Lord, Teach Me to Pray!

LORD, TEACH US TO PRAY!

Our daily sessions of prayer should include worshiping Him, thanking Him, rehearsing before Him our needs, and asking to know His desires and His plans and His assignments for us. After all, He knows all things: He knows OUR needs! We need to know more and more about HIS desires!

Sometimes I have asked Him HOW to express my family’s needs—to be appropriately stated from His perspective. One need has involved housing: knowing we needed to move, but not knowing WHERE. We’ve moved 13 times in our married life and itinerant ministry base locations…

One time I was led to ask Him this way: “Lord, if you have another place for us to live, please BRING THE HOUSE TO US!”  Within a few days, a phone call “out of the blue” from a contractor began a remarkable chain of events, and a few months later we bought our first brand new house. The details are so amazing that I must include that complete story in a book in progress….

Years later it was time to move again, and this time I was led to ask, “Lord, I don’t even know what part of the country is Your will where we may relocate. Or why. So Lord, please PUT MY NAME on the house You have for us, and as You identify it, we will pursue each step of the move.”  Soon, I received a phone call from a dear friend who announced that he was cutting back on his farming due to economic difficulties. The house where his foreman and family had lived was to be sold and occupied. He said, “I told the agent that if my friend Phil Freeman wants that house, I will continue to supply the water from my well. But if anyone else buys it, they must dig their own well.”

I asked him, “Are you telling me that there is a file on that property with a notation of MY NAME on it?” He responded, “That’s EXACTLY what I’m telling you!” We pursued that project, and were enabled to buy the property! Every detail fell into place just like the other move!

When you don’t know WHAT TO ASK, or WHY, or what QUESTIONS to put into words, simply ask Him to help you phrase your request in His terms. “Lord, TEACH ME how to pray, what to say!” The results will be wonderful, the credit and glory will all go to Him, and you will have a TESTIMONY like many we have collected for our book!

“For we don’t even know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.” Romans 8:26

“May the words of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart be pleasing to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.” Psalm 19:14

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Seek Him “early” and Trust Him Forever!

When the Psalmist King David was running from his own rebellious son Absalom “in the wilderness,” he crafted this one. Psalm 63.

O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You In a dry and thirsty land Where there is no water.
2 So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory.
3 ¶ Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips shall praise You.
4 Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.
5 My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.
6 When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches.
7 ¶ Because You have been my help, Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
8 My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me.

Do you feel the sense of ownership and intimacy in David here? This man KNEW GOD!! When you know God and can recite His character qualities better than your light bill, the history of that nasty neighbor, and what the doctor said last Thursday about the lab reports—— you will feel better about all of that stuff!

We need to get Heaven’s viewpoint. Ephesians 2:6 says God has a front-row seat for believers “in heavenly places”—the trick is to tune in to the spiritual realm and enjoy His Presence! Even if we don’t “see” much, we can be assured of His love and His goodness. Nothing can separate us from His love!

If you seek Him early, you’re more likely to trust Him throughout the day.

Who do you trust?

A calligraphy hangs over our bed, and has for years. Made for us by a dear friend, this writing from King David is a constant reminder in Psalm 62. I had always thought it beautiful, but onFeatured imagee day I took a closer look. The word “only” stood out to me, as the word is used twice there. “My soul, wait thou ONLY upon God, for my expectation is from Him. He ONLY is my rock… I shall not be moved.”

I researched Psalm 62, discovering it is called the “only-Psalm.” David often encountered extremely challenging obstacles, and was forced to trust God when nothing else offered a remedy. He had learned on those quiet hillsides with the sheep, to focus on God, on the heavens, on the Invisible.

Hebrews 11:6 applies here: “without faith it is impossible to please God…”  Have you ever been backed against the wall with no answers? THAT’S a perfect opportunity to connect with your Invisible Source—your Creator! The great English preacher Charles Spurgeon commented: “They trust not God at all who trust Him not alone.”

The word only, which translates a little Hebrew particle, occurs six times in Psalm 62: four in reference to God (62:1, 2, 5, 6; also in 4, 9). Each time, in Hebrew, it begins the sentence for emphasis. The word itself conveys emphasis and may be translated in different ways, depending on the context, (only, alone, surely, certainly) but the most authoritative Hebrew lexicon and most modern translations translate it in Psalm 62 as “only” or “alone.” Thus by repetition, David hammers home the concept that we will enjoy God’s peace in the midst of life’s most threatening moments when God only—God alone—is our salvation and refuge.

George Müller, in “A Narrative of some of the Lord’s Dealings,” (1856), started each day on his knees, alone with God, trusting Him alone for resources to care for the thousands of orphans in his trust. He wrote these words: “When at last help comes, after many seasons of prayer it may be, and after much exercise of faith and patience it may be, how sweet it is, and what a present recompense does the soul at once receive for trusting in God, and waiting patiently for his deliverance!  Dear Christian reader, if you have never walked in this path of obedience before, do so now, and you will then know experimentally the sweetness of the joy which results from it!”

So… who do YOU trust?

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