Effectual Prayers – Fire and Quest

Effectual Prayers – Fire and Quest

“Tell me, I pray thee, thy name”
Genesis 32:29

Buried within the hearts of those who know the call of God is the stirrings of the Divine seed. Emmanuel, “God with us”, must give way to “God IN us”. The rest we find in God’s providential care should propel us on in that eternal quest to know Him more.

The One who was the Emmanuel of God declared:

“Nevertheless I tell you the truth;
It is expedient for you that I go away…”
John 16:7

WHY?

Because having Jesus with us… is not to be compared to having Jesus IN US! His incarnation made it possible for Him to become our sacrifice to the end He could Dwell IN US! His Spirit could not come until Jesus was glorified (*see scripture below). His blood was shed so that we may draw near to Him “by a new and living way”! We need to begin to comprehend the enormity of the phrase “The Body of Christ” as being His church – not some pedantic building on a street corner, or an isolated, esoteric group of people. The Body of Christ is a Unified Glorious Temple, made up of living stones, each stone infused with the pulsating breath and fire of God, ONE Body in full submission to the Head who has pre-eminence overall!

“Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ Now, this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, *for as yet the Spirit had not been given because Jesus was not yet glorified.”
John 7:38-39

Jacob and Emmanuel

As astounding and magnificent is this truth of Emmanuel, “God with us”, it is only the beginning of our journey into Him. Jacob at Peniel was close to or just over 100 years old. His life had been filled with the interventions of God before Peniel. No doubt he knew well God’s call, from his mother’s own narrative, even before his birth. Throughout His wanderings, he encountered God at every turn. Though God was “with” him he understood intuitively he did not know Him who is unknowable. The evident Hand of God in his life was not in truth the Face of God; there is a vast difference between a good and providential religious experience and the experiential relationship of true-born sons.

The true passion of His Own is to know Him rather than having the satisfaction of knowing much about Him. The difference between these two is revealed in the secret place of prayer.

Alone with God

“The same night he arose and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. He took them and sent them across the stream, and everything else that he had. And Jacob was left alone.”
Genesis 32:22-24

At Peniel, Jacob was alone. He had purposely sent all those around him away as the hidden workings of God moved within Jacob toward a divine appointment with Himself. Jacob was the name given to him prophetically; it accurately described his nature, his essential self. God had another name reserved for him – Israel. This name held a deep and eternal call with repercussions that would reverberate throughout history to this very day. By necessity, what this man was by nature (Jacob), must become another (Israel) for God’s purposes to find fulfillment.

Those who know His call feel this necessity and internal cry which cannot find rest in knowing God is with them. The quest for intimacy and relationship is to apprehend His eternal purpose for them individually (Philippians 3:13). The true love of God desires union not a mere awareness of His existence.

The man Jacob would always feel a stranger with the God who over-shadowed his way. God would remain an unknown to him. The mysterious One would always be there for him but that sense of relationship would remain obscure and incomplete.

“Tell me, I pray thee, thy name”
Genesis 32:29

Love ever seeks the object of its desire. The true heart longs for a relationship that is eternal and infinite. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is a singular name. It is this Quest to know God’s Name, His Person, and His being for which Jacob inquired!

“…baptizing them in the name (not names)
of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost…”
Matthew 28:19

In the Son coming to earth He pleased and glorified the Father in a new way. And the Holy Spirit revealed the new wonders of Christ to all of creation. Even angels could not comprehend the mystery of His work in and through Christ!

“To whom it was revealed that not to themselves, but to us they ministered the same things, which now were announced to you by those having preached the gospel to you in the Holy Spirit sent from Heaven; into which things angels long to look into.”
1 Peter 1:12

The name of God (YHWH) means the “ever-becoming One”. This is the eternal truth of Himself; He is ever becoming more glorious. In everything, He is working new wonders of Himself. Each life that responds to His Call becomes an extension of His unique and living testimony which creation has never seen before. Early on, God revealed Himself through men and women just like us. Their history became part of His own name!

“Go, and gather the elders of Israel together, and say unto them, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me…”
Exodus 3:16

Yet, the God of Moses was unlike anything revealed by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. All creation was struck anew by the power of God revealed through Moses. Consider all who have gone before us. Peter, James, Paul, and Jude all brought fresh, uncompromising expressions of the ONE Triune God. Who can be satisfied in a life lived here without being a unique light and expression as were so many who have gone before us? Each one mentioned in the Book of Hebrews, though not perfect, left an indelible expression of their God. To pass our time here without consequence, without leaving a mark of His glory upon another life, is unthinkable to those who feel that passion to make Him known. When Paul asked for prayer, it was not to have his circumstances changed but that he would know the power of God to make Christ known in all boldness!

