God enjoins us to pray. To pray, and believe that God is going to answer. That we are going to get a result. God has told us that we are stewards of our time. If prayer was a waste of time, God would never tell us to pray without ceasing.
Jesus told us to ask and keep on asking, and we will receive. Matthew 7:7. You don't just ask once, call it faith, and give up. Jesus taught persistence in prayer. You persist UNTIL you know in your HEART that God has answered, or until God shows you that your prayer is totally outside of His plan for your life. A lot of times people give up just before they get the answer. Sometimes it seems that God in His mercy and grace answers even AFTER a person seems to have given up. Which goes to show that we really ought to be pressing in.
We are going after answers. But answers don't always come cheaply. I have found that Jesus does give Himself out easily to casual enquirers. In most cases, there has to be a certain amount of earnestness and sincerity in our hearts before God will take notice and answer. One way we can show sincerity is by fasting – that is, voluntarily abstaining from food. After a day or so, you really don't persist with something like this unless you mean business.
In the process of praying, we should also be thankful to God. We need to thank God the Father for what He has already done for us – which is a lot. God has given us all things that have to do with life and godliness. (2 Peter 1:3). In practical terms, God has given most of us food, water, a roof over our heads, clothes, family, education, His Word, His Spirit and plenty of opportunities. If we thank God for these things and show gratitude, it pleases the Father, and I would say that our prayers are more likely to be answered. Show a little gratitude for what you already have when you ask for more. A little gratitude can go a long way with our Father God.
We need revival all over the world. We need God's message in purity and truth. We can't settle for a flim-flam revival of froth and bubble where manifestations occur but no lasting change occurs in people's lifestyles. We need the kind of revival where the love of God moves people to acts of sacrifice for one another, where God speaks supernaturally to people about giving, and serving, and ministering to people. If it isn't happening, pray more. Pray until it happens. Pray more and more.
How much do we really WANT the things of God? How valuable are these things to us? If a wave of salvation was to move over our cities and towns, could we put a dollar value on that? There are a lot of things we will do for dollars, but what will we do for something that is PRICELESS? But do we even believe that God will reward those who diligently seek Him? Do we believe He is willing to save people, show mercy, and forgive the sins of people in our town or city? We really need to believe this, because He is willing. Its just that unbelief stops us. We need to deal with ourselves and our flesh if we find our hearts are full of unbelief. God hates it, it offends Him, it is tantamount to calling God a liar. So we need to get delivered of it.
The most important faith after the faith to receive God's mercy through the blood of Jesus Christ is the faith that believes that God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. So, are you going to do it?
I don't know your situation. You might be a busy mother, and in that case finding an extra 30 minutes a day to pray might be as big a sacrifice as it would be for someone else like me to pray 5 hours a day in tongues and in other ways. But that 30 minutes will count for God. Its not easy being a mother of small children. But if you can have a life of prayer as such, you can do it in any situation.
You might be a student at University. You have your studies to do – sure. But apart from that, are you willing to REALLY pray. You could pray for a move of God on your campus. Yes, it might mean giving up some perfectly legitimate social times with friends so you can withdraw from it all and contact God with your spirit. It might mean giving up time on video games, strategy games or whatever it is that might capture your fancy. If you want something of ETERNAL value it is going to cost you. God has made His blessings available, and they are great, but few Christians ever receive much of them because the devil and the world conspire to keep them lukewarm, or at least – distracted.
You may be a father. You may work long hours and then come back to a family which is demanding. Well, maybe you can really pray hard in the car, instead of just listening to the radio or whatever. Or maybe you can get up half and hour earlier. These things count, these things create the conditions where you are going to hear the genuine voice of God to your own life. These things are the foundation for a different destiny that what you get by conforming to the pattern of the world or of church people who really don't go after the things of God with all their heart.
I really want to see God move. I don't want to just live the rest of my life in settled mediocrity. If there is no revival river pushing me along, I want to pray until the Spirit of God IS flowing in and around my life. I need the Spirit of God. I want to be a believer in the sense of John 7:37-39 and John 14:12. This is not something that is just up to God. It can't happen without God, but it won't happen without me. And it won't happen for you either unless you either make it happen or get yourself to a place where it is already happening thanks to someone else's intercession and faith.
A lot of churches say that they want God, but you have to look at the way time is spent, not at what they SAY. If people don't regularly want to give up sleep or food to pray, I say they aren't going to get much except maybe survival rations of the Spirit. To truly make an impact we are going to have to go way become "the minimum". God is willing, God wants to do it. Maybe God is stirring your heart by reading this article. When you do it, then God will meet you. "Draw near to God and He will draw near to you." (James 4:7).
As well as praying a lot by myself, I like praying with others. If you like praying and especially if you like praying in tongues together with others, I am up for it. Don't contact me if the only reason you do so is so you can ask me to give you money. But if you want God to move, and you like to invest your precious time in seeking Him for an outpouring of the Spirit, we ought to talk.