Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Prayer


Ladies I made an error in my post on He quiets me with His Love.
I said God did not hear the following prayer: Lord, don’t let me hurt or curse anybody. I am but one woman, one unappreciated woman. Pamela, better know as Sweatpea pointed out God hears every prayer and I agree with her. But is this true? I have heard many Christians-Preachers, Deacons say God does not hear some of our prayers; they bounce off the ceiling and never reach Him. I think now is the time for some deeper research and a great issue for discussion. So I’m asking us to start a discussion here and teach one another as we have done so well on Rachael’s site. Please read “He Quiets me with His Love,” and Sweetpea’s comments and mine to her than answer the follow questions in the comments section. Thanks

Do prayers bounce off the ceiling, never reaching God?
Does God hear prayers prayed out of His will?
Does God hear prayers utter from a heart of anger, or not reflective of Him?

16 comments:

Robin Lambright said...

You’ve asked a very interesting question, from my own personal experiences there are many times that I feel that God is not listening to my prayers. This feeling is very simply just that. It is a feeling. It is not a reality. God hears all the prayers that we lift up to him, however in our limited humanness we take His slow response or no response as evidence that He is not listening. I have bee praying for my son for over a decade, the majority of these prayers have gone unanswered, this is not because God is not listening to me, it is because my son is not listening to God, or to his parents. There have been times that in my deep despair and weakness I have lashed out in anger at God. I have to recognize several things about my lashing out at God. My son has many times lashed out at me with vicious words and hurled insults at me that so cut me to the very core, these hateful words wounded me, but they did not change the love I have for my son. I feel certain that God is the same only more so. When we come before him motivated out of anger, or we are praying outside of his will He has the heavenly discernment to know the difference.
God always knows best. If we are truly seeking to know Him better He will place scripture, he will place individuals or situations in our path that will become opportunities for spiritual growth. As you examine your unanswered prayers and the by produces of them we all have the opportunity to either learn from them or not.

Paula (SweetPea) said...

I agree with Robin in that God does hear ALL of our prayers. Now, He very well may hear different prayers in different lights. I do not believe He responds to unbelievers prayers unless it was of repentance and seeking Christ. I believe it says in His word that He has a deaf ear to unbelievers. But He does tell us in James 5:16b that "the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective."

I can understand, believe, and accept that God hears our different prayers in different prayers. That is, if we are praying for something unrighteous or maybe something selfish...like "I" really want that job or "I" really want that house or "I" really want that car....then He still hears us but rather He doesn't answer in the way WE want. As humans, we cannot always know what God's will is so I'm sure there are many things we could pray out of His will. We could be praying for a job that is out of His will and plan. It is only through continued prayer and reading His word that He will slowly change our prayers as He reveals His will to us. God does not infringe on our free will and free choice but His small still voice speaks to the ones earnestly seeking Him and eventually, in a sense He does change our will. That is He speaks to us and 'convinces' us of His ways, and thus our will is changed to align with His. Does that make sense? I know that is kind of off the subject.

I'm unsure of exactly what you mean by prayers of anger...anger toward Him or another? But, yes, He does. I was very angry at my beloved on Monday as I cleaned my house by myself for a showing. The feelings of abandonment came over me and the pain flooded me so to the point of cussing at my kitchen cabinets as I cleaned my kitchen. I instantly felt remorse and repentant. I knew it was wrong to be angry but that pain came flooding me as I rushed to accomplish so many things. So, I say this because that prayer was in the midst of being angry with my beloved. God understands our anger. There is such a thing as righteous anger and sinful anger. Both of which He understands. Of course, we must seek forgiveness for it also. Does He hear us if we curse at a slow poke driving in front of: yes, He hears us? Does He answer...I would GUESS that He would not move that person quickly out of our way because of our poor attitude. Now, if we plead with Him and He knows we are in dire need to make it to the hospital say for a dying loved one, will He answer us then more quickly. I believe so. In conclusion to my ever so long post, I do believe He hears all our prayers...He knows every thing as He's omniscient. However, He may choose to answer us according to the way we approach His throne. Maybe that is what you actually intended.

Also, I am NOT complaining but I notice you called me Pamela. It is so wierd because somone one a long time ago on one of my comments also called me Pamela.
Lovingly,
Paula

Paula (SweetPea) said...

In writing for my next blog I was searching the word godly on biblegateway.com.

I just "happen" to see this verse.
John 9:31 We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly man who does his will.

I believe I stated with a little hesitation that God does not listen to unbelievers. I thought I'd pass this along.

I guess this could also be believers who are living in continual sin and haven't repented of that yet.

GOD'S LADIE said...

