Do Life Better:
Do you spend regular time in prayer? When you pray, do you feel like it’s really making a difference? Scripture tells us “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective” (James 5:16). What can you do to become more deeply connected to God in your prayer life?
Here are some keys to effective prayer:
- Make sure your prayer is in line with God’s will. (1 John 5:14-15)
- Make sure you don’t have any unconfessed sins in your heart. (Isaiah 59:2, 1 John 1:9)
- Don’t pray out of selfish desires or motives. (James 4:3)
- Pray continually. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
Food for Thought: (adapted from YouVersion devotional The I-Factor)
The crucifixion means that every sin in our past has been washed away, every wound has been healed, and every bondage has been broken. The tide of blood that flowed from Calvary has carried away everything that would make us feel guilty, ashamed, bitter, and regretful, and has made possible a life of total freedom, healing, wholeness, and redemption. It gives us a fresh start every single day. . .
Many times, people allow their pasts to define their presents and their futures. There are women who have felt guilty about wanting to have children and thought they did not deserve the joy of motherhood because they had abortions in their pasts.
There are divorced people who are afraid to fall in love again because the pain of broken marriage still haunts them. Or business people who will not even try to fulfill their potential because someone stole from them or cheated them out of what they had worked for years ago. I know people who cannot even see their good qualities because they grew up being told they were stupid, worthless, irresponsible, or ugly.
Perhaps you also know people who have suffered these same situations or something similar. Maybe I’ve even described you.
Now is the time—I mean right now, this minute—to make up your mind that your past no longer matters. When it doesn’t matter, it can’t influence you. Until the past is rendered impotent in your mind, it will affect the way you see yourself, the way you view others, and the way you think about your future, whether you realize it or not. It’s time for that to stop. Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32, emphasis added).
Here’s the truth: Your past does not belong to you. It does not have to haunt you or hover over your mind anymore. It belongs to God and that’s why He can rewrite it as He chooses.
“Prayer is relational communication with God, not ritual communication with God.” – Tony Evans