Why Prayers Don’t Get Answered and Life Doesn’t Change

The Short answer: You have separated yourself from God.

Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear. Isaiah 59:1-2blessings-denied-01

At this time of year, we are all filled with words of wisdom, predictions are made and resolutions are abundant.  But, it is also the time of year when we are waiting for the many prayers of the year to be answered. The declarations made a year ago about this current year don’t seem to have reached heaven; why?

Know that there is an answer to every prayer. It is either YES, NO, or NOT NOW.  But, as the text above states, there are things you may be doing that are causing  your petitions to go unheard, things within your control.

We are a stubborn people, we want what we want, when we want it, but God is the only one who truly knows what is best for us. After all, he created us and knows us better than we know ourselves.

Know that God loves YOU but he hates sin –God loves you, and WANTS to hear you. Jeremiah 31:3 says that God has loved you with an everlasting [unending, eternal, immovable ] love. That depth of love is a love that desires for you to be safe, healthy, and prosperous, but he hates sin.  Don’t think that others are better than you, or have it all together and that is somehow the reason for their blessings; none of us is sinless (Romans 3:23 “all have sinned…”).   How and when God blesses someone else has nothing to do with you.  God wants ALL of us to share eternity with him, and so he will bless the just and the unjust (Matthew 5:45). Don’t compare yourself to anyone else.

Repent and be saved – Turn your eyes inward.  What careless words or actions have gone unrepentant?  Are you given to gossip and backbiting?  Is your pride or self-righteousness getting in the way? Maybe there is something you knew you should have done and didn’t; instead you swept it under the rug or justified your inaction as being right in your own eyes… maybe you haven’t forgiven yourself for something…   We all love the Bible when it tells of goodness and light, blessings, prosperity, and the fall of our enemies; we get anxious when people suggest we are blocking our own blessings.

I don’t know what’s keeping your blessings from manifesting in your life.  All I can do is encourage you to pray to the Lord for revelation. Ask him to show you those things that you cannot put your finger on. God is very good at showing me where I messed up. Repent of your sin, and accept forgiveness.  What is done, is done. God will meet you where you are NOW, and guide you into the future, no matter what you have done in the past. God will turn his ear to you and send help, (2  Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, called by my name, would humble themselves and pray…”). 

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Don’t wait another day. Accept Christ as your Lord and Savior. Acknowledge him as the risen Lord, born of a Virgin. Admit that you are a sinner and cannot do this life without him.  Ask him to come into your heart and turn things around in your life. I can’t promise that everything is always going to make sense, or be easy, but I can promise that you will never be wrong for believing in the assurance of answered prayer, forgiveness, victory over sin, guidance, and salvation.  Start reading your Bible today, get into a Bible teaching church, and let God turn your heart ache into hallelujahs!

 

Be good, be gracious, and be a blessing to someone today!

Shaunna

http://www.speakministries.org

Stop Defending Yourself!

This post is your official authorization to stop defending yesterday and stop defending the truth!   There is nothing you or anyone else can do about days gone by, and if you know the truth about something and someone is trying to make a case against you, stand firm; the truth needs no defense. If you are the one trying to make someone pay for something over and over because YOU can’t get over it…get over it. In the end, there is NOTHING to be gained by making someone feel bad, or threatening to expose someone else’s dirt (especially if it is linked to your own). I am praying for us all, the oppressed and the oppressors to let go, and move on.

Let God fight for you instead.
Let God fight for you instead.

Someone recently told me, (in self-defense), that grace keeps records of wrong – LAUGH OUT LOUD! No It Doesn’t! That statement and thought contradict grace altogether. The only reason people collect offenses and wrong doings is so they have something to bring up against another in the future should they themselves come under scrutiny or attack; it is intended to hurt someone in the future.