I don't believe prayers bounce off the ceiling, never reaching GOD if the prayer is sincere and you believe that GOD will answer your prayers. Matthew 6:5-"And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily, I say unto you, They have their reward." Matthew 6:7-"But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking."
Matthew 21:22-"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive."

I beleive GOD does hear prayers prayed out of his will, however how and if he will answer them, is the question. We should always pray that GOD's will be done. Matthew 6:10-"Thy kingdome come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven."

I agree with the ladies above that GOD hears all prayers from HIS children. I am not sure that he hears the prayer that is uttered from a heart of anger and not reflective of him. For it says in HIS word in the following scriptures: Mark 11:25 & 26-"And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses." GOD wants us to come to him with a heart clear of anger and confusion. 1Timothy 2:8-"I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting." It is okay for us to be angry, but we must be careful not sin: Ephesians 4:26.."Be YE angry and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath" and note Ephesians 4:31-"Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you with all malice..."

May you be blessed in JESUS name. Love the blog and will visit again this weekend so I can read the other posts.

LaTonya/FL

godlover said...

I came across your blog for the first time this evening as I was busy going from link to link to link (that's always so much fun but I tend to get lost and then find out when I come up for air that it's 2 hours later)!

I believe God hears all prayers and I certainly don't think they bounce off the ceiling. But I also believe that He won't answer those which are not aligned according to His perfect will. I believe when we're angry or frustrated or whatever emotion is raging, we have an "editor" that steps in and rephrases our prayers; that being the Holy Spirit. He intercedes for us and prays the prayers we can't pray. I don't think we have to worry about what our prayers are about or what mood we're in when we pray them. [Obviously, within reason.]

I have a clip taped in the front of my Bible that I've carried around for years. Sadly, I can't remember where I got it but it says: "If you have a problem, don't hide it from God or from yourself. Tell Him about it. Don't put on a pious act and try to smooth it over. If you are angry at God, say so." [You think He doesn't already know??] "If you are upset at something He has done, tell Him so. If you are resentful, bring it out into the open and resolve it. If you are happy and glad, express your joy and praise to Him. That is what worship is all about--the honest expression of your heart to God. God is Spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). God is looking for that kind of worshiper. If you can be honest before God--even with all your moods, sins, failures, pain, and questioning--you will find grace to meet all your needs." Like this says, I think it's the honesty that God seeks more than the contents of our prayers. I don't know about you but I've certainly read a few Psalms that made my ears burn from the anger in them.

I hope you don't mind a stranger butting into your blog. I'm always searching for blogs to read and this one spoke to my heart. And these are my thoughts for what they're worth.

Blessings
Marj
http://gdlvr.blogspot.com

godlover said...

I just had to come back and comment further. There is an account somewhere in the Bible (OT I think) where the prayers of a nonbeliever were heard by God. I wish I could remember where it's at or some key word for which I could search, but my mind just won't cooperate. But I remember God commenting that He had heard this man's prayers. (It may have been God commenting through a prophet. I just can't remember and probably shouldn't comment on that account.) I believe He heard my prayers before I came to know Christ. I was a Jehovah's Witness for over 13 years and I know He heard my prayers because it was He that pulled me out of that cult and the only reason He would have done that was by having heard my prayers. He reached out to me and pulled me to Himself. I had so much love for Him but I was so tightly wrapped up in all the error of that cult that I couldn't possibly find Him on my own. You hear people say, the Lord "called" me and in my case He truly did. I had no choice in the matter, He called me out because He had heard how much I loved Him! I would never have had the courage to leave the JWs on my own. That I know for sure so it could only be that He heard my prayers. What do you think?

Robin Lambright said...

Just an FYI, I did a bit of internet searching and came accross this site.

http://www.neverthirsty.org/pp/corner/read/r00040.html
It may lend some insigts into this topic.

God Answers Prayer. God answers the prayers of 1) those who seek Him, 2) those who confess their sins and repent and 3) those who are righteous. Does God hear the prayers of non-Christians? According to Jeremiah 29:13. God says He will hear the prayer of any who seek Him and He proves it in Acts 10:31. This passage is a wonderful example of God answering the prayer of an unbeliever whose name is Cornelius. How else shall a man or woman be saved except to call on the name of the Lord.

Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 'And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. (NASB) Jeremiah 29:12-13

'Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. (NASB) Acts 10:31

godlover said...

Yes! Acts 10:31 is the account I was thinking of. As I stated on Robin's blog, as soon as I heard the name it clicked in my mind that that was what I was talking about. It upsets me when I know the Bible says something somewhere and I just can't remember where and can't think of a key word on which to do a search! Does this happen only to me or do you ladies have that problem too sometimes?

