The book is done to help its readers to learn and understand the effectiveness of prayer. The author captures the usefulness of prayers, and how prayers that are coupled with faith and worship bring one into total favour with God. This favour helps us to find the will of God for our lives. The Wonderful Weapon of Prayer reveals that in praying we must be consistent, persistent, fervent and earnest in our approach. This book reveals to us some of the promises of God after finding God's will. The book helps us to know how to pray so that we can do the work of God. It also reveals the secret of knowing how to go about doing God's will through prayer.
Finally, The Wonderful Weapon of Prayer illuminates the soul to realize that "whatever is born of God overcomes the world" since being born of God helps us to be people of a healthy personhood. Besides, we are reassured by His promises daily.
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The Wonderful Weapon of Prayer
A Practical Guide in Using Prayer as a Weapon to Unlock God's Providential Blessings Towards You
By Dalrine Jebbison-McCauley
Trafford PublishingCopyright © 2015 Dalrine Jebbison-McCauley
All rights reserved.
The Act of Prayer
Praying is an act that all individuals do—whether consciously or subconsciously, regularly or irregularly. However it is done, we all do pray sometime or the other. The big question still stands: what is prayer? The Oxford Dictionary defines prayer to be a request for help or expression of thanks made to God or to gods. Another school of thought expresses prayer to be his ultimate communication with his ultimate other or Supreme Being. This act of communication should be so structured that it brings a sense of satisfaction to both parties. Praying should be a voluntary act wherein the believer cultivates this habit freely. Prayer and praying should flow spontaneously from the believer's heart and not just from his lips.
This form of worship should not be prompted by anyone or any circumstance, even though most times it is. One may wonder why, or one may even want to conclude that prayer is a result of our situations—whether personal, family, finances, or other circumstances—that motivate us to pray. This may be so; however, our prayers should be spontaneous. They should flow lavishly from our hearts and should not be stimulated by circumstances or any prompting from other individuals.
As believers, or children of God, we must always be reminded that prayer and praying is the whole duty of man. Jesus, in one of his parables, reminds us "that man ought to pray and not to faint" (Luke 18:1). In the creation story, God made man for Himself to bring Him honor and glory, "so God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created Him; male and female He created them" (Gen. 1:27). This is evident for fellowship, for communion, and for friendship. "Let us make man in our image, after our own likeness" (Gen. 1:26). In the same sense that we know we are hungry, thirsty, naked, or weary, and supply these needs in confidence with materials and natural things, we must be confident to supply the need of prayer through praying to our God. In return, God will supply that need. As believers, we are reminded to "cry aloud, spare not; lift up your voice" (Isa. 58:1) and make our request known to our Heavenly Father (Phil. 4:6). Now when we pray in secret, our Heavenly Father, who sees and hears, will reward us openly (Matt. 6:6).
Pray from your heart, not your intelligence. Praying from your heart requires you to block out everything in your life, as well as the circumstances that crowd us. This involves destroying our mandate and surrendering totally to Jesus's mandate. We can only do this through Jesus Christ Himself and the help of the Holy Ghost as we pray and seek God's hand and his face. He will give us the ability to draw on the weapons of the spirit to cut asunder everything that seeks to inhibit our growth and progress in Him.
The act of prayer is not done to show off how excellent we are in our speech. The apostle Paul, in his address to the Corinthians, informed them that he did not come to them with excellence of speech or of wisdom, but instead, he declared, "I want to know nothing of you except Jesus and Him crucified" (1 Cor. 2:1–5). Now we all know that Paul was very learned. He studied with some of the finest scholars in Rome and with Galileo during his time. Yet he was subjected to the ultimate power of Jesus Christ. God knows our intelligence quotient. He gave it to us, so there is no need to use this to impress Him or others around us. Instead, he expects us to come to Him in sincerity. A sincere prayer is one that comes from a broken heart. It is no wonder that David wrote, "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit and a contrite heart—these, oh God, You will not despise" (Ps. 51:17).
A spirit that has no pretense is one that is looking holistically to God, and neither is an unpretentious heart trying to impress others around Him. A sincere prayer from a sincere heart will find itself in the arms and bosom of God because of the honesty that the individual puts in the prayer. A sincere prayer brings with it an air of trust and, more so, conviction to the hearers. We are reminded that "without faith, it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him" (Heb. 11:6). When we trust God with all our faith, He promises to make a covenant with us. That covenant is to "put my laws in their hearts, and in their minds I will write them" (Heb. 10:16). He further went on to say that as a result of our faith in Him and with his laws in our heart and minds, "Their sins, their lawless deeds, I will remember no more" (Heb. 10:17).
When we trust God in sincerity, we will find out that we begin to grow in Him. We will begin to experience and find a rest in Jesus, and we will move to a place where our faith becomes genuine. Similarly, Paul recalled to the remembrance of Timothy of the genuine faith that he saw in Him: "Which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also (2 Tim. 1:5). Paul further went on to encourage Timothy to stir up the faith that is within Him—not just the faith but the gifts that were given by the laying on of his hands (2 Tim. 1:6). He informed Timothy that the faith he received is attached to fear. However, Paul reassured Timothy, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love and of a sound mind" (2 Tim. 1:7). As believers, we are to engage our faith in believing God's promises for our life. We need to trust and rest in his love and power so that all trace of fear can be eradicated from our minds, and we can become empowered through Jesus Christ.