The Word of God says, “My grace is sufficient for you,” 2 Corinthians 12:9. If grace keeps records of wrongs for the purpose of holding them against me at a later date, God’s grace is not good enough for me, meaning God in all his glory is not good enough for me; I don’t want any part of that kind of grace. God’s grace is not sneaky and conniving, wicked or oppressive. Grace says, I’m not going to remember, and I’m not going to mention it again or talk about things I never witnessed and really know nothing out.” Fortunately, the God kind of grace does not work alone, it comes with mercy. Mercy says, “I’m not going to make you pay over and over for whatever yesterday was.”   The Word of God also promises new mercies every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). Remember that as believers, our strength and purpose are in CHRIST, not any man or woman. GOD already chose grace and mercy for you – a clean slate, and he will turn your situation around for your good, in the name of Jesus! Walk in HIS truth, it’s the only word that matters.

You don’t have to keep answering for yesterday, and you are not alone in trying to escape the person who can’t let yesterday go. I too know people who like to collect offenses and bits and pieces of truths to weave lies and accusations. What you are experiencing is not unique to you. There are many people, insecure, immature people whose only defense is to dig up yesterday and create tall tales; they create stories that they eventually convince themselves are true (and just happened) to make themselves feel better. Before you get too comfortable agreeing with me, remember that God loves them too, and wants what is best for them too. Pray for them instead of defending yourself against them. God will fight for you while you keep quiet. (Exodus 14:14 – “The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace”).

And let me tell you, if someone is using the past to somehow manipulate or control you, disguised as love and good intentions, or as some twisted attempt to change you into the person THEY desire, that person is not seeking good for you. Anyone who purposely sets out to hurt you tomorrow, or at some undefined point in the future is not your friend and does not mean well; LOVE DOES NOT KEEP RECORDS OF WRONGS!  Keep praying, God will either move you, or move in the situation. Consequently, If you know you did something you shouldn’t have done, own it; repent, and move on. You don’t have to keep apologizing or defending yourself over and over. Your life doesn’t end just because you get misguided, or tempted, or distracted, or even disinterested. Get back on track, forgive and keep going in the direction of YOUR purpose. The enemy wants you to be hung up on things of old, that is how he intends to infect your mind with sadness, regret, and depression, etc. to control your next moves. Ask God to help you forgive, and to help that person forget yesterday and release the desire to keep you in bondage with tangled realities, and their own unforgiveness.

Lastly, stop defending the truth. If you know the truth of a matter concerning you, and someone is determined to make it a lie, you have nothing to worry about; the truth stands even if no one believes it. It is the spirit of guilt and regret that spends its time with blaming and shaming. Some people are so determined to keep focus off their own faults and issues, that they will do anything and everything to transfer the focus onto someone else; pray for them, and keep moving! If that is you, pray for yourself and I will be praying for you too.

  • Let God order your steps.
  • Pray consistently for change.
  • Just be quiet.
  • Observe.
  • Seek to understand.
  • Tell your side only to those who are godly enough to ask and listen in good faith.

All will be well with us, in the name of Jesus!

Peace be unto you!

 

Shaunna J.

Shaunna is an inspirational author and currently serves as the Pastor of RCCG Grace Chapel in Waldorf, MD. She writes to encourage, enlighten, and empower nations to embrace the word of God as their standard of living to live in peace and victory. More from Shaunna at SPEAK Ministries.

Is Your Struggle Beyond Your ABILITY to Pray?

iH3_QIEMPhilippians 4:6; “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

We go through a lot of things in life; we meet a lot of challenges, and face many disappointments. We chase after the wrong things and find ourselves on the wrong side of progress…  Welcome to the human experience! There is not one among us who isn’t going to be angered, disappointed, cheated, wronged, overlooked or is going to do everything right.

So, you are going through somethings right now; I want you to answer the question I asked above, is your circumstance beyond your ability to pray?

I am not asking is it beyond your desire to pray. The truth is, nothing is beyond your ABILITY to pray unless you are not alive. If you can talk about your situation, or cry about it, or worry about it, you can pray about it.

