Pg 25…..Discovering our need of God
Prayer = Faith + Helplessness
Listen, my friend! Your helplessness is your best prayer. It calls from your heart to the heart of God with greater effect than all your uttered pleas. He hears it from the very moment that you are seized with helplessness, and He becomes actively engaged at once in hearing and answering the prayer of your helplessness.”
“Nothing means so much to our daily prayer life as to pray in the name of Jesus. If we fail to do this, our prayer life will either die from discouragement and despair or become simply a duty which we feel we must perform.”
“ Notice carefully every word here. It is not our prayer which draws Jesus into our hearts. Nor is it our prayer which moves Jesus to come in to us. All He needs is access. He enters in of His own accord, because He desires to come in. To pray is nothing more involved than to let Jesus into our needs, and permitting Him to exercise His own power in dealing with them. And that requires no strength. It is only a question of our wills. Will we give Jesus access to our needs?
Helplessness drives us to prayer. It humbles us. It carries us from wanting to “be like God” to wanting to “be with God.” Ultimately it opens the door to the Holy Spirit’s power.
If we are not helpless it shows that we are expecting from God only what we could accomplish in our own strength, or unaware of the true nature of the difficulties that surround us. If we are without faith we will dream without action, wait without preparation, and live without anticipation. We will not persevere in the fight for supernatural breakthroughs and or beseech for a true outpouring of the power of God.
Truly, humility is our greatest friend. It increases our hunger for God’s word and opens our hearts to his Spirit. It leads to intimacy with God, who knows the proud from afar, but dwells with him “who is of a contrite and lowly spirit” (Isa. 57:15). It imparts the aroma of Christ to all whom we encounter. It is a sign of greatness in the kingdom of God (Luke 22:24–27).
Developing the identity, attitude, and conduct of a humble servant does not happen over night. It is rather like peeling an onion: you cut away one layer only to find another beneath it. But it does happen. As we forsake pride and seek to humble ourselves by daily deliberate choices in dependence on the Holy Spirit, humility grows in our souls. Fenelon said it well, “Humility is not a grace that can be acquired in a few months: it is the work of a lifetime.” And it is a grace that is precious in the sight of God, who in due course will exalt all who embrace it.
C.S. Lewis describes humility not as thinking less of ourselves, but as thinking of ourselves less. With that definition in mind, the Bible has much to say about seeing ourselves in proper perspective. Holding the biblical perspective humbles us.
God has promised to give grace to the humble, while He opposes the proud (Proverbs 3:34; 1 Peter 5:5). Therefore, we must confess and put away pride. If we exalt ourselves, we place ourselves in opposition to God who will, in His grace and for our own good, humble us. But if we humble ourselves, God gives us more grace and exalts us (Luke 14:11). Along with Jesus, Paul is also to be our example of humility. In spite of the great gifts and understanding he had received, Paul saw himself as the “least of the apostles” and the “chief of sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:9). Like Paul, the truly humble will glory in the grace of God and in the cross, not in self-righteousness (Philippians 3:3-9). https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-humility.html
Pg 25-27 “ …we are to seek God in prayer at every point of our fears / casting our anxieties on the Lord”.
When we have problems and worries, we often forget to pray about them. Then, when we do pray, we may think that the only help that God can give is to grant the request as we have presented it and change the situation. God may very well do that. He has the power to change any situation, but He will not be limited to that. God does not promise to change every situation to our liking. What He does promise to do is give us peace during any situation. In other words, God may or may not change the circumstance, but He will change our disposition toward it so that it does not cause us inner turmoil.
Practically speaking, Philippians 4:6 gives us a model for the kind of prayer we need to pray when we are anxious or worried. First, we reject worry: do not be anxious about anything. Then, we simply ask God for what we need: in every situation, by prayer and petition, present your requests to God. And we thank Him for all that He has already done: with thanksgiving. Finally, we rest, knowing that He loves us and will work things out for our good and His glory. God’s peace is then ours.
Questions for this Chapter
Psalm 34:4 “I sought the Lord and He answered me and delivered me from all my fears.”
- How do you handle your fears, anxieties, helplessness ?
- In your own words, restate the equation : Prayer = Faith + helplessness. How do you define helplessness?
- Pg 26 “Every time you are tempted to be fearful, view it as a prompting of the Lord to pray”. Discuss the three steps process of coming to God, what each step looks like.
- Pg 27 “ His goal is to train His people to trust Him with the most precious thing of their lives “ Abraham’s was Isaac…..what is your “ Isaac” ?