When Zion travail, she brought forth (Isaiah 66:7-8) this is used to describe prayer and the idea is the pushing that happens when a woman is at delivery and what we try to say from that scripture and which we believe God is trying to say is that when you pray, there is an element of praying that pushes things into the physical; there is something about praying that makes things happen.
A man of God once said, it seems like God does nothing except a man first prays and from the scriptures Isaiah 44:26 God said that he performs the counsel of his messengers meaning that it is what we say that he does; John 14: 13-14 whatsoever you ask (demand) in my name that will I do, Isaiah 45:11 concerning the works of my hand, command ye me.
When we travail, when we command, when we push in the place of prayer, things happen and that is why it has been said over the years that a prayerful Christian is powerful Christian meaning that there is something about that getting on our knees that makes a difference.
How to P.U.S.H
If you don’t know how to, you can actually labour and become weary and you are weary simply because you don’t know how to make it happen. People would say PUSH pray until something happens and I dare say many of those who used to say all of those things do not quite understand how to push. Meaning how do I pray until something happens? One of the reasons is that a central tenet of our Christianity/Christian walk is prayer. If you are going to be a good Christian, if you are going to be a successful Christian, an efficient Christian, then you have to be one that indulges in God’s word otherwise you Christianity will actually be disappointing, it will be one that emanates a foul odor.
The reason why people are tired, discouraged, feeling let down is because they are not praying because if you would pray and pray effectively, you will have hope where there seems to be none, is that somehow within you, everything will be fine. One of the simple things that happen in the place of prayer is that you go before God with this mountain of a problem and shockingly you will discover in the presence of God, that that mountain is very minute compare to the size of your God. What happens in the place of prayer is that we begin to see things the way they really are, we know that yes we have the problem but I can see how mighty God is.
Men ought always to pray and not to faint so if men are not praying, they will faint, they will lose heart, they will be discouraged. 1 Thess 5:17 ‘pray without ceasing(stopping)‘ he want you to pray all of the time, pray about anything and everything but never stop praying. Phil 4:6 ‘be anxious for nothing but in all things through prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, make your request known to God/
The bible encourages prayer but one of the problems why people do not pray is because we do not always see immediate physical answers. The fact that we ‘pray’ and nothing happens sometimes for what we consider a long while.
When Jesus compared the story of the unjust Judge, one of the first errors you would make is to think of God as the unjust judge; that is the unjust judge sat there and would not listen; he refused to oblige the woman and after a while he said lest this woman weary me, I will do what she wants but what Jesus teaches us in Luke 18:7-8 though it seems like it’s taking long, but unlike the unjust judge, God can do it speedily.
The real problem with our pushing (praying until something happens), is that there is no faith behind our praying; we do not pray in faith Heb 11:6 ‘he that will come to God must believe that He is and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently (doing it the right way and the right time) seek him’ if we are diligent in our seeking God, then it makes it possible to seek him and find him as we should.
The real problem is our faith why? if you understand what happens when we pray then it will completely revolutionize our thinking when we get on our knees about anything. Mark 11:24 “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, Believe that you receive them and you will have them”
When do I believe that I receive them? What I have asked for, I don’t have but what I need to do is believe that I receive it when I pray. so at the very moment when I pray, God says that the way to make prayer effective and to make it work, is that every time you pray do not pray in vain, do not even rush into the place of prayer if you do not have faith at the back of your heart.
Faith is when you take God’s word back to him and you say to him what he has said because of what he has said, you believe that you receive it.
Best bible illustrations Dan 10:12-13 for those who worry about prayer and answers to prayer. All of the fasting of Daniel was not what made God to move because god moved from the first day that Daniel prayed
The real challenge that we are trying to address today is that situation whereby I pray, I do not see it immediately. What do I do?
1.When you pray God hears you and it’s done – your faith must be there. Prayer is not something we do when we have nothing else to do 1Jn 5:14-15 “Now this is the confidence that we have in him that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us”
So what when I don’t see it immediately what do I pray?
How do I keep praying until something happens? It is to pray with thanksgiving – that means you don’t keep going back asking him the same thing. I can go back to God and talk about it but what do I do? I thank him because I know he heard me and I know that I have it already.
When you keep asking the same thing over and over, it means that you have said to yourself God last time I prayed I was just talking.
Phil 4:6 – every time that matter comes to your mind, just keep thanking him
Col 4:2 –“Continue earnestly in prayer” how you keep watch in the place of prayer is with thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is what you continue to use to keep watch over the petitions that you have made before God.