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Not everyone will agree to what I will say. But allow me to share my views as it comes from my encounter with God. It takes a lot of spiritual discernment to know what to ask for. Unfortunately, human as we are, our prayers are swayed and sometimes blinded or influenced by our emotions and feelings. Given this, we sometimes do not know what we pray for. Even with a good heart and with the purest of intentions, there are times we unknowingly pray for things that can even be bad or harmful to us. Nevertheless, we need to persist in those prayers knowing that God always listens. In our persistence and God in all His loving goodness, may not always give us what we pray for. Instead, He will lead and give us the dream behind our prayer. Let me share about this viewpoint from my experience. More than 2 decades ago, I lost my girlfriend to someone else. It was a crushing loss because I loved her dearly. I prayed stubbornly to God hoping to win back my girlfriend. For a year, I prayed like I never prayed to the point that I was already able to taste my prayers. One Sunday mass, my mind was wandering thinking about this past girlfriend of mine when, for some unknown reason, my attention caught the last lines of the priest's sermon. He said, "You and I know that we always do not know what we want. Only the One who made us knows what is right and good for us. But stubborn as we are, we attempt to ask God for things that can harm us. But don't worry. Just persist in your prayers. God may not answer your prayer the way you want Him to, but be assured that He will grant the dream behind your prayers." I understood the point of that sermon. I realized when I was praying to God to help me win back my girlfriend, I was actually praying for something much deeper that. It was not apparent to me then but God knew exactly what it was. I was actually praying for a beautiful, trustworthy and God-fearing woman that could be a good wife and good mother to my children. THIS was the dream behind my prayer. A few months later God introduced me to someone. I am now happily married for 20 years to this woman who is clearly a personal gift from God. She is the dream behind my prayer - a perfectly good wife and perfectly good mother to my children. God truly rewards persistent and fervent praying - even if you sometimes do not know what you pray for. Try it and do expect receiving the dream behind your own prayers. :-)
Matt. 6:7, 8—"When praying, do not say the same things over and over again as the people of the nations do, for they imagine they will get a hearing for their use of many words. 8 So do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need even before you ask him." Luke 11:9, 10—"So I say to you, keep on asking, and it will be given you; keep on seeking, and you will find; keep on knocking, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone asking receives, and everyone seeking finds, and to everyone knocking, it will be opened." One major key to prayers being answered is for us to determine whether or not our prayers are in harmony with God's will for mankind and the earth... after all, our prayers should be about things that bring honor and glory to Him and not to ourselves. Sometimes prayers may also have already been answered, just not in the way we'd expect... or even want. Again, God's will first, ours way down the list. Many years ago, Gale Sayers, one of footballs greatest running backs, wrote an autobiography entitled "I Am Third." The title was based on his statement: "God is first, my friends are second, I am third." Perhaps, according to Jesus' teachings, it might read: "God is first, my friends are second, my enemies are third, I am fourth." These are the priorities as spoken of and taught by Jesus (Matt. 22:37-39; Luke 6:35). So ask yourself: Am I praying for the sanctification of God's name and for his kingdom arrangement to be here on earth, as Jesus recommended (Matt. 6:9, 10)? Do I treat others as I would like to be treated (Matt. 7:12)? Do I pray for my enemies before asking for something for myself? The answer might be an indication as to why our prayers are not seemingly answered. Prayer should be an affair of the heart... spoken of from the depths of our needs, although the scriptures spoken by Jesus tell us that God already knows what we need before we ask. So is our prayer a NEED... or a WANT? Food for thought, wouldn't you agree? My thanks for your question... I hope you come away with some insight from the answers on your behalf.
The question is: "Is it acceptable to repeatedly pray for the same thing?" Luke 18:1 ¶ And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint - give up; Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: and there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; yet because this widow troubles me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge says. Jesus here give an example of a woman coming before a judge continually to get what she wanted and did so until he finally relented and granted her request because of her perseverance. We can and should do the same in our prayers to God, to come before Him with boldness seeking an answer to our prayers.. Luke 18: verse 7 goes on to say:....shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Now notice verse 8:.......... Nevertheless when the Son of man comes, shall he find faith on the earth? Good question, when we ask we must believe that we will receive an answer or none will come. The answer might be not at this time. James 1:6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. We repeatedly ask the God's Kingdom come do we not? We daily ask that He provide us with our daily bread, do we not? He expects us to repeatedly ask Him for all that we have need of at any given time! His ears are always open to our requests made in believing faith!
Michael Houdmann made very good points, in some word of faith circles they teach that to ask more than once is not faith. I had followed that line of thinking for some time until I saw what was happening in the scriptures Michael mentioned above. So now I consider what I ask for, I usually wait for God to tell me what to pray for. He gives us the desire of our hearts, meaning He puts it in our heart and then fulfills the desire. I have also found that as I read my bible I find the things that I think I need to pray for and since I found them in the bible then I just begin to believe what it says and it comes to pass. I try and stay sensative to the Holy Spirit and see what He is leading me to pray. This has made my life so much easier and stress free. Not always having to have faith in my faith but just knowing God knows what I need and that He will hook me up just because He loves me. He gave me this verse the other day for some reason but I am holding on to it; 1 Tim 6:17-18 17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. NIV This is the one I currently use in my life; 2 Peter 1:3 3 His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness NIV Just with these two verses my life has been changed, when times get tough I get patient and trust God to fulfill these two verses in my life. It makes it so much easier and a lot less stressful knowing He loves me that much that He has provided everything for me. I GOT THE HOOK UP :)
The question is: "Is it acceptable to repeatedly pray for the same thing?" (YES)" but there are different kinds of prayer." in the bible days the disciples of Jesus were Jews and they know how to pray religiously. After walking with Jesus for a while, they realized that Jesus didn't pray as they did. They said to the master, "Teach us to pray." There are different kinds of prayer, and it has its peculiar rules and requirements.this prayer involves making a request to God and speaking to circumstances in order to make them conform to our desire, without doubts in our hearts. In Mark 11:22-24 "Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when you pray, 'believe' that ye receive them, and ye shall have them"(Mark 11:24).Notice Jesus didn't say," when you pray, wait until you get your request before you believe." Rather, he told us to believe that we receive right at the point of praying, and we would have our request. This is faith and this kind of prayer does not permit (repetitions) Matthew 6:7-8 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking."for your father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him." Scripture references James 1:5-8 We must note this fact that we can't get what has been given to us already by God. (2 Peter 1:3)(1 Corinthians 2:12). Like the bible says in 2 Peter 1:3 According to his divine power "hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness through the knowledge of him that "hath" called us to glory and virtue: if one is praying God give me power he or she can repeatedly say it in prayer nothing will change. Because he hath given power to us already But in the other hand the prayer of petition this is the kind of prayer one can repeatedly pray for the same thing until there's a change. 1 Timothy 2:1 "I exhort therefore,that first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men" The word 'supplications' here also means 'petitions'. Another passage of scripture that talks about 'petition' is (1 John 5:14-15) (James 5:16-17AMP) the prayer of petition of Elijah was held by God in (1 Kings 18:1) God said: in Isaiah 43:26 "put me in remembrance: let us plead together: declare thou, that thou mayest be justified." God is not a forgetful God. But he want us to come to him with is word to show ourself approved unto him, And in Hosea 14:2, the bible also says, "take with you words, and turn to the lord: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips." The portion of scripture that follows below is a good example of a prayer of petition (Acts 4:24-31) (1Samuel 1:15-16:17-20) (1kings18:44-46)
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