Daily Devotional for Sunday October 21, 2012
When We Pray about an Issue and Nothing Happens
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, is it a sin to go under hypnosis?
ANSWER: There are MANY reasons a Christian should run from hypnosis. It is the Holy Spirit who gives us the power to control ourselves. Hypnosis involves a transfer of control away from ourselves. We are to yield ourselves to the power of the Holy Spirit, NOT to another human. Hypnosis involves an altered state of consciousness when we are told in the Bible to be self controlled. Lastly, the techniques used in hypnosis are shared by mystical, philosophical, and religious systems, including the occult. In short, stay away from it!
One of the greatest tests of our faith is when we pray about an issue and NOTHING happens. We pray some more, and still nothing happens. We pray until we simply can't pray any longer. Let me say up front, there are some schools of thought that praying for something more than once shows a lack of faith.
I disagree with that conclusion, since we have passages like today's scripture that show us persistent prayer is encouraged. There is no RIGHT formula for prayer. It is not magic or some sort of mystical formula.
GOD IS NOT OUR PERSONAL GENIE IN A BOTTLE WHO IS SIMPLY WAITING TO RESPOND TO OUR WISHES!!!
The fact is, prayer is simply a conversation we have with our heavenly Father. It is like talking to our best friend, which He is. When we have a close relationship with someone, we may ask them to do something for us and it is done. We might only ask once, and it gets done. There are some things, especially when it comes to husbands and wives, or children, that we have to ask 5, 10, 20, even 100 times to get it done. We have all been there I am sure.
So it is with our relationship with God. We may share a need with God, and almost immediately it is taken care of. However, there may be some issues we pray about over, and over, and over for a long period of time before it is taken care of.
But, there are also some issues that we pray about for long periods of time that are NEVER resolved. It is at these times that we must allow our faith to become real and trust God. While the Bible clearly tells us to ask God for the desires of our heart, and we SHOULD do that, we must always pray with the heart. Jesus did.
He said, "YET not my will, but thy will be done." Jesus understood that His life was totally surrendered to God. It was God's life to use as He saw fit. God's plans may not always be our plans. It is at those times we MUST set aside our desires for His. As we grow spiritually, we actually come to the place Jesus was, when we understand each day that our life belongs totally to God and our desires must be His desires. Hear this one more time.
OUR DESIRES MUST BECOME HIS DESIRES!
I love you and care about you so much. I will be praying for you today, praying that when you have to, you are like the widow and are not afraid to remind God over and over of the great needs that you have in your life. There is nothing wrong with reminding God.
I will also pray that you come to the place in your walk with the Lord where you can say, "Lord, not my will, but Thy will be done," that place where we trust God enough to not worry when He s "silent", but have a peace that what God wants is what we want. After all, God's plans are ALWAYS better than our plans. While our plans don't always work out the way we expect, God's plans ALWAYS work out perfectly.
The fact is, God is NEVER silent and NEVER ignoring our prayers. He is simply waiting for His perfect timing to show you the right plan to meet your needs!!!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,