One of the greatest hindrances to answered prayer is offense. Recently I was perusing a book on prayer and this jumped out at me. It was titled “Unforgiveness Hinders Your Prayers”. The last part of the Lord’s Prayer which Jesus prayed brings to light a very important principle.
Prayer will not work in an unforgiving heart. You cannot hold things against people and be offended and maintain a prayer life that is successful and gets results. It is so important for this to be realized and for it to be a true revelation to our minds!
In Ken Hagin’s workbook on prayer, he tells us this:
It is so natural, so human, to hold things against people; it is part of our carnal nature. I have had people who were saved and filled with the Holy Spirit, but who were not walking in the best of fellowship with the Lord, tell me just how badly they had been treated by someone. They would tell me in great detail what So-and-so did to them.
Then they would say, ‘Oh, yes, I have forgiven him, alright. But I will never forget how they treated me” (talking about their brother or sister in the Lord). So, you see, they really hadn’t forgiven that person. Unforgiveness was still in their hearts because it showed up in what they said.
In many cases people need help because they’re frustrated and mentally confused because they are harboring offenses on the inside of them against people. They need to forgive. Their frustration and confusion can many times be attributed to their unforgiveness.
I have read that medical doctors have found that resentment causes some people to be more prone to certain types of diseases. The doctors said that when they could get these people to get rid of resentment, often their ailments cleared up, when before they had not responded to treatment.
We are learning more and more how unforgiveness is connected to sickness and disease and ultimately with unanswered prayer. These things are all related. We don’t want anything to hinder our prayer lives.
As you can see, satan has tied many issues to offense from our health to our power in prayer, or lack thereof. No wonder the Bible tells us to beware of offense for a chance to be offended will come on a daily basis! We will delve deeper in this soon. We will find out why it is important to know the strategy of our enemy and how to successfully counteract it!
God bless you! See you soon!!
We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps. Proverbs 16:9 NLT
On a morning recently, as I was checking my Facebook, I saw a post by Lone Star Jake of Lone Star Inspirations.com. Jake is a fellow blogger and he is also one of my friends on Facebook.
Jake got married not too long ago and is blissfully happy! He often post about his sweet bride, Mrs. Lone Star Jake. One of his post grabbed my attention, and when it did a light bulb went off in my head!
When I woke up on a particular morning with my coffee in one hand and the other hand typing out fb.com, I immediately noticed the first posting was by Lone Star Jake. It just ‘grabbed’ me. This is what it said (I am using it with permission and changing the names).
As I read this God began to speak to my heart about it. He had me notice when Jake woke up that morning, he had no idea God had gone before him and arranged a day that would forever change two people’s lives. He had no idea God had gone before him and had literally orchestrated a blessing, not only for that day, but a blessing for every day of his life from that day forward. He had no idea his friend was bringing a friend. It may have looked like he had served and served his friends, just to have to move and sit alone, yet that decision pushed him toward an orchestrated and divine destiny!
As I thought about this love story, God reminded me He goes before us and makes the crooked paths straight. Your life may not be anything like you want it to be and relief may not seem anywhere in sight, but God has gone before you and orchestrated great things for your life, too. God doesn’t play favorites. What God did for Jake, He will do for all.
I thought of my children, who have yet to find that special person. One ‘small’ decision on their part will lead them straight to who God has for them and He knows how to set up the circumstances to get them to take that path. I have prayed many years for my children’s spouses. I know God has not only heard me, but has answered me and they will be a blessing to our family.
I know God has gone before me and prepared a house for hubby and me. One change in plans, one prompting of the Holy Spirit to ‘turn here’ is all it takes to walk right into the incredible blessing God has planned for us!
My brother is an attorney. He was working on an important case and needed to speak with another attorney that was working with another firm on a portion of that case. It was so important that he speak with him. He would call and this gentleman would be unavailable. Later, this gentleman would call my brother back and my brother would be unavailable. It was as if they were just missing each other by seconds.
My brother had to fly to New York for a business meeting. He had prayed God would help him meet with this man. Time was growing short and the necessity of that meeting was becoming more and more urgent!
My brother and the other attorney are both from and are still living in Texas and my brother made a mental note when he got back to Texas he HAD to see this gentleman as soon as possible. My brother’s flight had been delayed while in New York and he had to take another flight which made him have to go to another gate. This meeting was weighing so heavily on his mind, as he walked quite a ways out of the way to get to the gate where his rescheduled flight would be boarding, he was praying about it. Just as he rounded the corner, there sat the man he needed to speak with. He was on the same flight from New York to Texas as my brother. Ready for this? Their seats were side by side. By the time they got to Texas, their business was taken care of and all was well!
