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 On Praying

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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:36 am

Wanted to get your take on praying. Over the years my prayers have gone from a sort of repetitious thing to just praying for someone's situation once, knowing that God has a good memory.

I realize the Word speaks of "praying always" and there's even some conjecture over the illustration of the woman coming before the king and badgering him to answer her request.  

Like I said, I personally think God has a good memory and doesn't need to be reminded of a person's need for healing or finances or whatever.

But then again, is prayer partially for US as well... in that the more we pray for someone, the more WE gain compassion and love for that person ?  I kinda don't really know, so I wanted to post my thoughts here and see what you fine folks have to say   Very Happy
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Through The Dark Radio

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 11:34 am

I think that prayer is 100% for us.  What we petition for isn't going to change God's actions.  God will answer according to His perfect will.  Reminds me of the Tourniquet song "The Hand Trembler":

Do you have the faith to let God be God - that is the question.
Not a question of outcome but a question of trust
For He is truly God and we are but dust.
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Staybrite

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:08 pm

My prayer life stinks (I'm really bad at it).  But just because the bible indicates that we are to "pray without ceasing", I don't think that means we are to pray for the same thing over and over again.  I have known people who keep prayer journals to remind them of what to pray for, but I don't think I could do that.  When I hear that someone needs prayer I stop what I am doing and immediately pray from them.  I will continue to pray for them when they come to mind, but often they don't....so that initial prayer is all they often get from me.  Which is much better than in the past when I would promise to prayer for someone (fully expecting to do it later) then totally forgetting about it and forgetting to pray for them at all.

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rockerVu2

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:17 pm

I keep praying.
Sometimes a bit more than an other time.
But I pray.
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Samson

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 5:45 pm

I think there's a difference between praying repetitively just for show (which Jesus talked about in Matthew 6) as opposed to repetitive prayer that is coming from the heart.

For the latter, I would consider the parable of the persistent widow spoken of in Luke 18:1-8, and mentioned in the OP.
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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Mon Nov 07, 2016 9:08 pm

For me, repetitive prayer happens when I am most concerned with something.  Right now, I am praying the same thing often with things at my church up in the air.  However, I am really earnest with what I am praying and seeking for.

I am far less repetitive when it is something that may need prayer but may not be what my heart really wants to talk to the Father about.

Maybe it is just me, but that tends to be my pattern.

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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Tue Nov 08, 2016 11:12 pm

I've found that as I grow decrepit... er, I mean, "older", I become more and more like my Dad. I am much less verbally social, which has carried over to all my close relationships, including my own wife and God. I just don't feel the need to talk as much anymore, don't really have much to say these days. 
¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Wed Nov 09, 2016 7:20 am

Guilty/Forgiven wrote:
I've found that as I grow decrepit... er, I mean, "older", I become more and more like my Dad. I am much less verbally social, which has carried over to all my close relationships, including my own wife and God. I just don't feel the need to talk as much anymore, don't really have much to say these days. 
¯\_(ツ)_/¯


As I revel in my decreptitude, I am still just as vocal as ever.  I have learned, for the most part, when to keep my mouth shut.  It is a gift.  It isn't as much fun, but it does help to reduce drama in my life.  I have also learned that, while I may be wiser when I do or don't speak, some folks still stir up drama regardless.

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ishmael81

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Wed Nov 09, 2016 9:40 am

So I think if we want to talk about prayer, we need to break it down.

First, there's different kinds of prayer. I always use PRAY to remember the types:
P - Praise
R - Repentance
A - Asking for others (also called intercession)
Y - Yourself (also called petition)

Now, of course you can use all these at one time.

And of course, the Bible has lots to say about prayer. Here's a few I think are important.

Philippians 4:6-7
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

You'll notice this says to use different types of prayer to ask God for what you want. And the result? Not that you're guaranteed to get what you want but that God's peace will guard your heart and mind.

John 15:7
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Now, I don't hide that I believe in open futurism but I don't think God is a magic fairy. We can ask whatever we wish and He will do it but only if we abide in Him. I once had a guy tell me that this verse made it okay to divorce his wife. But if God's word abides in you, you won't want to divorce your wife.

I like the ESV version of Matthew 6:7 - which someone else mentioned. It says it more clearly, I think:

And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words.

It's not so much about being repetitive as what the words mean when you pray. Are you sincere? Are you trying to trust that God will help the situation?