In essence, sincere faith dictates that we do not get offended nor become discouraged if we do not get the things we are asking for in prayer. Instead, we should thank Him for our present situations and for the chance "that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to His death" (Phil. 3:10).
Prayer takes preparation. Whatever we try to excel at takes much preparation. If you want to become a good teacher or counselor, then you must enroll in a university that takes much pride in teacher education or guidance and counseling so that you will get the very best preparation for your career of teaching or counseling. Similarly, if you want to become good at prayer, then you must spend much time in prayer, honing your skills in divine communication. You could say that you have to be enrolled in the spirit of the Holy Ghost.
Prayer is an act of giving yourself selflessly to God. Prayer requires giving up that time that is normally spent to do personal things and business for God. You may even have to give up time to spend with family and friends, depending on your aim. Jesus, at one time, pulled Himself away from His disciples to pray to His father in the garden of Gethsemane. He specifically told His disciples, "Sit here while I go and pray over there" (Matt. 26:36).
As you entered into prayer, it is good that you spend time in worship. Worship sets the tone for effective prayer. This opens your heart to give honor and glory to God. As much as you lift up Jesus in praise and worship, this draws you into His presence. We are reminded that "as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the son of man be lifted up" (John 3:14). Also, "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men to me" (John 12:32). Praise that flows from a heart of worship opens us to the secret of God and the acts for which He is to be praised. His words declares, "I will make mention of the Lord and the praises of the Lord, according to all that the Lord has bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of them according to the multitude of His mercies, according to the multitude of His loving kindnesses" (Isa. 63:7).
Another important step in the preparation to prayer is forgiveness. It is also recorded that "if you come to pray and you have an ought against your brother, leave your gift at the altar and make restitution before you offer up your gift" (Matt. 5:23–24). Likewise, we are encouraged to forgive through the model words of Jesus: "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you" (Matt. 6:14).
Prayer is an act of confidence in God. We are encouraged to come boldly to God; we are to approach His throne boldly. Besides, the word tells us, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Heb. 4:16). However, as we venture in prayer with confidence, you should avoid the temptation of being pompous or pious. This level of confidence in prayer is rooted and grounded in our trust in God's word and God Himself "in whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of Him" (Eph. 3:12). We must have that confidence to believe "and whatever you ask in my name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son" (John 14:1). As believers, our confidence resides in God's word. Confidence in God's word removes any doubts we have in ourselves or about our future or any situation. A wavering self-confidence or self-esteem can be reassured through our prayer and our reading of God's word. There are certain scriptures that speak specifically to affirming our personhood, such as, "You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, O Lord, you know it completely" (Ps. 139:3–4). Similarly, we are reminded of our worth in the following: "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light" (1 Pet. 2:9). When we accept the promises of God and pray them in our life, we are actually appropriating these promises through faith, and God's prefect will take effect in our life. This is reiterated in this declaration by God: "For I know the thoughts that I think towards you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope" (Jer. 29:11).CHAPTER 2
Faith and Prayer
Prayer is a mysterious weapon, but more so, prayers that are coupled with faith will create great havoc in the realm of darkness. Now, faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see (Heb. 11:1). Faith is simple; It is the ability to believe through the spirit that everything will be fine even in a very difficult situation (McCauley 2012).
"Faith begins with a deep understanding that not only does God exist, but that He cares about us" (C. Banton 2012). Faith carries many different dimensions and can be likened to that of a fruit with pegs, with each peg representing a different size and shape and a specific level of faith.
"It is by faith that we stand" (2 Cor. 1:24). We need to have so much faith in prayer, so much that we are fully convinced by God that we state, "what He had promised He was able also to perform" (Rom. 4:21). We know faith is a gift from God to those who ask and pray that we, no matter how our faith is tested by fire, will glorify Him and bring Him all the praise, honor, and glory" (1 Pet. 1:6–7). Through the word in prayer, our faith can be increased (2 Thes. 1:3–4). We need to ask Jesus for us to grow in understanding the principle of prayer and faith. Our request should be the following: "May Your word be so mixed with our faith that it will glorify Jesus" (Heb. 4:2). Besides, we must desire to grow in faith to believe that impossible things can happen when we pray. After all, Jesus said unto him, "If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth" (Mark 9:23). To increase our faith is to ask for bigger and greater things. We need to always pray in faith with no doubting. May we never be like a wave tossed by the wind because we have doubt. The Bible says: "But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways" (James 1:6–8).
So as much as we are consistent in our faith, we need to be persistent. Persistent prayers avails much in the sight of Jesus. We also know that what we may see an unanswered prayer or a prayer that we think may not be unanswered at all. It means that God is answering according to his will in his time. The Holy Spirit is persistent in his approach with man. Also, the word of God is unfailing, and God keeps his promises in his word. Even so, his judgments and percepts are perfect and we need to trust them. As we have done his will, we will receive what he has promised (Heb. 10:3–36).
