In my last post, I gave you 5 steps that will prepare you to stand in the gap.
- Get on your knees and tell God you are ready to get back on track, serving Him.
- Begin praying for your family first. Pray for your spouse, then your children.
- Teach your children how to pray and serve Jesus – before someone teaches them how to serve themselves.
- Conduct a spiritual house blessing.
- If you are not active in a church that preaches and teaches Biblical truth, find one that does and get active there.
Prayer is a two-way conversation with God. You have to listen just as much or more than talk. When you pray, do you really expect God to answer or do you just hope He will? How do you know He answers?
Years ago in Houston, I worked with an Indian lady. We had interesting conversations. As I headed out to lunch one day she stopped me to ask, “Jerry, do you pray to God?” Of course I do, daily. Then she hit me with a question I was not expecting. “How do you know that God answer your prayers?” I knew this was not going to be a short answer so I invited her to lunch.
I consider that chance encounter with my co-worker to be a divine appointment. She and I began having regular conversations about prayer. These led to a conversation about her asking Jesus to be her Lord and savior. I remember her asking me how to do that. She was struggling with the concept of verbalizing the feelings in her heart. I told her to write God a letter, just like she would write a letter to a friend. A few days later, she came to me asking where to mail the letter, then she gave it to me to read. Tis is what her letter said –
I have been a Hindu all my life and never understood what the Bible really says. I want to start being a Christian now.
She confirmed that she truly meant what she said in the letter, but insisted it to be mailed. I told her God already received the message and I would take the letter – consider it mailed.
We continued our conversations about God and Jesus over the next several weeks. Nimisha was considering a job change with a new company and was about to go on an interview. She wanted to know if it would be OK to ask God about the job change. I remember telling her to ask God to show her clearly what she needs to do about accepting or rejecting the offer. Before she left for the interview, we prayed together about this job change.
Before that day ended, she called me to say she prayed as she drove across Houston to the interview. She was bursting with excitement when she described what happened:
- She asked God to make the traffic easy – He did, traffic was light on the freeways.
- She asked God to take away her nervousness – He gave her a spirit of calmness.
- She asked God to tell her what to do about the job – He did, she accepted the new position.
When I saw her after she returned the next day, I asked her how she knew God answered her prayers. She said God spoke to her heart. The last time we prayed together was when she left for her new job.
I know I will see Nimisha in heaven some day.
Is anyone among you suffering? Then he must pray. Is anyone cheerful? He is to sing praises. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; 15 and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man (or woman) can accomplish much. (James 5:13-16, NIV)
Friends, I am not going to pretend to know all the answers on how to turn America around. What I do know is this – we have a choice. We can sit back complacently and do nothing, believing our vote does not count, our voice does not matter. Or we can take an active role in restoring America to its greatness. I do know that God hears our prayers and will honor our requests – but our heart must be healed first.
What condition is your heart? It is not possible to be a righteous person without Jesus. Perhaps you have left your first love. Self has pushed the Holy Spirit away (Revelation 2:2-7). Tell God that you are ready for the Holy Spirit to reside in your heart. Tell Him you are sorry for pushing Him aside.
Perhaps you have never invited Jesus into your life. God is not looking for perfect people, He is looking for people who are willing to be perfected by the Spirit. What Jesus did on the cross was done for all mankind – It was a perfect sacrifice by a perfect person to perfect some very imperfect people. (Hebrews 10:14, The Message). Are you ready to write that letter to God?
The choice is yours. Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.