Prayer and Purpose
Prayer and Purpose
What is the purpose of prayer? How does it work out God's purpose in our lives? If you have purpose, you have a sense of direction. But, finding our purpose is often not the central issue. The heart of the matter is yielding to God in prayer physically, intellectually, spiritually, and emotionally.
Prayer, when done correctly, encompasses the entire person. So the purpose of prayer is to get all of you involved. You cannot pray effectively with your mouth separated from your spirit. Jesus spoke of the Pharisees in this respect: He answered and said to them, "Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: 'This people honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me...' (Mark 7:6).
So it's possible to engage in the ritual of prayer without the devotion of prayer. but if you really want to be engaged in God's purpose, all of you must be involved in prayer. For effective prayer involves the whole being--the spirit, the soul, and the body. It takes the whole person to pray, and prayer affects the entire person as a result.
Something wonderful and supernatural happens to you in intercession when you're submitted to God in your heart and lifestyle. As you pray, God's purposes are accomplished in your life, because there is a plan being worked in you. By engaging in earnest prayer to Him, a transformation occurs within you to bring you to the will and purpose of God in your life.
"And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose." (Romans 8:27-28)
Those who give all in prayer receive all in the answer. Whatever you put it is what you get out. Many times we pray for things, while at the same time, parts of our lives have not been submitted to God.
If He asks us to do something that is not in keeping with our desire, we often won't do it--but that's where the answer is. If you pray for a relationship to be healed, and the Lord requires you to appolize, what happens if you refuse? You simply forfeit your answer. A prevalent practice in the Church today is that we compartmentalize ourselves when we come to God. We give Him only what is convenient. But we must give Him everything. The saints of history and the Bible experienced great things from God, and walked in His purpose because they were given to much prayer.
You can't expect to have a flimsy, halfhearted prayer life and simultaneously do great things for God. It simply doesn't work that way. The greater the prayer life, the stronger the anointing. The greater the prayer life, the greater the experience--and the greater the purpose. God must have wholehearted men and women through whom He can work out His purposes and plans. But He cannot use people who are halfhearted, inconsistent, or unstable. That's whey the Bible says in James 1:7 that an unstable person will not get anything from God. Instability is one of the gravest problems in our churches. Wholehearted commitment that manifests the purpose of God comes only as we yield to His purpose in prayer.
Purpose involves our ambitions, goals, and aspirations. But God's purposes are so different from what we are trained to desire or expect. In Church, we often have major dreams, visions, and illusions of grandeur. The issue is that some of these dreams and visions have nothing to do with the purpose of God in most of our lives.
Many of us look at other people and see how they have come to a certain point. As a result, we think that's where we are going.
But do you know where these people have gone?
If you knew the real story and considered the price, sacrifice, and heartache they had to endure to get there, you wouldn't dare think of traveling the same road. Please do not sit and envy someone's position and power with illusions of greatness. Pray into your own purpose until your mind, will, intellect, and spirit become conformed to the will of God.
It is then that the purpose of God for you will unfold.
Praying in purpose is about coming to God without an agenda. Even if I do have an agenda, I am willing to lay my agenda before the Lord, if necessary. I must be ready, willing, and able to forget my agenda, if it is not in keeping with His will. There is nothing wrong with coming to God with an agenda, but always leave it "open." You can't serve or please God with an adamant, strong-willed attitude.
As you think about all the things you hope to be and become, ask yourself, "Are they in keeping with God's will?" Many people die angry and frustrated, because they have never said, "Thy will be done."
I challenge you to surrender yourself wholly to the Lord that you may fulfill His purposes for your life, and experience the fullness of His joy.