LOVE YOUR ENEMIES, BLESS THOSE WHO CURSE YOU, DO GOOD TO THOSE WHO HATE YOU, AND PRAY FOR THOSE WHO SPITEFULLY USE YOU AND PERSECUTE YOU.   Matthew 5:44

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Prayer   (What to Pray for)

JER 33:3] `Call to Me, and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.'

This indicates that we should expect God to give us understanding or revelation during prayer. God answers faith. Therefore, we must have something to attach our faith to. That something must be the Word of God! There is a definite connection between ministry and prayer. This was adequately demonstrated by Jesus showing the importance of prayer to the son of man. The common question is how to pray and for what should we pray? This paper will attempt to supply some answers.

Praying for those who are in a difficult situation LK 22:31 "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; [32] but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; Deut 9:20] "And the LORD was angry enough with Aaron to destroy him; so I also prayed for Aaron at the same time.

We may ask for abundant grace and mercy for them. We may ask that their eyes will be opened to see the cause of the difficulty and be ministered repentance. Ask God to teach us and them in this situation. Ask God to show us anything in us that would require similar discipline. Ask Him to show us anything in us that would hinder our prayers. Ask God for that special love and compassion that will permit us to encourage them.

Ask that God will give continued revelation of His character and nature especially His love, justice, power, understanding and absolute faithfulness. Deut. 32:3] "For I proclaim the name of the LORD; Ascribe greatness to our God! [4] "The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He. It is easy to lose sight of these things during times of testing and trial. Pray that their faith will not fail. Ask God to impart His faith to them.

EPH 3:20 Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, [21] to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.

We should pray that each one will be given the eyes to see from the eternal viewpoint. Trials seem much smaller when seen from the beginning past the end. Pray that God would grant the grace to enter into continual high praise and worship and give them peace. Ask God to glorify Himself in each of these situations. Pray that this opportunity not pass without gaining some spiritual ground.

Pray that the inspiration of the Word of God would draw them deeper into the scriptures that they may find help and encouragement. PSA 199:50] This is my comfort in my affliction, That Thy word has revived me. PSA 199:92] If Thy law had not been my delight, Then I would have perished in my affliction. [93] I will never forget Thy precepts, For by them Thou hast revived me.

Stand with them against the powers of darkness and demonic work of deception. At this time they are vulnerable and may not be able to pray! Ask God to show us specific ways we can encourage and support them. Deeds of kindness and love! Maybe a tape, book, scripture, video, or just a card or an expression of gratitude for them.

First problem is to keep moving upward from hope to faith for them. >From someday to now! Now faith, IS now! Flesh hopes, spirit believes. Even though the answer delays keep praising Him because He is always working His purpose out. The longer the delay the more strength and encouragement they will need. Don't give up! Prayer is our responsibility.

Pray for the lukewarm and disinterested and those that hurt us. One of the common problems facing the church is this problem of failing to continue to move forward with God. We can't stay still. We either are going forward or we are going backward. The "lukewarm" have no idea that this is true and don't sense the danger. The "disinterested" have no fear of the danger ahead. Even though God desires ALL men to be saved He will still deal with us through these people until they receive the light to make a proper decision and commitment. Many times we don't pray out of desperation because we don't have a clear revelation of hell and eternal judgement. What are our motives in asking for these souls? Is it to make my life easier, more rewarding experience or a better personal testimony? Is it really for us or for them or for the Lord and His Kingdom?

It is easy and common to "pray amiss" because we have our own desires foremost. We may have been misused and hurt by these people and really haven't forgiven them completely. We may hold back "some forgiveness" until they make the change. MARK 11:25 "And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; [not just the one you are praying for] so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your transgressions. [26] ["But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions."

We may think that God should deal with "them" but God wants to deal with us first. Before we can pray right we need to ask God to reveal ALL that He has forgiven us and how much and how often. EPH 4:32] And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

Ask God to reveal all the blessings and growth that God has brought to us through those who have hurt us or someone we know. People who hurt people have deep needs and emotional problems that we know nothing about. God may not reveal them but knowing the possibility will help US minister forgiveness, grace and mercy. Ask God to give us the opportunity to express our compassion and concern for them personally in both word and deed. Deeds may speak louder than words. MATH 5:44 "But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you [45] in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

We may assume that when we are praying for the "lukewarm or disinterested" that we are OK but they have the problem. We may exalt ourselves that we are not like other men because we tithe etc. and are faithful. This pride will hinder our prayers. Prayers are sometimes used to mask our resentment. We should humble ourselves and confess that outside the grace of God we would be much worse than they. Pride will hold back the release of power with our prayer. We may even have contributed to problem we are praying about. We may ask God to reveal any stumbling blocks that we have placed in their path. We need to confess and repent and then set things right. Christians are sometimes the reason the unconverted are continuing to rebel against the drawing of God. SA 66:2 "But to this one I will look, To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.

Pray for the increase of consecration of each believer JOS 3:5 Then Joshua said to the people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you." The church can advance no farther or faster than their consecration. Every assembly is known for their consecration of lack of it. The greatest hindrance to full consecration is lack of understanding and lack of a true revelation of Who God is. Because they don't know Him they don't trust Him with their whole life and all that they have