Quote:Thank you for a great letter Mike, I feel your sincerity. I just want to clarify what I mean by enjoying prayer. I found that while I would be in deep intercession, there was no joy in that, yet there is that thought that what the Spirit is doing is good and therefore I enjoyed the fact that the Spirit was pleased to interceed thru me. It is that utter knowing that He is pleased to use me. It's that relief that He wants me to pray and seek His face.
compliments said: the very thing that I have always enjoyed doing.
Brother Paul, your letter brought me to tears, I too soooooooo need to hear that.
Praise the LORD.
| 2007/6/3 8:46|
Santa Clara, CA
| Re: simply|
Brethren! Some great things here...
There was something that happened in the kneeling--not of me kneeling as a trick of some sort, but of the Lord literally bringing me on my knees. I tried it again last night and it was so hard; it was impossible for me to be as broken before the Lord as before. This leads me to believe that He prepares and enables us for service like intercessory prayer
That is so vital an understanding and think it syncs up very well with what our Brother Daryl noted;
I would say not to be overly anxious about it and guilt ridden, but like an individual building a house that's going to take a year or so to complete, just patiently work at it, always keeping the finished product in the back of your mind. In that way you will cultivate a long range view and won't be discouraged by present failures that I'm sure the enemy of our souls constantly mocks you about with condemnation and failure and as is one of his sanre he likes to create in us a low self esteem build on the foundation of repeated failures. In that way our focus is generally on our selves more than on the present reality of Christ "with us", the Holy Spirit "in us", and the Father "for us". So today just simply invite Jesus to come along with you and watch and see what happens, as a friend who accompanies you don't forget He's there, and that will take practice.
Maybe it is that we are so fond of dictating outcomes or having some certain expectations met and become discouraged when they don't come along the lines we have previously crafted. And as you well stated the enemy of our souls loves to use this against us, guilting us into more and more ... it is a bit ironic to think on it for a bit. What is the point of listening to the powers that be stating how worthless we are! The retort ought to be, precisely why I am here! Maybe if we were just a little more sharp we could find a rejoicing in that. Seems to me a better tactic would be to whisper sweet words in our ears about what super saints we are ... well certainly enough of that to go around ...
2Co 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
But brother you also touched on something that came back to notice this morning,
In that way our focus is generally on our selves more than on the present reality of Christ "with us", the Holy Spirit "in us", and the Father "for us".
Coming back from the drift again took a great deal of notice about this very thing. That erosion begins to subtly undermine and draw ones self back to ... ones self! When in the midst and in the more dedicated ... continual day to day ... effort of sustained prayer, the self fades into the background in ... order, in 'importance'. Our needs are always going to be pressing us and be those things that the derivatives are drawn up and out of, but even the way the Lord put it is very succient;
Mat 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
Mat 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth [b]that ye have need of all these things.[/b]
It is not to dismiss them certainly but ...
... seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Mat 6:33
There you have it, [i]today[/i]. It is enough of it's own trouble to dwell too long on yesterdays failures and tomorrows unknown possibilities and\or problems. Hardly is it to forget, think that is it's own snare and we would learn nothing if it wasn't still present to draw from but it's the place of occupation it holds our attention level at. It must be able to be put down as fast as it is to be picked up or recalled to mind. The only thing that matters is the Lords will regardless, all our praying has to come to this moment of clarity.
Ah Brethren, it is remarkable the shared experience and my own loquacity is something that I woe about sometimes, rattling on and on here. But so be it, it is all worth it if something is picked up or drawn out of it all. Here is one I marvel at, Richard Baxter;
[i]Even after Mr. Baxter had delivered his very soul through preaching, he still felt that his work was but half done. He knew that the preaching of the Word must be accompanied by the personal and individual touch of a pastor. "He arranged that every family in his parish should come to his house, one by one...then he took each member apart and urgently, tenderly besought him to make an immediate decision for Christ. Seldom did a family leave Baxter's door without tears."