God does really hear every prayer, and receives every praise. No matter what your life looks like right now do those two things, PRAY AND PRAISE. Even if your prayer is, “God, I don’t know how to pray,” he understands that. That’s where the Holy Spirit comes in and helps out.   When you are at your wits end, when you are burned out, bitter, tired of dead ends, when none of your words are right, the Holy Spirit has the right words, and the right answer- PRAY for help. When nothing about going forward seems worth it, PRAY. God will help you see value in your circumstance, if even to just draw YOU closer to him. God never wastes a struggle. Sometimes the solution to the problem we face, is the change God is trying to make in US, not someone or something else. (That revelation made me pause for a second too!)

There is nothing too hard for God, not even your situation. There is no problem too big for God, not even yours, but while you are sitting there trying to figure out how things went so wrong, or why you cant seem to create the change you want to see, remember that the change, the blessing, the breakthrough, the elevation and promotion come AFTER you pray. It is not your job to change people. It is not your business to hold all the answers. It will never be up to you to control all things. It IS up to you to PRAY if you want true victory in your situation. The God of Armies (Jehovah Sabaoth), the God who desires to fight for you, wants to hear from you today. He is a healer, he is a helper, he is a peacemaker, he is a provider, he is a protector, he is a way maker, he is a burden lifter, he is a yoke destroyer…Yes, there IS power in the name JESUS to break every chain!

Will you stop now and pray?

Let Your Words Be Few

Portrait of man with mouth covered with tape

Can’t determine what words are right or wrong,  necessary or destructive?

It’s okay to just be quiet.

Sometimes victory comes in your silence.

(Lord, have mercy, and give us grace for self-control).

Ask the Lord for the appropriate words if you don’t have them,

and the grace to be quiet until you do.

(Lord, let our words be your words, and our thoughts your thoughts).

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” Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God.

For God is in Heaven, and you on earth;

therefore let your words be few.” Ecclesiastes 5:2

January Prayer Points

RCCG LogoHappy New Year!  Thank you so much for helping me blog through 2012.  Your presence and feedback are helpful and encouraging.  As the Lord works his Will through me, I hope to bring more insight and encouragement as this year unfolds.

Let us start the year off right…in prayer! We have much to be thankful for, and much to expect from God this year if we stay focused on him and obedient to his Word.  As you pray let the Spirit flow freely.  These points were specific to New Year’s Eve Service, but use them as a guide to pray through the month. God will bless you as you seek him!

 

(RCCG Prayer Points Cross Over Night Service Into 2013 BY Pastor E. A. Adeboye)

1. Praise Him for what he has done in the past, worship him for who he is, the Sovereign God, the God of Signs and Wonders, thank him that the devil has lost his battle over you.

2. Father, please forgive me for cheating you in the past; in tithe and offering, in giving you my first fruit, in witnessing, I will repent and restitute.

3. Father, this year I will honor you and put you first in all things, therefore, bless me beyond measure.

4. Father this year, I will obey you to the letter, therefore answer all my prayers by fire.

5. Father, I will bless your servant continuously, let my cup of blessings overflow.

6. Father, I will spend more time with you this year, let my joy be full and my testimonies be complete.

7. Father, don’t let me ever know a dry season again in my life, in my finances, in every facet of my life.

8. Pray for those who are precious to you that this will be a happy new year for them.

9. Please pray for the General Overseer, wish him whatever you wish yourself

10. Your Special Request.

Be Free!!

This message is so crisp! Friends, now is the time of salvation. Choose a life of freedom and peace. Christ died for you, he loves you and wants you to be with him eternally in Heaven. The pains, frustrations, and burdens in life only get worse in a life of sin. Repent today. Ask Christ to be your Savior, confess him as the risen Lord. He will hear you, and he will save you.

freedom

 

5 Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you.

2-3 I am emphatic about this. The moment any one of you submits to circumcision or any other rule-keeping system, at that same moment Christ’s hard-won gift of freedom is squandered. I repeat my warning: The person who accepts the ways of circumcision trades all the advantages of the free life in Christ for the obligations of the slave life of the law.

