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An example of listening prayer

I believe in taking risks. When a risk has been prayed over and is God-directed, it is a form of faith. Here’s an example: This past week I was on my regular jog, which, when I’m not having random thoughts, is a venue for God and I to have a conversation. Although I write about heari…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes

I believe in taking risks. When a risk has been prayed over and is God-directed, it is a form of faith. Here’s an example:

This past week I was on my regular jog, which, when I’m not having
random thoughts, is a venue for God and I to have a conversation.

Although I write about hearing God’s voice and lead a ministry that
helps people to learn to listen to him, the hard reality is that I
often wonder about whether my thoughts are my own or something God is
saying to me. There are no formulas – struggling to encounter the divine is part of being human.

So, a thought popped into my mind as I was jogging: “Launch a contest
and give away a trip around the world to get people involved in the
World Race

Was that my own hyper-active imagination or God whispering a great idea?

I shared the idea with my team at AIM and we brainstormed a bit. Yesterday we sent out an email to our mailing list linking to this web page and this morning, dozens of people are replying.

I’ve been wrong so often in my life, I don’t take this as proof that God was speaking to me. But I’ve learned to try and give him the benefit of the doubt. I know he wants to speak to me – we’re told that over and over again in scripture (check out what Jesus says in John 10). If I don’t err on the side of faith, ultimately, I’ll fail to please God (Read Hebrews 11:6 – “without faith it is impossible to please God”).

Maybe God is speaking to you and you’ve been skeptical, discounting the thought as your own. Jesus was always pointing out the presence of faith or the lack of faith in his disciples. It’s far better to err on the side of faith – I think that’s what the Bible means when it says we should be working out our
faith with fear and trembling.

Comments (5)

  • Seth, I think that Christ speaks seriously regarding prayer about 6 or 7 times in the Gospels usually instructing someone. Below are five verses from his Final Conversation with his disciples in John chapters 12-17 where he is describing his and the Father’s purpose regarding prayer. This is a snapshot of their view on prayer.

    Christ empowers all disciples by stating in John 14,

    John 14:11-12 NASB
    “Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves. Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.

    In four additional verses, Christ instructs them regarding their authority.

    John 14:14-17 NASB
    “Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. I will ask the Father, and He
    will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.”

    John 15:7-8 NASB
    “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.”

    John 15:16 NASB
    “You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.”

    John 16:23-24 NASB
    “In that day you will not question Me about anything. Truly, truly, I say to you, if you ask the Father for anything in My name, He will give it to you. Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will
    receive, so that your joy may be made full.”

    1. Are Christ and the Father serious?
    2. Does this apply to not only disciples but also future believers? (See John 17 and Christ’s prayer for future believers)
    3. If it applies to future believers, that me, then what are the conditions?
    4. Why are there not more Believers who exhibit these characteristics?
    5. What is the main reason for the lack of “faith” that is required? (see “Rees Howells: Intercessor” for a book that described a person in the 20th century who lived out these exhortations.
    6. Do these passages only apply to spiritual issues? If yes, it would still be a very powerful witness.
    7. Where do I begin?

  • Just wonderingdo you have this banner set up so others can place it on their blogs. I can do it myself for my own blog but thought it would be awesome if others could use a sidebar version of it in their blogsI know several who would add it to theirs. And, do I have permission to use the image and link to the page from my blog?

    World Missions is such an incredible ministry and is so exciting to watchI would love to be able to join but alas, homeschooling our 3 kids is the job the Lord has placed me in and He has already given me a very different style of mission project for now. However I would love to be able to encourage others to go.

  • Seth-
    Great idea! I’m praying that God speaks to me that clearly… I will post the banner and link to Andrew’s website.

  • Bill,

    I’ll write you privately on this, but invite others to respond to the questions you’ve pose here.

Comments are closed.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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