“Pray also for me, that to me may be given speech in the opening of my mouth with boldness to make known the mystery of the gospel…”
Ephesians 6:19

Those who know their God cannot refrain from proclaiming Him. The more they know Him the greater is their passion to know Him more. The unaffected, the distant ones who are content with unfulfilled promises, unfruitful and uneventful lives; feel not the passion to leave His mark in the world around them. Though God is in truth Emmanuel to many, there are those who, like Jacob, are moved by an inner desire to be “alone” with Him. These ones know the internal conflicts of their hearts; the wrestling, the struggles, and the prevailing work of God! These agonizing experiences are necessary for those who would know the fundamental and essential change from a lost and wandering Jacob to the Israel of God!

Prayer becomes the means to this life-changing relationship. Asking for things is transcended by touching the ONE in whom all provision and glory reside. He is no longer just a god; He is no longer the God of a church, a minister, or an organization. He is now GOD; your own personal Shepherd, King of kings, Lord of lords, and the sole purpose for which this life is lived.

Many may know His acts; many may know the sheer wonder of His providence. But until an individual seeks Him for Himself, He will remain shrouded in mystery and obscurity. He is good, and He will remain good to all who call upon Him. But to those who pursue Him, who desire an audience with Him, will He unveil His wonder and Person.

Prayer is the privilege
of the hungry of heart.

The hungry of heart do not depend on scheduled prayer meetings for their heart is an altar upon which the fire burns continually. Abraham did not start a fire as many must do – He brought the fire!

“And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering
and laid it on Isaac his son. And he took in his hand the fire…”
Genesis 22:6

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“And when they had lifted up their eyes,
they saw no man, save Jesus only.”
Matthew 17:8

Please Read: The Prayer of Moses

Brian Troxel

Prayer and Communion

Prayer and Communion

Prayer is simply the communion of our hearts with God. The touch of His presence brings fresh stirrings of His Own desire within our hearts; we become the altar upon which His incense burns. The closer we come to Him the more we find the Divine enablement to flow in His grace rather than relying on our own feeble efforts to pray effectually.

Travail is the precursor to new things being born in Him. Like a woman with child, the life within her is the source of travail. So also, Christ in His own, produces the cry for His New Creation to come forth in this Day.

“Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered”
Romans 8:26

True communion does not happen quickly. It involves an unfolding of hearts, a trust and a compliance on our part in order to be fully given to the will of God. His Presence is the great mystery of the universe. To enter into such a thing is a privilege beyond all others.

Our Walk and Our Prayer Life

As we grow in our sensitivity in touching these sacred places in God, we learn that our relationship with others greatly affects our relationship with Him. Unforgiveness, bitterness, pride, animosity and anger will greatly limit the true prayer of the Spirit of God within us. I cannot expect an audience with Him while I walk contrary to His ways.

“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered*
(*literally in the Greek “that your prayers be not cut off“)
1 Peter 3:7

Unforgiveness and Prayer

The deeper we go in Christ the more we find the necessity of being exercised in the grace of forgiveness. Failure to extend to others the great need of forgiveness for ourselves will result in our own prayer life lacking His presence and His unction to move in concert with His Spirit.

And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses”
Mark 11:25-26

The insensitive of heart will remain unaffected by the graces of His Holy Spirit. True, effectual prayer is proportional to our participation in the graces of His Spirit.

“Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy”

“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God”

The secret to communion with Christ is summed up in our walk; in honoring and obeying Him in our common, everyday life.

Those who obey His Word honour His Word.

“Blessed are they that do His commandments,
that they may have right to the tree of life”
Revelation 22:14

See: Effectual Prayers and Forgiveness

Brian Troxel

Discernment – Try the spirits

Spiritual Discernment – Try the spirits

“Beloved, believe not every spirit,
but try the spirits whether they are of God:
because many false prophets are gone out into the world”
1 John 4:1

The Day of God is upon us; it begins in darkness and culminates in the brightness and radiance of His Glory.

