I recently had a vision of an image of an ear. This added to an earlier vision God had given me made me ask Him what He was trying to communicate. When I pressed in further, I heard, "My ears are open to the prayers of My people." Well, that is not new information, Lord, I thought to myself. We all know He hears prayers, right?
King David affirmed the fact that God hears prayers when he said, "Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live" (Ps. 116:2, NIV). The apostle Paul wrote a lot about prayers, praying for people. He also said, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 4:6-7). However, perhaps what we are doing now is not praying for people or issues but talking about people and issues.
What the Holy Spirit impressed upon me was that we aren't people who are praying for people anymore. Instead, we are people who spend a lot of time commenting and posting on social media or talking and complaining amongst ourselves. However, imagine if instead of scrolling through social media or the news, posting on social media or commenting on other people's posts, we would instead spend more time in prayer. Most of us know the current state of affairs right now. We know the hot issues, as well as the issues that hit closer to home. Are we praying about these things? Are we pleading for the people who are in harm's way, in the middle of a crisis, the ones causing harm or are we simply complaining which in turn builds up anger, anxiety, resentment and frustration?
Jesus said to the disciples in Matthew 26:40b, "Couldn't you men keep watch with me for one hour?" He wasn't talking about keeping an eye out for His enemies; Jesus was talking about prayer. Jesus had retreated into the garden to pray, and the disciples fell asleep. They weren't on social media or complaining, but they did fall asleep. They knew Jesus was praying at that very moment, but that didn't compel them to pray. If the disciples couldn't manage to stay awake, what will it take to compel people to pray today?
Throughout history, many revivals began because of prayer. Not all the prayer meetings were large gatherings of people. Many of the meetings began with the earnest prayers of one person and grew into something so much larger. Communities changed and many people were led to salvation. This should inspire us.
God is always waiting to hear our prayers. Our prayers matter to Him so much they are recorded in bowls in heaven (Rev. 5:8). What kind of prayers have you deposited lately? Let this be a gentle reminder from the Lord that His ears are open, and He is waiting for the prayers of His people right this very moment.
For more on the importance of prayer, listen to this episode of The Depot Podcast on the Charisma Podcast Network.
To learn more about Erin Olson's ministry, Sandalfeet Ministries, you can visit her website at sandalfeet.org. You can also find her on Facebook at facebook.com/sandalfeet and on Instagram @erin.olson.
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