“Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear” (Isaiah 59:1-2).
Sin disrupts our relationship with God. And God is not inclined to hear our prayers until we have confessed and been cleansed of our sins…Isaiah’s readers were in the habit of complaining that prayer was useless. Why pray when God seemed to be deaf to their requests? Isaiah explained that the problem was not that God was hard of hearing. He was intentionally refusing to listen to their prayers because of their unconfessed sins.
How often are our prayers thwarted (which discourages us from further praying) because of our sin-sullied hearts? We need to apply this promise: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Confession overcomes the “no purity” obstacle to prayer.
–Adapted from Prayer Coach written by James L Nicodem
Lord, I don’t want to do anything that disrupts my communion with You. Guard my life and help me to keep from sinning with my mouth, my mind or my actions. May I always quickly confess and repent from my sin. I ask You to cleanse me from my unrighteousness so that You will hear and answer my prayers.
Adore the merciful God who has given you “new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Pet. 1:3). Give thanks that you have “an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade— kept in heaven for you” (1:4). Seek God’s forgiveness as you confess times when you fail to maintain your hope. Commit yourself to seeing trials as opportunities in which your faith “may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed” (1:7). Ask God to fill you “with an inexpressible and glorious joy” (1:8-9).
The Lord says, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” (Isa. 1:18). Pray that unsaved persons will understand that God desires to forgive and that they will seek that forgiveness.
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend