Preparing For Prayer

Preparing For Prayer
January 9, 2015 Joel Grantham

Do you struggle with having a consistent and successful prayer life?  God does not want you to fail in prayer.  In this month’s partner letter I am going to give you 7 powerful keys to having a successful prayer life.  These are the same keys that transformed my prayer life as a young teenager, helping me to experience the depths of God’s glory in prayer.  I have also included in this packet an audio teaching called, “Preparing for Prayer”.  I believe that you will find this teaching to be a great help as you go deeper with God in your private prayer life.

Key #1  ALLOW THE HOLY SPIRIT TO QUICKEN YOUR HEART

In John 6:63 Jesus declared, “It is the Spirit that quickeneth.”  Now compare that verse with Psalm 80:18 and we learn a powerful truth about prayer.  Here the psalmist writes, “Quicken us, and we will call upon Thy name.” 

True prayer must be birthed by the Holy Spirit.  We cannot pray properly in our own strength and understanding.  In Ephesians 6:18 the Apostle Paul admonishes us, “Praying always, with all prayer IN THE SPIRIT…”  Praying in the Spirit is more than just praying in other tongues.  It means to let the Holy Spirit guide and empower your prayer life.

Before I begin in prayer, I always lift my hands and ask the wonderful Person of the Holy Spirit to help me pray.  Why don’t you do that right now?  Just lift up your hands and say, “Precious Holy Spirit, please come and help me to pray today.  Help me to worship Jesus and to experience His Presence.  I cannot pray on my own.  I need your help.  Please quicken me so that I can call upon the Lord.  Amen.”

Key #2  PREPARE YOUR HEART WITH GOD’S WORD

Job 11:13 reveals another life-changing truth about prayer when it says, “If thou prepare thine heart, and stretch out thine hands toward Him.”  To stretch out thine hands towards God means to pray because 1Timothy 2:8 says, “I will therefore that men should PRAY everywhere, LIFTING UP HOLY HANDS.”

Here in Job we learn that before we can stretch out our hands to God in prayer, we must first prepare our heart.  We prepare our heart with the Word of God.  Before you can go and seek God through prayer, the word of God must be alive inside of you.  In John 15:7 Jesus said, “If ye abide in Me, and MY WORDS ABIDE IN YOU, ye shall ask what you will (prayer), and it shall be done unto you.” 

I like to spend time reading God’s Word before I pray.  It’s while I am reading God’s Word that my heart begins to hunger for His Presence.  I have found that the Psalms are really good at preparing your heart to seek God through prayer.

KEY #3  APPROACH GOD THROUGH THE BLOOD OF JESUS

It is only through the blood of Jesus that we have access to God’s Presence.  Hebrews 10:19 declares, “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.”  The word translated “boldness” in this verse actually means “access” in the original Greek.  None of us can approach God through our own good works or self righteousness.

No one can enter God’s Presence if they have a guilty conscience.  In 1 John 3:21 & 22, it tells us that if our heart condemns us, then we cannot pray with confidence.  But Hebrews 9:14 tells us that the blood of Jesus not only has the power to forgive our sins, it also has the power to “purge our conscience”.  Each day before I pray, I apply the blood of Jesus to my life.  I encourage you to do the same.

KEY #4  YOU MUST PRAY ALONE

In Ephesians 6:18, the Scripture reveals there are several different kinds of prayer.  Yes, you can pray while on your way to work or while mowing the lawn or washing the dishes.  But the kind of prayer that God requires, the kind of prayer that causes you to enter into the Holy of Holies, must be done in private! You cannot seek God’s face properly while distracted by any other thing.  God deserves, and yes, God demands our undivided attention!

In Matthew 6:6 Jesus talks about this kind of prayer when He says, “When thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.”  The secret place of God’s Presence is found in secret.

KEY #5  PRAY DAILY

In order for your prayer life to be successful, it must become a daily practice.  Jesus taught us to pray daily when He gave us the model that we call the Lord’s Prayer saying, “Give us this day our daily bread.”  Each day you miss makes it that much harder to seek God the next day.  Missing a day causes you to lose the momentum that you have gained.

KEY #6  ALWAYS BEGIN WITH WORSHIP

Successful prayer requires the right atmosphere.  God’s Presence cannot abide in the wrong atmosphere.  Worship builds a habitation for God’s Presence to dwell in (see Psalm 22:3).  The scriptures teach us that we must always begin with worship when entering the Presence of the Lord.  Psalm 100:2 declares, “Let us come before His Presence with singing.”

Discovering the power of worship to bring me into the Presence of God has been one of the most powerful keys to my own personal prayer life.  Having the right music to help set the atmosphere has proven to be extremely important for me.

This month I am pleased to make available to you some of the very same anointed instrumental worship that I have been using in my own private prayer life for the past 23 years!  The music ministry of Bruce Hughes and Sheryl Palmquist has touched millions as the Holy Spirit’s Presence literally rides upon the wings of every note!  I highly recommend that you get these CD’s to help you pray!  They are available through our ministry for only $15 each.  .

KEY #7  WAIT IN SILENCE IN GOD’S PRESENCE

Isaiah 40:31 says, “They that WAIT UPON THE LORD shall renew their strength.”  As you study the scriptures you will find that waiting upon the Lord is more than prayer.  Waiting upon the Lord is something that we do while in prayer.  In other words, it is impossible to wait upon the Lord unless you pray, but just because you prayed does not mean that you have waited upon the Lord.

Waiting upon the Lord means to be silent in His Presence.  This is that place that you come to in prayer, after you have worshiped and made your requests, where you sit quietly and still in His manifest Presence allowing Him to fill you.  This is the most glorious experience one can have with God!

I encourage you to study the following scriptures to discover the true meaning of waiting upon the Lord.

  • Isaiah 40:31 & Isaiah 41:1
  • Psalm 37:3- The word translated “rest” literally means “Be silent” in the Hebrew.
  • Zephaniah 1:7
  • Zechariah 2:13

 

By Joel Grantham

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