Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Our Greatest Privilege

By Rick Blumenberg / @rickblumenberg
Prayer is our heavenly Father’s gift to connect us with Him and with His power source. It is sort of like our speed dial to God. We don’t have to look him up, find an excuse to talk to him or go through any sort of defense mechanisms. He is always available on our prayer speed dial and what it all boils down to is that prayer is our greatest privilege. Any good we want to do, prayer helps us do it better. Imagine the difference between an electric light and an oil lamp. Except for the beautiful ambiance of an oil lamp, there is no comparison. Just as we get more light from electricity than from an oil lamp, any good we want to do, prayer helps us do it better because it connects us with God as our power source.
The primary or first privilege of prayer is being able to commune with God. We were created for fellowship with God. Quiet talks, yes. Also praise, thankfulness, desperation, anger, etc. It’s all communion with God and that’s what he wants from us. Prayer is not only a duty, but a privilege and a blessing from God! On the other hand, sin is what separates us from God and destroys that communion. That’s why God hates sin so much—because it hurts the people he loves. But prayer is also God’s solution to that vexing problem. Prayer enables us to do away with sin by claiming Christ’s death and resurrection for our own salvation, enabling us to experience blissful communion with God.
We do need to recognize, however, that not all communion with God is blissful. Sometimes He needs something done that is really, really hard and He asks us to do it. The best example is Jesus coming to earth and his subsequent death on the cross. He didn’t want to face death any more than you or I would. But Jesus knows God’s way is always right and He was being asked to do something that just had to be done—something no one else could do. So he did it. Christ needs to be our example, knowing God will be just as dependable for us as he was with the Lord Jesus Christ when he was here on earth as a human. If there is something difficult God wants us to do, he will empower us to do it.
This brings up the second privilege of prayer, to accomplish God’s Will. That’s what Jesus told us to do in what we call the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:10) for God’s Kingdom to come and God’s Will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. This phrase should be in most of our prayers, because God accomplishes his will at least partially through the prayers of faithful persons. We not only try to do his will, we help to bring it about through our prayers.
The Apostle Paul wrote, “Pray also for me,…” (Ephesians 6:19) and this shows us another important privilege of the ministry of prayer—to work together with God. Prayer is the best method of Divine-human cooperation—our primary way to connect with God and His power. God gives us wisdom, guidance, empowerment, protection and many other helps and we give him our love and a physical body through which he can work. That’s a really good trade-off.
I'm Rick Blumenberg . . . and that's My View from Tanner Creek.
     

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