Blog Postings

Alone with God


In our first meeting back after the summer, Bobby Mackay begins the new season by turning our focus to the Lord, and more specifically the time we spend alone with Him. Considering the parable of the Publican and the Pharisee, who prayed to the Lord in very different ways.

Bobby drew attention to the sinner's prayer in verse 13 of Luke 18. This is the critical starting point in any individual's relationship with God. If a person has never come to the Lord Jesus Christ in humility as a sinner, they will never be able to come to Him as Lord, Saviour and Friend.

In stark contrast, verse 11 features the prayer of the self-righteous. It is the prayer of one who feels they don't need God. The prayer of one who is coming to God for some sort of personal fulfillment, and not out of respect for who God is, and who they are before Him. We must remember who we are praying to. It is the God of heaven, the One who holds our very next breath in the palm of His hands. We must come in respect, reverence and humility. It is only then that we will experience the true benefit of prayer. The prayer of the Believer.

Prayer is a spiritual thing. It is the weapon, given of God, to fight against the powers of darkness in this earth. As we pray, we must be mindful of the words of Ephesians chapter 6, putting on the armour of God to spiritually clothe us in preparation for the challenges that face us as Christians in this world.

But what about the success of our prayers? So many suffer the frustration of unsuccessful praying. But what is it that makes a prayer successful? It is simply knwoing that our prayers are in the hand of Almighty God. We cannot let pride creep in, rushing into prayer, just squeezing it into our frantic schedules, making all of our demands and expecting God to work them all out for us. No, we must come in humility, giving freely of our time to Lord, and allowing Him to show us, in His time, the path that we should take.

Not only must we humble ourselves, we should also be wholehearted in our praying. We should pray with faith to believe, with all of our hearts, that God will answer our prayers, in His will. Of course, at times we feel weak, weak in spirit and in faith. However, the answer to our prayers does not depend on us, it depends on a God who never changes, whose power never wavers and whose promises never fail.

It is also imperative that we are coming to the Lord with 'clean hands and a pure heart'. We must guard against unconfessed sin in our lives. Sin that we know is affecting our walk with God. Not that we will ever be perfect, for none of us are, but how can we expect to receive answers from the Lord when we are not in close communion with Him. Let us first confess our sins to Him, before bringing our needs. It is with obedience that we should pray, acknowledging our weaknesses and failings before Him, and exalting God in our prayer and in our lives as a whole.

Spending time alone with God is vital. Calling on the Lord first thing in the morning, and coming to Him again before we lay our head down to sleep, is a pattern that every believer would benefit from. Prayer, however, is more than just the time we spend on our own with the Lord. It is also the time we spend supporting one another in our relationship with Him. Not simply praying for others, but also encouraging them to pray, bringing needs together before the Lord, and building one another up in our knowledge and understanding of God.

Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.
See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.
Rejoice evermore.
Pray without ceasing.
In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

1 Thessalonians 5:14-18