Prayer that Shakes the Foundation

Acts 16:25-34

by Pastor Mark Misomali

Introduction
Foundation is the basis, origin or introduction. Usually it is strong, captivating. When an introduction is not understood a wrong conclusion can be made. Some people have abandoned to buy a book because the introduction was not captivating. Many problems faced by Christians do not completely go away even after prayer because the foundation is not shaken. You can cut a tree and it disappears for two months but may resurface if the root was not removed. We still see slabs/concrete floors of some houses that were demolished several years back. Some Christian life shows certain features of the “old” life because the foundation of the “old life” was not demolished. What is the foundation of your marriage, job, ministry, and calling?

How do you know the foundation?
The answer is simple, prayer. Most problems originate in the spiritual and are manifested in the physical. The bible says in John 12:31 that Satan is a god of this world. No wonder the world is infested with diseases, wars, enmity. Though we live here, as Christians, we are not of the world. Jesus chose us out of the world – John 15:19. It is God’s desire that His will be done on earth. This is to say that although Satan is a god of this world, God wants you and me to make him a non-factor. Prayer takes you from this world to the spirit realm. When Jesus taught the disciples to pray “your will be done…as in heaven” he knew that in heaven there are better and perfect things. These better things cannot be fulfilled if we do not pray. Prayer is an opportunity which has been underutilized. People waste time because they don’t know prayer. Paul and Silas did not waste time. They could have thought of climbing the walls but did something better, prayer. In a day man comes up with many ideas/thoughts. Most of the thoughts of God remain hidden until we pray.

Strategy
I want to list three strategies which Paul and Silas used:-
1. They believed prayer was greater than chains as a result they ignored their feelings, circumstances, and tiredness. All they could sense was God. Many Christians are lazy and come up with many excuses for not praying.
2. They were determined. Other prisoners heard them but did not join them. If you only wait for church program to pray you mare missing a lot prayer can offer.
3. They understood their position in God. They knew they had no power but relied on God. When the problem is big for you it is not big for God – 1 John 4:4.

Results
1. All doors opened. When you pray, other subsidiary problems also go; your neighbour may be saved. Other prisoners benefited although they did not pray
2. The will of God was established. Some Christians make conclusion without prayer. If Paul and Silas had not prayed, they could think their imprisonment was part of discipline by God. Certain things which happen in our nations are not the will of God. We don’t have to blame politicians or Government, the Lord left believers a duty … I send you (believer). You can make a difference when you pray.
3. There was a paradigm shift. From verse 30, Paul is now being referred to as “Lord”, what a mighty God we serve! From prisoner to Lord! In verses 33 to 34 prisoners wounds are washed, gave them food. It is about time your adversary start serving you! You who are divorced, your spouses will start looking for you, the despised, job losers, God is about to turn things around and your job will be chasing you. When you pray you touch into an anointing that cannot be denied. The prison was infested with the presence of God. It is high time to infest schools, market places, homes with His presence through prayer.

Conclusion
Prayer is the easiest, closet forum with God. It can be done anytime, anywhere by anyone. May be they could not allow Paul and Silas to bring bibles to the prison but one thing they could not restrict was prayer. You can not arrest prayer. May be your boss, your spouse does not allow you to practice Christianity, I have good news for you, while they do that engage in silent prayer and doors will open. You do not have to be literate in order to pray. Sermons can be heard from radio, TV etc but there is no substitute for prayer. Prayer is a command Luke 21: 36 and Paul emphasized it in 1 Thes 5:17. Disobedience to God’s command is sin. The devil knows the power of prayer, which is why he can assist you in finding excuses for not praying.

God bless you

Mark Misomali
Senior Pastor, Family Christian Church, Lilongwe, Malawi

The Power of Prayer

by Pat Gray

“The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available (dynamic in its working)”. (James 5:16 AMP)

Prayer is communicating with God, talking to Him and listening to Him. Prayer brings us into God’s presence. He wants to have unbroken fellowship with us. That’s why He tells us in His Word to pray continually. We can pray on the go, but we must get quiet and spend quality time in His presence to hear His voice. We need to set apart a specific time daily to spend alone with God. Fellowship with Him brings us into a love relationship with our heavenly Father. Prayer will keep us close to God. We draw near to Him through prayer. He promised that He will draw near to us when we draw near to Him. We can live in an attitude of prayer, constantly being in communion and fellowship with our heavenly Father every hour of the day.

The number one rule in praying to get results is to pray in line with God’s Word. God’s Word is His will for our lives. The Word of God contains the answer to every problem that could confront us. We find the answer to our problem, then take it to God in prayer. When we pray according to His will, He hears us and answers our prayers. When we believe God’s Word and pray in line with His Word, we can expect our prayers to be answered.

The next step to praying effectively is to pray in faith. Jesus said, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” (Mark 11:24 NIV) We have to believe we receive when we pray. God said in His Word that He has given to every believer the measure of faith. We must develop that faith by spending time in the Word of God. The key to success in prayer is expecting results. We must believe that His power went to work the moment we prayed in faith. Praying in faith is merely having confidence in God’s willingness to use His power to answer our prayers. Once we have prayed in faith, we must stand our ground until the manifestation comes. Stand firm on the Word and believe God for results. Hold fast to your confession of faith. Our confession life should line up with our prayer life.
We should always pray to the Father in Jesus’ name. Jesus said that His Father would grant whatever we ask when we ask in His name. When we pray in Jesus’ name, we immediately get God’s attention. Jesus is the name that is above every name. When we pray in Jesus’ name, according to the Word in faith, God will quickly respond to us.

Unforgiveness is a huge hindrance to having our prayers answered. Jesus said if we do not forgive men their sins, our Father will not forgive our sins. Jesus said, “When you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” (Mark 2:25 AMP) When we have been hurt, we should run to God. We should ask Him to make things right as we forgive and remain in His love. Ask Him for comfort and healing. We must walk in love and forgiveness to have our prayers answered.

We should close all our prayer times with thanksgiving. If we truly believe that we received when we prayed, then we will start thanking God. We should thank Him continually while we are waiting for the manifestation of the answers to our prayers. We should thank God for what we don’t see yet because we believe it is already done.
Continue in fellowship with God. He created us to fellowship with Him. The more we fellowship with God, the more we know that He is for us. He wants to use His power on our behalf.

Prayer is a necessity. We will never get to the place where we don’t need God. We are desperate for Him whether we know it or not. To know Him more and more intimately should be our greatest desire.

Prayer is the doorway into the mightiest release of power that is known to man. Stay connected to God through prayer and obedience so that He can bring His will to pass in your life.

Pray this:
“Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me the confidence that what You have promised, You will do. Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for the faith You have given me. Help me to believe I receive when I pray and to hold fast to my confession of faith until You bring it to pass.
“In Jesus Name, Amen.”