. If our sin is a private struggle, we must keep short accounts with God.
Disobedience and unrighteousness rip the power out of our prayers. When we harbor sin, such as greed, pride, hate, lust, etc., our prayers will not be powerful nor effective. We need to follow James’ advice — confess to others if needed and especially to God.
2. My prayers are not powerful because I am too busy to pray.
I once heard a pastor say, “Too many of us, in our prayers, are like little kids’ doorbell ditching (where they ring someone’s doorbell and then run away before the person answers). We don’t stay in prayer long enough to meet with God.”
He went on to say, “Some of you are really busy. But you are not too busy to stop for gas when your car is on empty. And if you are too busy to stop for gas, eventually your car will stop for you. It will stop running. The more you drive, the more often you have to stop for gas; the busier you are, the more prayer you need. If you are too busy to pray, you are too busy to have supernatural power in your life. What are you in such a hurry to go do that’s more important than meeting with God?”
If you are like me, this one hits the bullseye. I find encouragement to stay in prayer when I start with these scriptures in mind.
Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”
Psalm 55:17 “Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and he hears my voice.”
Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”
So today, search your heart, is there any sin blocking your prayers? Confess to the Lord, ask Him to take His rightful place on the throne of your life. Second, push pause on the business and meet with God. I like to think of my prayers being the tracks of a railroad. Each prayer I pray is another track along the route to the answer to my prayers. But if the tracks are corroded with sin or I am too busy to lay the tracks, my prayers seem blocked. I certainly do not want that! So, I confess my sins, and in prayer, lay the tracks so my answer will come in God’s perfect timing!