In the introductory words of The Battle Plan for Prayer, by Stephen and Alex Kendrick, they write, "Answered prayers aren't merely highly unlikely coincidences. They are fingerprints of a living, loving God who invites all of us to draw close to Him, the One who made us and is not far from each of us; for in Him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:27-28)."
I love the imagery those words paint in my mind. It brings to mind the Steven Curtis Chapman song Fingerprints of God. We are all products of God's creative genius; or, as Ephesians 2:10 states, "God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
God, like prayer, isn't meant to be a mere afterthought to our busy day's and life's activities. And, while that may be the case and sad reality in terms of our prayer lives; it is not the case regarding God's involvement in our lives. He is involved in the intimate details of our every moment.
The wonderful realization in this scripture is that we were created to join Him in the work He does. What an incredible thought that the God of creation desires to form a partnership so that we can join Him and His Son in all their good work. And y'all, that's where the good stuff is at! His good work!
No doubt, we can accomplish much in our own strength. But, those achievements are all wood, hay and stubble that burn up, tarnish or fall victim to thievery. These in-our-own-strength, man-made-accomplishments cannot accompany us beyond the grave.
However, the products of partnership to His good works have eternal consequence. Not of our own power and might, but by the Spirit's! Which brings me back to the matter of answered prayers.
When's the last time you recognized some occurrence in your life as an answer to prayer? Or, for that matter, when's the last time you fervently prayed asking heaven for a mighty move of God's hand in a situation? Prayer like this is an act of trust that demonstrates my need and desire for God to be involved. Perhaps too, it's admission that .. I'm really not in control here!
Whatever your answer to the above questions, maybe it's been too long! I believe God is involved in and cares about my daily life. And, His fingerprints are everywhere if we just slow down long enough to take notice. He longs for us to walk and talk with him in the cool of the day (Genesis 3:8).
Of course, that intimate conversation and prayer life begins with a right relationship that can only be established through the redemptive work of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. If you have not begun that friendship, start there first! Click here to get help in that regard.
If you already know Christ as Savior, but do not have a daily prayer life; or, simply do not feel you could ever ask God to be involved in such an intimate and personal way, I hope to challenge you to taste and see that the Lord is good! Commit to a time daily when you can put life on pause, read a small passage of scripture and pray. Begin simply by asking God to change your thinking where it's not aligned with His. If you earnestly do that, it won't be long until you start experiencing the power of prayer.
"Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (msg)