Marj
Calaveras County CA
http://gdlvr.blogspot.com

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Yes, I agree that he hears non-believers that are seeking Him. I believe that He doesn't hear those who are nonbeliever and are just praying for help or whatever but not asking for His salvation. I believe that is what John 9:31 was indicating also.

Good conversation.

Marj, if I can speak for Broken Vessels, no one is a stranger and all are welcome to the Lord's table...to the feast of learning more about Him.

God Chaser said...

Ladies, I have not been able to get on for a few days. I am so please you have join me for this topic and thanks for all the information. I will be reading the scripture references and posting in the next day or so.

Marg you are more than welcome Sweetpea is right- no one is a stranger and I pray more will find this site and participate.
Robin thanks for the site I will check it out.
Godlover I believe god heard your prayer. I also believe it was always in His plan you would come to Him as you did and you open the door and He responded becasue He was waiting for your call.
Marj you are right-The Holy Spirit prays for us becasue we don't know what to pray for and when we come with the wrong attitude I am sure He intercedes for us. I too don't like it when I can't a scripture I know is in the word, but just liek you my experience has been God will take me to somehow.
Robin I never thought about the person we are praying for as not listening to God and that's the reason prayers appear to go un answered -great insight thanks for sharing your story with us.
sweet Pea- Paula- i got it right this time I am so sorry
I agree God changes our will as we know HIm more and more His will does become our will resulting in more answered prayer. If we ask according to His will than we know He hears us.

godlover said...

Paula, I agree with you that God doesn't listen to the selfish prayers of the unbelievers. But then I'm tempted to say He doesn't listen to our selfish prayers either but I know that's not right. I know God listens to our every prayer. I mean, I really believe that.

Thanks for the warm welcome. I will check this sight regularly because I enjoy learning from each other and I enjoy the companionship.

Do you think it would be okay for everyone to put down what state they live in when they comment??? I really get a kick out of knowing who I'm conversing with and where they live. Anybody else have this feeling?

Marj
Calaveras County, CA
http://gdlvr.blogspot.com

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Marj for the time being, you can click on any "blue and underlined" name and it will pop up their profile. You MAY be able to see state and sometimes city on there.

For me, it is southern Indiana.

godlover said...

Thanks, Paula, I didn't know that. You learn something new every day. What is your blog address? I don't have it and I'd like to check it out. I may have visited you when I was linking all over the world but I didn't write it down if I did. You can put it here or you can email me at: maharvey2006@comcast.net

Thanks, Marj

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Marj,
I left you a comment on your blog also. But mine is:
www.hisways-isaiah558.blogspot.com

You can also find anyone's blog name by clicking on their 'blue' name, once on their profile, look at the bottom and it has the blog name. Just click there.

Smiles.

From the Heart said...

Thanks for your comment on Rachel's blog concerning anointing your house and praying over everything and everyone there.

I agree that God hears our prayers, but sometimes what we're praying for is not in His timing.
Isaiah 55:8-9 says "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the Lord." "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts."
So sometimes, as Paul said, we have to be content where we are.
I truly believe God answers all our prayers but it may not be when and in the way we want. That's why in the prayer He told us to pray it says, "Thy will be done."

I don't know what other people's beliefs are, but in the New Testament we are told there are "Fruits of the Spirit" and "Gifts of the Spirit". One of those gifts is speaking in tongues. I have that gift and have recently realized that God wants me to use it more when I pray. When you pray in the Spirit you are praying for God's perfect will. When I was recovering from back surgery and was still in the hospital, my husband told me later, that one of my daughters saw my lips moving (I have no knowledge of this, morphine puts me in a different world and most of the time I did not know what was going on). He told her that I was praying and later he said that one day I was praying in tongues. Even when I was not aware of what was going on God was with me and used me hopefully to help others. I will probably never know. There is a time and a place for all things. I pray that what I have written will help someone. I would not have done this if I had not felt impressed by God.

Someone told me one time I should write a book because of all the things that have happened in our lives and how God has always been right beside us. This bible study to me has been so awesome. I don't know how others feel but there are times that I truly feel that I know the people who have written on my blog. Somedays when I'm going through others blogs and reading comments on Rachel's blog I feel we are all in the same room. A pastor at my church told me that was the Holy Spirit drawing us together. In the days that we are living in now we need this kind of connection to uplift those who are hurting or sick or whatever the problem and rejoice with those who have received their blessings from God.
To God be the glory,
AliceE.

God Chaser said...

From the Heart
I believe we all were brought togethe rby the Holy Spirit also and it blesses my heart all these women studying together and praying for one another. What an awesome God we serve