J. C. Ryle esteemed Baxter as one of the most successful pastors to ever live. He writes, "While some ministers were wrangling about the divine right of Episcopacy or Presbytery, or splitting hairs about reprobation and free-will, Baxter was always visiting from house to house and beseeching men for Christ's sake, to be reconciled to God... While others were entangling themselves in politics, and ' burying their dead' amidst the potsherds of the earth, Baxter was living a crucified life and daily preaching the Gospel." Because of Mr. Baxter's great success among his people he soon became a shepherd of shepherds. Addressing his fellow ministers, Baxter writes, "We must feel toward our people as a father toward his children; yea, the most tender love of a mother must not surpass ours. We must even travail in birth, till Christ be formed in them. They should see that we care for no outward thing, neither liberty, nor honor, nor life, in comparison to their salvation... When the people see that you truly love them, they will hear anything from you...Oh therefore, see that you feel a tender love for your people in your hearts, and let them perceive it in your speech and conduct. Let them see that you spend and are spent for their sakes."[/i]
He has been quoted much in these parts over some time and it amazes me how 'contemporary' he truly is, how he proves out the timelessness of so many things.
[i]His sermons were a combination of cutting and piercing words and a gentle and loving spirit. Baxter consistently spoke like one who had been face to face with Jesus. He drew others to Heaven through his preaching because he had touched Heaven through his praying.[/i]
With so much intake of all these saints it is easy to get the time frames mixed up and it dawned on me again that he lived and breathed and prayed in the mid 1600's. It just struck me differently today.
I am also thing back to our brother Paul's earlier comments about the ebb and flow, better to find that again ...
What you've shared is basically the on-going story of my life. A season of heated prayer and Bible study...then a cool down. Another season of consistent prayer and scripture devotion...and another cool down. Don't beat yourself up, and don't let the impulses of rejection swamp your mind. I'll be honest with you: when we allow ourselves to be swayed from the times of fervent devotion and intimacy with God, it's as if we fight an uphill battle to get back to where we were. The hardest thing is picking up where we left off, because our inadequacies and failures are all too near and vibrant and pulsating. We try to pray and suddenly our heads are assulted with disjointed thoughts and vivid memories of recent defeats.
Somehow I am trying to trick myself here and say two things at the same time. What I mean is the same battle Paul speaks of is ours I would imagine to a great extent and ... here is a verse that sometimes haunts me, make that two;
Eph 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
Jas 1:6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
The word is 'tossed' but it's companion is [i]wavering[/i]. How to defeat ... again for some emphasis;
when we allow ourselves to be swayed from the times of fervent devotion and intimacy with God,
I agree it is not to beat our selves up, but on the other hand it is! Guilt or conviction can be a good thing and I would rather not split hairs over the differences, just that it either can propel us forward to do something about it or we can sit in the ashes and gaze at the belly button over it, mourning our loses. What I did mean earlier about going out into the world without these times of dedicated prayer and for myself that is early hours in the morning and the abject failure is ... Pardon the usual longevity to get out the expression ...
Environment and atmosphere. These things have been much in the thoughts and in my particular circumstances. Recall having quite a bit of conversation with our brother Robert here many moons ago about this as it pertains to the working world. I am still very much up against it. The world is hostile to the things of God and it is not the overt sewer of sin that runs through everything as much as the hostility that is covered in all the [i]good[/i] things that are present. The brutality of it all is in the mixed up or the mixing up of things. It's the being caught up in it all that is the difficulty. The point of fact is that we are a peculiar people, you [i]feel[/i] it because you are not your own and you are in the midst of those who ... are their own. Maybe that is part of it. They do not have to be overtly immoral or anything of that, generally speaking most of those I work with are cordial, polite, earnest, trying to do their jobs. There are the difficult aspects of workplace politics, there is the gossip that is woeful and find I can be ... [i]swayed[/i] there is that word again, caught unaware it is so subtle sometimes. There is the difficulties of being belittled and patronized, passed over, criticized and of course there is just the honest problem of not being better ... organized and a bit more diligent in my own duties. Have come to see precisely why there was a placing of this fool into this construct, it is to primarily develop character and my I am finding out just how short I fall, how long it truly takes to develop this ... There is still this great disconnect between the prayer closet and the opening of that door at work. I haven't changed, it is not a chameleon effort ... but it is [i]their[/i] world, their atmosphere ... By and large God is not [i]there[/i]. He is not in their thoughts or considerations and here, this shaky vessel is carrying within him His Spirit into this atmosphere. This is what I mean by the refueling and times of ... time [i]spent[/i] in His Presence. To go out into this world on empty or relying on the reserves is ... suicidal for me, that is the failure I am speaking of, it is a spiritual failure. We are eternal creatures living and moving through the worlds concepts and environments, their 'cultures', [i]of the world[/i] and us, we being "in" it but not "of it". Maybe a great part of the whole matter is that it is has been trumped, the devil has been given his limited sphere of influence and 'dominion' over it, but it is Gods world, it is His creation and maybe underneath it all I am just a bit ticked off about that! And just as well that the inhabitants have by and large been lulled to sleep by the here and now, this glossy overtone that everything is set off in to the far distance as if it will never arrive, always for another day, eternity ... delayed. Like one giant 'rain out' scheduled for better weather. It is so ... mind-boggling the perception, delayed gratification practically non-existent but eternal matters delayed indefinitely!
