Summary: This Mother’s Day, Pastor Dennis will be looking at how we go about touching the heart of God and the three H’s of prayer that God hears.
Touching the Heart of God
The other day as I was looking at the topic of prayer, this came across my desk. “A faithful Christian mother will seek to carry her children in at least three places: in her womb, in her heart, and in her prayers.”
We see such faithfulness on the part of Hannah, the wife of Elkanah in 1 Samuel chapters 1-2. She was unable to conceive. So, she faithfully prayed for a son so she could give him back to serve the Lord for the rest of his life.
God then gave her a boy and she named him Samuel, whom we know as the prophet Samuel, and after he was weaned, she came back to the temple and there said to Eli, the high priest …
“For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. Therefore, I also have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the Lord.” (1 Samuel 1:27-28 NKJV)
And the Lord continued to bless Hannah in that afterward she then gave birth to three more sons and two daughters.
Now, talking about being a mother who prays, one mother said this. “In prayer, I find more humility, patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-control. In spending time with my Heavenly Father and realizing how broken I am, I have more patience with my children and their brokenness. I need to be a praying mom so that I can be a better mom.”
One of the things that I see in our house is how much Michaela prays for our kids and grandkids. Not a day goes by that she isn’t praying for them before she even prays for herself and the healing she so desperately needs.
And from her prayers I have seen, not only a change in me but a change in our kids and grandkids. That is the power of a praying mom, or let me say it this way, that is the power that is available for every believer in Jesus Christ.
The Bible says, “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” (James 5:16b NKJV)
Now, the first thing that most people get discouraged by, and which causes many the say a cursory prayer only, or not remain consistent or faithful in their prayer life is the belief that this verse doesn’t apply to them, because as far as they’re concerned they are in no way righteous, they are no Prophet Elijah who prayed and brought down fire and rain from heaven.
But just so we don’t miss this, James goes on to say that Elijah was no different than the rest of us. He just prayed believing (James 5:17).
And so, the righteousness that James is speaking to is not the righteousness that we have, but rather the righteousness of Jesus Christ that we inherit when we come to faith in Him as our Savior and our Lord.
But this really isn’t where I want to go in our time together today. Yes, I want to talk with you about prayer, not just the prayer life of mothers, but the prayer life of all of us. And my point is that there is nothing more precious to God than when we call out to Him, no matter the motive behind the prayer, God just wants to hear from us, the same way we want to hear from our kids and grandkids.
As most of you know my birthday was last week. And the one thing that stood out above it all is how our kids and grandkids got on the phone in video chat to wish me a happy birthday. They were even smiling when they did!
But this whole message actually came from a conversation we were having in one of our men’s Bible Study on Wednesday evening. I can’t remember what started the conversation, but we started talking about our motives when we come to God in prayer.
And while we are told of our need to come to God in prayer, we need to be careful that we don’t come with the wrong motives as we’re told in James’s letter.
“You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.” (James 4:2b-3 NKJV)
And then in the prayer that Jesus taught us to pray, it begins with our adoration of God, you know, “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:9-10 NIV)
And only after this are we to lift up our prayer request to God. And it is in these verses from Jesus and James that we end up feeling guilty about our prayer life, and how it really doesn’t measure up to what the Bible says. And so, we just don’t pray, we don’t call on God.