You see, friend, things such as delays, a change of seats, unexpected events in life, etc. can change your whole future and they happen so fast you stop later and think, ‘Whoa! What just happened and how?? I couldn’t have worked that out so perfectly if I tried!’ God always has a way of getting your destiny to you, and He is never late nor can the enemy stop it.
You may have been the low man on the totem pole, so to speak, all your life but when God gets ready to promote you, you are getting promoted! You may have lived in abject poverty all your life, but when God commands the blessing, God also has a way out of poverty and into ‘the palace’. People may have thought you weren’t much of anything, but when the time comes God will raise you up and His glory will so shine upon you, people will stop and say, “Who would have thought??” just as they did with Jesus’ disciples.
They had impressed no one. That is why people were so dumbfounded as they were used by God. Because they were known to be ‘unlearned men’ yet they spoke as though they had been to the greatest schools and had been trained under the greatest teachers. No matter what your level of education is, or the lack thereof, it won’t and can’t stop God’s blessing and favor upon your life!
Stop trying to make things happen. Stop trying to make God hurry His plan. Stop trying to figure out how He is going to do it and start believing He is. He has the way, keep your mind clear to hear His voice. Before you know it, you will be living the vision.
Ephesians 3:14 NIV For this reason I kneel before the Father[c] 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named. 16 I pray that He may grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power in the inner man through His Spirit, 17 and that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through faith. I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, 19 and to know the Messiah’s love that surpasses knowledge, so you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
20 Now to Him who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us— 21 to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
As I took my walk today, this verse just kept coming up in my spirit. I could not remember all of it at first, but the words ‘according to His power that is at work within us’ just kept coming up over and over in my mind with such an intensity and fervency I determined to look it up later.
I ended up getting busy with something but when I went to bed, yet again, I could not sleep because I could not get this phrase out of my mind. As the Lord began to break it down for me, I couldn’t sleep because I was too EXCITED!! Let us study this verse out and think about the ramifications of it.
‘…according to His power….’ I began to think about who ‘His’ was. ‘His’ is referring to God! It isn’t my power, it isn’t the power of the most influential person I know or even the most influential person! This power is the same power ‘no foe can withstand’ according to Psalm 91, which we know to be satan and any and all of his evil devices.
The definition of ‘power’ according to Webster’s dictionary is :
This is what happens when the power of God begins to manifest for your need. There is a power so strong we cannot even imagine its capacity that begins to literally do a work FOR you and inside you!
God is able to go beyond ALL we could ever ask or think to ask and His power resides within us bringing the unseen to the place where we not only see it, but we have it!! Whether it is healing, salvation from a terrible situation, or to take us, or bring us to great things, that great power is working in all of us to do ALL that is needed in our lives!
It is doing for and in you what you could NEVER do for yourself whether you lived a million years, knew the most influential people in the world, and had full favor with them…no flesh has the power to bring the blessing and fruition of the blessing of God to your life BUT God and that is what is happening on the inside of you, even now!
How do we get that power to work within us to full capacity and guarantee it continues to work within us bringing about the changes we need in our lives? According to the verses above this one, when we are rooted and grounded in the love of God it sets this power in motion.
Love is the most powerful force on the face of the earth! Love can do what strength, words, and laws cannot. You can’t stop it if you tried. It is power unleashed and unstoppable! It has a force that cannot be caught, halted, or depleted.
Have you ever seen a mother with her baby? If you know anything about mothers and children, you know there is nothing you can say or do to change the heart of a good mother toward her child! She would lay her life down for that baby, no matter how old the baby may be!
It doesn’t matter how much that child has misbehaved at school, it doesn’t matter how bad their attitude is. You better be very careful how you tell a mother their baby was less than an angel that day even if you were an eye witness to it! You could prove to the mother they threw the toys, took someone else’s cookies, and even kicked you, the teacher, in the shin! That mother will nod her head, hold that child’s hand, and love it all the more. Instead of anger, you will see a look of understanding, even compassion. She may even go on to make excuses such as, “Well, they didn’t get their nap, they were up late, we were rushed.” This mother isn’t meaning to excuse the child’s behavior, but her love has her covering the multitude of the child’s sin!
She will take them home, they will be corrected, but be sure once the correction has been administered, so will hugs and her love will be multiplied. NOTHING you can say, prove, or do will alter or change the intensity of the love a mother has for her child. The more someone tries to stop love, the stronger it will flourish! That is POWER! It knows no bounds and it never fails to produce and multiply…that is what is at work in you and me!
No matter how much we have messed up, behaved badly, screwed up chance after chance, God corrects us and then even more love than we knew before is extended and that power continues to work mightily in us to bring about the sure end to any deficit in character. It brings a sure end to any problem we could never overcome on our own. It brings the healing the doctor had no prescription for! It brings the POWER of the BLESSING straight to you in any and every form you need it to be in!!
Stay in God’s love, and His power will stay in you!
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. Philippians 4:8 NIV