Therefore, if we are persistent in our faith in prayers and we do not see answers to our prayers exactly the way we need them, we need to seek Jesus. This will help us to not allow ourselves to get discouraged and lose faith. Instead, we must trust God to answer in His way and time, and we are told that men ought to pray and not to lose heart. Instead, let us take these words in mind: "that men always ought to pray and not lose heart" (Luke 18:1). We are reminded to "continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving" (Col. 4:2).
Earnest prayers are faithful prayers to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Jesus constantly reminds us to be faithful in all we do, and so we are told, "And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not" (Gal. 6:9). Jesus constantly reminds us to be faithful for we will reap if we faint not. Faithfulness requires obedience to God and fully trusting in Him to bring all things to pass in the fullness of His time. A believer who is offering up earnest prayers to God is assured that He is with him, this is embodied in Immanuel, meaning "God with us" (Isa. 7:14). God's presence frees the believer from doubt and gives increased faith and power over all circumstances, for behold, he gives you power over all circumstances and situations, and "whatever you bind on earth is bound in heaven and whatever you loose on earth is loosed in heaven" (Matt. 18:18). Praying earnestly helps us to be "joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer" (Rom. 12:12, NIV). More so, earnest prayers help our heart to rest in peace in Jesus.
The writer of this well-known hymn wrote the following:
"Is your all on the altar of sacrifice laid? You can only be blessed and have peace and sweet rest when you heed Him your body and soul."
You have longed for sweet peace and for faith to increase. You have earnestly and fervently prayed but you can't be blessed and have peace and sweet rest until you heed him your body and soul.
So the child of God needs to yield his or her body, mind, and soul earnestly through prayers for the peace of God to reign in it. Prayers that are prayed to the Most High King with consistence, persistence, and earnestness must be followed fervently.
Fervent prayers are those prayers that are offered up with care and effort, showing an intensity of feeling toward our fellow men and God. A pure heart of obedience, truth, and sincere love are essential ingredients in fervent prayers (1 Pet. 1:22).
We need to be aware that if it seems all things have gone wrong or are going wrong, they may not be wrong at all. It may be that God is allowing these things to happen so that we can come to a place of total dependence on Him. God pushes us in our purpose so that God can accomplish His divine will in our life. For too long, many people have lived in fatalistic destinies and have forfeited their faith destinies. If they were to embrace their faith destinies, they would truly trust that. Even with every storm in their lives, there is a purpose for living. Therefore, when we pray and trust God, He will deliver us out of our storms. "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much" (James 5:16).
In praying fervent prayers from a heart of gratitude and praise, we must be knowledgeable that the enemy of our soul will not be happy with us. The enemy will load us with additional storms in our homes, school, and even our workplaces, but we must remember that we walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7). Also remember that "the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but are mighty to the pulling down of strong holds" (2 Cor. 10:4). God cares for us in our storms, and if we truly trust Him during our times of turmoil, He will carry us through every situation. Our faith begins with a deep understanding that not only does God exist, but He cares about us. Jesus asked, "Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your father knowing" (Matt. 10:29). Within the era when Jesus spoke these words, the sparrow was the commonest bird, and so they were not of much value. Likewise, a farthing was the lowest or smallest legal tender. We can compare a farthing now to be more like a cent. A cent presently has no value, so it was with the farthing to them, yet Jesus cared for both the farthing and the sparrow. He further showed how much He cared for us by declaring that the very hairs on our heads are numbered. He declared, "Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows" (Matt. 10:31). In an effort to give us an insight into our storms, the prophet Jeremiah stated, "The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying I have loved thee with an everlasting love. Therefore with loving kindness have I drawn thee" (Jer. 31:3). So take courage as even in our storms, our faithful fervent prayers give us an overcoming attitude toward fear, worry, doubt, sickness, diseases, financial and family issues. In essence, "Whatever is born of God overcomes the world" (1 John 5:4). Therefore, as we pray in all sincerity and diligence, we take an authority over our storms, and we bind them in fervent prayers. In Jesus's name, let us pray this way: "I bind (name the storm) in Jesus's name, for whatever is bound on earth is bound in heaven and released peace to that storm in Jesus's name, for whatever is loosed on earth is loosed in heaven. In Jesus's name" (Matt.18:18).
Excerpted from The Wonderful Weapon of Prayer by Dalrine Jebbison-McCauley. Copyright © 2015 Dalrine Jebbison-McCauley. Excerpted by permission of Trafford Publishing.
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Table of Contents
Chapter 1 The Act of Prayer, 1,
Chapter 2 Faith and Prayer, 7,
Chapter 3 Prayer Brings Favor, 12,
Chapter 4 Prayer, Faith, and Favor, 17,
Chapter 5 Praying to Trust God in Tough Times, 22,
Chapter 6 Praying to Know the Will of God, 26,
Chapter 7 Prayers and Works, 35,
A Prayer, 43,