4-6 I suspect you would never intend this, but this is what happens. When you attempt to live by your own religious plans and projects, you are cut off from Christ, you fall out of grace. Meanwhile we expectantly wait for a satisfying relationship with the Spirit. For in Christ, neither our most conscientious religion nor disregard of religion amounts to anything. What matters is something far more interior: faith expressed in love.

7-10 You were running superbly! Who cut in on you, deflecting you from the true course of obedience? This detour doesn’t come from the One who called you into the race in the first place. And please don’t toss this off as insignificant. It only takes a minute amount of yeast, you know, to permeate an entire loaf of bread. Deep down, the Master has given me confidence that you will not defect. But the one who is upsetting you, whoever he is, will bear the divine judgment.

11-12 As for the rumor that I continue to preach the ways of circumcision (as I did in those pre-Damascus Road days), that is absurd. Why would I still be persecuted, then? If I were preaching that old message, no one would be offended if I mentioned the Cross now and then—it would be so watered-down it wouldn’t matter one way or the other. Why don’t these agitators, obsessive as they are about circumcision, go all the way and castrate themselves!

13-15 It is absolutely clear that God has called you to a free life. Just make sure that you don’t use this freedom as an excuse to do whatever you want to do and destroy your freedom. Rather, use your freedom to serve one another in love; that’s how freedom grows. For everything we know about God’s Word is summed up in a single sentence: Love others as you love yourself. That’s an act of true freedom. If you bite and ravage each other, watch out—in no time at all you will be annihilating each other, and where will your precious freedom be then?

16-18 My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness. For there is a root of sinful self-interest in us that is at odds with a free spirit, just as the free spirit is incompatible with selfishness. These two ways of life are antithetical, so that you cannot live at times one way and at times another way according to how you feel on any given day. Why don’t you choose to be led by the Spirit and so escape the erratic compulsions of a law-dominated existence?

19-21 It is obvious what kind of life develops out of trying to get your own way all the time: repetitive, loveless, cheap sex; a stinking accumulation of mental and emotional garbage; frenzied and joyless grabs for happiness; trinket gods; magic-show religion; paranoid loneliness; cutthroat competition; all-consuming-yet-never-satisfied wants; a brutal temper; an impotence to love or be loved; divided homes and divided lives; small-minded and lopsided pursuits; the vicious habit of depersonalizing everyone into a rival; uncontrolled and uncontrollable addictions; ugly parodies of community. I could go on.

This isn’t the first time I have warned you, you know. If you use your freedom this way, you will not inherit God’s kingdom.

22-23 But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.

23-24 Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.

25-26 Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.

[Taken from the Message Bible]

Got Guilt?

 

 

Got Guilt?

 

 

King David was a guilty man. He was an adulterer, a murderer…yet he was still given the benefit of forgiveness. You too can experience the great comfort of forgiveness when you:

 

 

  1. Stop denying your guilt and recognize your sin
  2. Admit your guilt to God and ask for forgiveness
  3. Surrender your guilt and believe that you have been forgiven

 

 

Letting go, and letting yourself off the hook can be hard, especially when the sin is deeply rooted and involves other people.  Remember that Christ is not only able to forgive you, but he is willing.  There is nothing so special about you that the magnitude of your sins cannot be forgiven.

 

 

God is so much bigger than whatever you can remember. He is bigger than your insecurity, and stronger than your sensitive conscience.   First John (1:9) says, if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

 

 

Confess your sins before the Lord today; it’s time to let go. Stop holding on to the past mistakes you have made. Your self torture is only preventing your progression. We have all made mistakes. Sin is sin, no matter how minor or great we see it in our minds; all of us are guilty.

 

God loves you, and wants you to be of sound mind. He wants you to be free of the chains with which you are keeping yourself bound. Choose a life of freedom, choose joy; choose forgiveness.