Glorifying God through Prayer and Worship
Living a Life that totally Glorifies God
You have Not, Because you Ask Not
You will find these seven words in James 4:2, the seven closing words of the verse, “Ye have not, because ye ask not.” These seven words contain the secret of the poverty and powerlessness of the average Christian, of the average minister, and of the average church. “Why is it,” many a Christian is asking, “that I make such poor progress in my Christian life? Why do I have so little victory over sin? Why do I win so few souls to Christ? Why do I grow so slowly into the likeness of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ?” And God answers in the words of the text: “Neglect of prayer. You have not, because you ask not.”
“Why is it,” many a minister is asking, “that I see so little fruit from my ministry? Why are there so few conversions? Why does my church grow so slowly? Why are the members of my church so little helped by my ministry, and built up so little in Christian knowledge and life?” And again God replies: “Neglect of prayer. You have not, because you ask not.”
“Why is it,” both ministers and churches are asking, “that the church of Jesus Christ is making such slow progress in the world today? Why does it make so little headway against sin, against unbelief, against error in all its forms? Why does it have so little victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil? Why is the average church member living on such a low plane of Christian living? Why does the Lord Jesus Christ get so little honor from the state of the church today?” And, again, God replies: “Neglect of prayer. You have not, because you ask not.”
Excerpt From: Torrey, R.A. “The Power of Prayer.”
PRAY WITHOUT CEASING
Along with our faith in God, prayer is one of the important essentials in our Christian life. Jesus commanded us to pray always as well as Paul the apostle telling us to pray without ceasing. Anyone reading the Old as well as the New Testament can clearly see that prayer is one of the fundamentals for an effective relationship with God. I encourage you to go through the bible and read some of the prayers of God’s Saints such as Salomon, Daniel, Hannah, Abraham’s servant, Nehemiah, and of course, our Lord and Savior Jesus Himself.
However, that being said, how much time do we really spend praying? We can get so caught up in our “Church Agenda’s” that our prayer time gets push aside, even relegated to a weekly or even biweekly meeting. Brothers and sisters in Christ, this should never be. For I tell you that there is nothing more important than prayer, not even worship or the sermon. For we must remember that it’s our prayers that can change not only our lives, but the lives of others as well. And let’s remember that our Lord Jesus said that “men ought always to pray, and not to faint,” as well as: “My house shall be called the house of prayer.” (Matthew 21:13, Isaiah 56:7) But again, what are we doing as a Church? Are we following Paul’s teachings to Timothy which states that we as a church should put prayer first and foremost above all? For He said to Timothy “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4 KJV)
Wow, did we grasp what was quoted above? Our prayers can change the hearts of those who are in authority as well as change the destiny of one’s eternal life as well. Prayer is about us partnering with God for the souls of men, women and children who need healing, raising from the dead, comforting and most of all salvation. Yes, worshiping God and being encouraged by the preacher’s exhortation is a wonderful part of our church gathering, but it could never ever come about if it weren’t for prayer.
So that being said, what should our church service look like. Well, taking God at His word, we should be putting prayer upfront and foremost in our gatherings. I feel in my heart that we as a church should be spending at least 70% of our time together in prayer. And mixed in with prayer, maybe 15% or more of worship and praise, and no more than 15% of a message of exhortation. I say this because I see this to be true in scripture as it is here in the book of Acts: These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers. (Acts 1:14)
"I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours. ... "I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. ... "I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; "that they all may be one, as You, Father, [are] in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. ... "Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. (John 17:9, 15, 20-21, 24) So we see, prayer changes everything, so doesn't make sense that "Men Ought always to Pray?"
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. (1 Timothy 2:1-2 NKJV)