It is just a tremendous fight, without words, internally and gutturally. That very quote looms large, worth repeating;
[i]All vital praying makes a drain on a man's vitality. True intercession is a sacrifice, a bleeding sacrifice.[/i]
~ J.H. Jowett
But I think what has started here is of such a tremendous importance. We have had other postings that started out well in this direction, [url=https://www.sermonindex.net/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=9715&forum=35]How many People struggle with prayer , Prayer 101[/url] and certainly a great deal of redundancy between these two. But we ought to encourage each other more and more especially as the days seem to be growing darker to be much in prayer. To just read of these past saints and the mighty things done by prayer alone .. it goes back to the other thread, "Is prayer the answer?" Oh it is!
Will leave off this ramble with a few more quotes, but pray on saints, pray!
Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers.
~ J. Sidlow Baxter
Worship and intercession must go together, the one is impossible without the other. Intercession means that we rouse ourselves up to get the mind of Christ about the one for whom we pray.
~ Oswald Chambers
The greatest thing anyone can do for God and man is pray. It is not the only thing; but it is the chief thing. The great people of the earth today are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer; nor those who say they believe in prayer; nor yet those who can explain about prayer; but I mean those people who take time to pray.
~ S.D. Gordon
The prayer power has never been tried to its full capacity...if we want to see might wonders of divine power and grace wrought in the place of weakness, failure and disappointment, let us answer God's standing challenge, "Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and might things which thou knowest not.
~ J. Hudson Taylor
Courtesy of; [url=http://retirementwithapurpose.com/quotes/quotesprayer.html]Great Quotes on PRAYER[/url]
[i]Revival[/i] ... Has anyone come to the conclusion that we must have, [i]must[/i] plead for the Lord to come and disturb the atmosphere with [i]His[/i] environment?
History is silent about revivals that did not begin with prayer.
~ Edwin Orr
I just want to clarify what I mean by enjoying prayer. I found that while I would be in deep intercession, there was no joy in that, yet there is that thought that what the Spirit is doing is good and therefore I enjoyed the fact that the Spirit was pleased to interceed thru me. It is that utter knowing that He is pleased to use me. It's that relief that He wants me to pray and seek His face.
Indeed brother attempted to quantify that by way of 'acknowledgment', like you own definition far better! Well said!
| 2007/6/3 10:14||Profile|
This day again I woke up dry and dead inside.
It took all day to get my equilibrium back.
And yes, this happens periodically...without pattern, but so noticably!
I don't care if I'm unhappy, but I hate my spiritual balance being wrested from me, for in peace and joy is my safety.
And this is a settled feeling, not an emotion, so I get your 'enjoyment' very well.
I hate to say it, but it will happen again.
I do not ever know the cause, I only know that God teaches me with it, using all things to my good, as usual.
But I hate it.
I'll be praying for you to be in perfect peace as you pray, nothing missing, nothing broken, that you may be a tool for the Lord.
| 2007/6/4 5:00||Profile|
Today is the start of a great day. It started off with prayer, and it was a sweet one at that. I want to share with you;
Job 33:27 He looketh upon men, and if any say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not;28[then] He will deliver his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light.
The New Testament equivalent is:
Quote:These verses were sticking to me in prayer and I just wanted you to know that I am VERY grateful for your prayers. I feel the presense of God in my heart and I still feel the effects of this mornings prayer time, my time with Him must be the mornings.
Ephesians 5:14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.
And I will think of you all with affection as my online family. God Bless.
| 2007/6/4 8:03|
How are you doing today brother, I ahve been praying for you
in his love charlene
| 2007/6/6 2:11||Profile|