I was studying the other day and thinking about how we can get closer to God and renew our enthusiasm for the word. Our Zeal if you will.
I kept going over in my mind the normal things you say to a person or yourself when you want to get a closer relationship to God. You know the 4 cardinal routines that we have to do if we want that relationship to grow.
I pretended to myself that some one was seriously asking me how to do this. As I started thinking about what to say I realized that if I truly asked the right questions it would put this person really on the spot. And then I realized that is exactly what we have to do to ourselves to successfully build real and lasting rapport with the Father in Heaven.
Here are some of the detailed questions I came up with. They helped me, if you really ask yourself these questions maybe they will help you as well.
1. Spend Time With God in Prayer
We all hear this and know it to be true but lets dig a little deeper;
a. How Much time to you spend?
Is it just enough to say that you have prayed or do you stick with it till you have lost yourself in the prayer. By that I mean you are no longer conscious of the sounds around you. You are totally focused on your prayer and what God is bringing to your mind in answer to that prayer.
James 5:16 ……The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
The Greek word for effectual fervent prayer is “energeō” en-erg-eh’-o
From G1756; to be active, efficient: – do, (be) effectual (fervent), be mighty in, shew forth self, work (effectually in).
James is telling us here that a prayer that avails much is a prayer that we put much effort into. I believe God is drawn to those prayers where there is much energy put into it. Our English word energy by the way seems to have come from the Greek word family that energeo comes from.
b. Next consider how often do you come to God in prayer?
Daniel prayed three times a day and he was so concerned with doing it that he risked his life when Nebuchadnezzar demanded that he stop. Do you make it a habit in your life to pray EVERY day to God. How important is it to you that you do so? Do you think it unreasonable to pray three times a day to God? Would you risk your life to do that very thing? Daniel did!
I ask these questions to get you to see the attitude that you have hidden inside of you. Do you resent the thought that you might be required to pray three times a day? Well if you do feel that way you may have a spiritual problem but rest assured that God does not require that, rather, He is watching to see whether you do or not.
c. What do you pray about?
Are they always “gimme” prayers? Do you find yourself always asking for things that you could really do for yourself if you took proper charge of your life. Sure there are many things that we come to God for in prayer but analyze what you are asking and see if the answer really lies in you.
Do you make it a point to pray for others? Are you only concerned about yourself or do you spend time actively and earnestly in prayer for others as well.
Do you take the time to really talk to the Father expecting answers? I don’t mean that the Father is going to start talking to you BUT He will make known the answers you are looking for if you are earnestly seeking them in the right kind of prayer, listening for those answers to manifest themselves in your mind as a result of your asking. That is faith in action brethren.
As you can see I discovered that just saying in our minds that we need to pray more to develop a better relationship with God compasses a lot more than it appears on the surface.
Put God first in your life. Start your day with an early morning prayer to get it going in the right direction. Recharge yourself in the middle of the day by seeking God’s guidance and power to keep you walking the correct paths for that day, remembering that we are to be lights to the world and we are to be working as if we are working for God Himself. and then take the time at the end of the day to give him thanks and praise.
There is nothing here we don’t already know but the problem is that we in the Laodicean ERA of the church have had this information drummed into us for so long that sometimes we take it for granted. God says that as the called out ones in this ERA most have grown lukewarm because of having been given so much for such a long time we do not have the zeal anymore to even give an effective fervent prayer. This is just a friendly reminder that Christ is knocking on your door asking to come in. In order to open that door you must repent and get back that Zeal that you have lost.
We will go over the other pillars to getting close to God in future posts (Bible Study – Meditation – Fasting)