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Author Topic: Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
TerryM
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Post Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
on: January 12, 2013, 15:05
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Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
By Terry Mengle 01/11/13

In the physical world the medical professions have many tools and technologies that can be used to determine a person's health and well-being. The lowly thermometer is used to tell the body's temperature. If the thermometer reads in the low range the patient may be experiencing hypothermia. If the thermometer reads in the upper range the patient is experiencing higher temperature that may indicate a fever. In an age of fascinating and breathtaking technology we tend to underrate and take for granted the simple thermometer, yet it is the first essential in telling the doctor or nurse if you are healthy or ill.

In the spiritual world of the Christian, prayer can be the equivalent of the thermometer. It can measure well-being, maturity and a healthy life in the Holy Spirit or it can indicate a life of starved, diseased, weak and dying faith. So, just how healthy is your faith and the faith of the your church today?

As the director of the Pittsburgh Prayer Network once said: “People tend to think of prayer as a candy machine, where I put the right God words in and pull the lever and God gives us the goodies.” Past surveys on prayer in our churches have shown that most pastors of churches spend on average only a few minutes of prayer per week. A 2009 Pew Research Survey of 35,000 people showed Jehovah's Witnesses (widely considered a cult) pray the most, Catholics are next in frequency with ritual prayers, and Jews pray least of the faith groups with only 26% of its members praying once a day.

It is not uncommon for pastors to call for a prayer meeting and to have only a small number of the people or no one at all showing up. It might be safe to say that prayer, the spiritual thermometer is indicating we are a people with a cold, weak and dying faith.

The Bible says the relationship between Christ and His people is like a marriage. Christ is the Bridegroom and the Church is the Bride. Earthly marriages that neglect intimate relationship and communication find that their love grows cold and the couple just fall into the routine of chores done for each other and the household. Their marriage becomes lifeless obligation. Neglecting prayer causes the Christian to perform lifeless religious duties and the faith becomes weak and loveless.

These days God's people may be talking less to God, but on the other hand, we are spending more and more time talking to each other via cellphone, e-mail, Facebook, and Twitter. The excuse for prayerlesness seems to be, “I just can't find time for prayer. I'm too busy!” Really?

If you are thinking you just don't have time-please consider the following words by E.M. Bounds, who wrote the classic, masterpiece series of books on prayer:

“Great incentives to pray are furnished in Holy Scriptures, and our Lord closes his teaching about prayer with the assurance and promise of heaven. The presence of Jesus Christ in heaven, the preparation for his saints which he is making there, and the assurance that he will come again to recive them-how all this helps the weariness of praying, strengthens its conflicts, sweetens its arduous toil! These things are the star of hope to prayer, the wiping away of its tears, the putting of the odor of heaven into the bitterness of its cry. The spirit of a pilgrim greatly facilitates praying. An earthbound, earth-satisfied spirit cannot pray. In such a heart, the flame of spiritual desire is either gone out or smoldering in the faintest glow. The wings of its faith are clipped, its eyes are filmed, its tongue silenced. But they who in unswerving faith and unceasing prayer, wait continually upon the Lord, do renew their strength, do mount up with wings as eagles, do run, and are not weary, do walk, and not faint.”

If we are essentially prayerless and are not in denial about it we need to ask ourselves: Do I still have faith in God? Do I still believe what the Word of God says in Hebrews 11:6:

“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

What does your thermometer tell you?

derekf_200-
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Post Re: Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
on: January 13, 2013, 13:41
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Thank you Terry,
For me prayer is a very personal experience. I cannot come before our Awesome God half heartily or mindlessly.
What little faith God has given me does not come into question. My quiet time is normally disrupted by hidden sin or the dross of materialism, and that is where I seek His help & mercy before continuing.
Blessings
Derek

admin
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Posts: 55
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Post Re: Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
on: January 13, 2013, 20:57
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Thank you for your strong encouragement to prayer, Terry.

What helps me the most is to start by asking the Father to forgive my weak desire (Luke 18:13), strengthen my faith (Mark 9:24), and give me more of the Spirit's work to enable me to pray (Luke 11:13). Then I remind myself of God's promises concerning prayer, like Matt 7:7-11, James 5:16-18, and Psalm 50:15.

May the Father richly bless your prayer times this week, brother.

Steve

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Posts: 309
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Post Re: Prayer: The Thermometer of Faith?
on: April 23, 2017, 19:21
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