Friday, May 23, 2008

Six Ways to Hinder Your Prayers

Tim Challies @ deals with the topic of prayer and the hindrances to them. In summary form:

Like David, we should all pray, “O God, hear my prayer; give ear to the words of my mouth” (Psalm 54:2). If Christians did not believe in the efficacy of prayer, there would be no reason for us to ask anything of God. He is the one who tells us that we can have confidence that our prayers ascend to Him. “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him” (1 John 5:14,15).

Selfish Motives

In 1 John 5:14 and 15, the apostle tells us that our confidence comes from asking “according to his [God’s] will.” James similarly exhorts “You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions” (James 4:3).

Turning Away From Scripture

“If one turns away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer is an abomination” (Proverbs 28:9).

Unforgiving Hearts

In Mark 11:25 Jesus says, “And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”

Family Discord

The apostle Peter, a married man himself, exhorted husbands to live with their wives in an understanding way, being sensitive to their needs, “showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered” (1 Peter 3:7).

Unconfessed Sin

“If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened” (Psalm 66:18)


(James 1:5-7).

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