I could go on and on but ultimately, I think prayer is more about our relationship with God than "getting what we want." I believe this based on Nehemiah's prayer in Nehemiah 1.

"As soon as I heard these words I sat down and wept and mourned for days, and I continued fasting and praying before the God of heaven. And I said, “O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, let your ear be attentive and your eyes open, to hear the prayer of your servant that I now pray before you day and night for the people of Israel your servants, confessing the sins of the people of Israel, which we have sinned against you. Even I and my father's house have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against you and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, and the rules that you commanded your servant Moses. Remember the word that you commanded your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples, but if you return to me and keep my commandments and do them, though your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there I will gather them and bring them to the place that I have chosen, to make my name dwell there.’ 10 They are your servants and your people, whom you have redeemed by your great power and by your strong hand. 11 O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of your servant, and to the prayer of your servants who delight to fear your name, and give success to your servant today, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.”

He doesn't ask for stuff, he tells God how much the people have messed up and asked God to have mercy on them.
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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Wed Nov 09, 2016 5:24 pm

Quote :
John 15:7
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Now, I don't hide that I believe in open futurism but I don't think God is a magic fairy. We can ask whatever we wish and He will do it but only if we abide in Him. I once had a guy tell me that this verse made it okay to divorce his wife. But if God's word abides in you, you won't want to divorce your wife.

I agree, but I wanted to add a little different thought if you will allow.

I have always looked at this verse as meaning that if we are allowing Christ's words to truly abide in us, we will get what we want.  If His words truly abide in us, we will want what He wants.  We will desire to see God, to know Him, to trust Him, to see His kingdom grow, to see with God's eyes.  Our desires and dreams become infiltrated with His if Jesus' words abide in us.  Then, when we pray, our hearts are so connected with His that we receive what we pray for--God's true will in our lives and on earth!

I think you will get what I am saying, ishmael.

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ishmael81

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Thu Nov 10, 2016 9:17 am

alldatndensum wrote:
Quote :
John 15:7
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Now, I don't hide that I believe in open futurism but I don't think God is a magic fairy. We can ask whatever we wish and He will do it but only if we abide in Him. I once had a guy tell me that this verse made it okay to divorce his wife. But if God's word abides in you, you won't want to divorce your wife.

I agree, but I wanted to add a little different thought if you will allow.

I have always looked at this verse as meaning that if we are allowing Christ's words to truly abide in us, we will get what we want.  If His words truly abide in us, we will want what He wants.  We will desire to see God, to know Him, to trust Him, to see His kingdom grow, to see with God's eyes.  Our desires and dreams become infiltrated with His if Jesus' words abide in us.  Then, when we pray, our hearts are so connected with His that we receive what we pray for--God's true will in our lives and on earth!

I think you will get what I am saying, ishmael.

Honestly I think we're saying the same things. If we are abiding in Him, we'll ask for the things he already wants to give us. But if we aren't, that's when people justify anti-Jesus things.
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Driven

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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Thu Nov 10, 2016 12:50 pm

Some of my prayer is when a subject comes across my mind or to my attention, and I take some time then to pray about it, and then sporadically pray for that later as well. For instance, I often pray for my school and community, for my girlfriend, for the Native people of Canada, and especially that I would love God more and more.

Group prayer is also a very encouraging setting on many levels. There's more focus, I find.
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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: On Praying   Thu Nov 10, 2016 9:16 pm

ishmael81 wrote:
alldatndensum wrote:
Quote :
John 15:7
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Now, I don't hide that I believe in open futurism but I don't think God is a magic fairy. We can ask whatever we wish and He will do it but only if we abide in Him. I once had a guy tell me that this verse made it okay to divorce his wife. But if God's word abides in you, you won't want to divorce your wife.

I agree, but I wanted to add a little different thought if you will allow.

I have always looked at this verse as meaning that if we are allowing Christ's words to truly abide in us, we will get what we want.  If His words truly abide in us, we will want what He wants.  We will desire to see God, to know Him, to trust Him, to see His kingdom grow, to see with God's eyes.  Our desires and dreams become infiltrated with His if Jesus' words abide in us.  Then, when we pray, our hearts are so connected with His that we receive what we pray for--God's true will in our lives and on earth!

I think you will get what I am saying, ishmael.

Honestly I think we're saying the same things. If we are abiding in Him, we'll ask for the things he already wants to give us. But if we aren't, that's when people justify anti-Jesus things.


I was pretty sure we were on the same page there!

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