“And the evening and the morning were the… day”
Genesis 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31

The sifting of His Church has begun in earnest. There are many aspects of this great winnowing of hearts as God determinedly separates the wheat from the chaff; those who “serve the Lord” from those who serve themselves.

“Then shall ye return,
and discern between the righteous and the wicked,
between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not”
Malachi 3:18

The test of the hour is determined by our serving God, not a church, an organization, a ministry or a teaching. Serving God is a walk in vital communion with Him, where He leads us, speaks to us and we respond by the doing of His Will. The criteria for our life is determined by Him. We live to do His bidding. Our doing is not based on seeking agreement with those around us. It is in our submission to His Will alone whereby we are able to serve Him in truth. Those who seek the consensus of others will never know the joy and depth of communion and relationship with Him. The doing of His Will brings us to the “narrow way”, the way of the Cross of Christ.

Within the confines of the testing of the spirits, which so freely minister in the household of faith, the Apostle speaks to us of the necessity to discern the many voices of this hour. It is critical to note here where John speaks of testing the spirit and says “many false prophets are gone out into the world”, that we are introduced to the correlation between ministry and the spirit in which they are ministering. We must understand the point the Holy Spirit is making here. While many may think they can discern between the true and the false by an intellectual process or scriptural analysis they will actually be ill equipped to judge correctly in this Day.

John is stressing to us the necessity
to try the spirit of the expression
not just the content of it.

“Believe not every spirit…because many false prophets
are gone out into the world”

Excerpt from the Spiritual Discernment and False Prophets Part One Writing

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – George Whitefield

Quote for Today

George Whitefield - 1

“Believers keep up and maintain their walk with God by secret prayer. The spirit of grace is always accompanied with the spirit of supplication. It is the very breath of the new creature, the fan of the divine life, whereby the spark of holy fire, kindled in the soul by God, is not only kept in, but raised into a flame.”
– George Whitefield

 

Thought for Today – Psalm 34:4

Thought for Today

“I sought the Lord, and he heard me”
Psalm 34:4

Life in God is all about seeking. There is the seeking one and the One who is sought. As with every spiritual relationship there is always one who is the initiator; God being love is the initiator of all things. At the core of all relationships are a seeking and reciprocation. The flow of interaction is what deepens and intensifies the bonds of relationship. In our pursuit of Him we find the One Great Love of the universe responding within the depths and wisdom of His own being. It is the story of the Beloved and the Loved becoming one in Spirit and in Truth. The scriptures declare the wonder of this very well:

“We love him, because he first loved us”
1 John 4:19

Our seeking of Him is based upon the reciprocation of Him seeking that which was lost. The impact of His love upon the human heart is always revealed in our pursuit of Him. The Parables of Jesus reveal the intensity of this relationship from both perspectives. The Parable of the Good Shepherd is the story of Him, though unsought by us, finding and rescuing us in our lost and wayward condition. The Parable of the Pearl of Great Price is the description of us seeking Him and selling all to obtain its wonder. Those who are forgiven much love much. His creation was specifically designed to respond to and be governed by love. As a result of the fall, man was separated from the source and power of Love itself; we became slaves to the disorder of self-love, self-realization and depravity. The ongoing work of the Holy Spirit within our hearts is one of reconciliation and growth ever moving onward to full unity in Him and with one another (John 17:21-22).

Our finding of Him will always be in proportion to our seeking of Him. Entering into deeper places of abiding in Him will be in proportion to our knocking at the door of Love’s domain. Seeing of Him brings us to new and fuller experiences of repentance and change; it is impossible to see Him and remain the same. The unfolding of His person brings us to new vistas of His love for us which in turn will be reciprocated by a further depth of our love for Him. True relationships hold the mystery of eternity for within those bonds with one another there is no point of arrival. Relationships stagnate here on earth because of the impurities of pride, stubbornness, unforgiveness and a myriad of other unresolved sins in our lives.

In truly loving God we are struck with the impossibility of holding aught against our brother for this is the very measure God uses to validate our love for Him.

“In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil:
whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God,
neither he that loveth not his brother”
1 John 3:10

The validity of our seeking Him and being born of Him is revealed in the simplicity of how we live. We not only seek Him in the secret places of prayer but also in the doing of righteousness and in the substance of loving one another in truth. Love is not just a teaching it is a life of becoming more like Him.

“By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples,
if ye have love one to another”
John 13:35

Brian Troxel