It is often said that “Prayer changes things!” We should also add, “Prayer changes us!” It is true that your prayers will change things around you but sometimes your prayers change you. At times our situation even remains the same; but we are different.
The disciples in Acts 4, were threatened and warned not to speak or preach in the name of Jesus. They did not react by going to God in prayer pleading, “Lord change things! Lord, change our circumstances.” Rather, they asked the Lord to “…grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word…” (Acts 4:29) Their attitude was, “Do not change our circumstances; change us!”
“For things to get better, sometimes you must get better.”
We may change our circumstances and even seek a more favorable environment but we will take ourselves with us wherever we go. Jesus asked us to “consider the lilies (flowers)” in Matthew 6:28. These flowers grow where they are planted. Many of us refuse to grow where we are placed and because of that we never take root anywhere. Instead we want to be planted in a better set of circumstances. One man said, “I have found the problem and it is I.”
There are things in all of our lives that must die through prayer, fasting, and submission to the Lord Jesus Christ.
“It is not so important what happens to us; it is more important what happens in us.”
The Psalmist David wrote “The Penitent’s Psalm” of Psalm 51. This Psalm was written after Nathan, the prophet came to David revealing his sin of adultery with Bathsheba, and the murder of her husband. (II Samuel 12:1-13) David did not ask for a change in his circumstances but cried out “Lord, change me!” Read about this in Psalm 51:1-19. He prayed for a clean heart, and a right spirit. He knew that “a broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart…” (51:17) were necessary for the Lord to make a change in him. David basically prayed, “Lord, I have sinned against you! Clean me up! Change me so that I can be a blessing to your people.” This attitude was quite different from that expressed by Saul. When he sinned, he said,“…I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel…” (I Samuel 15:30) He was not interested in a real change in his life through repentance. He was more interested in how he appeared before the people.
Prayer allows us to become like Jesus. It is spending time with Jesus, our friend. It is said,“You show me your friends and I will tell you who you are.” The type of friends we have serve as a good indicator of who we are. Jesus promised to be a friend that “…sticketh closer than a brother.”(Proverbs 18:24) In prayer, we are trying to not only know Him but also become more like Him. The Bible teaches, “Everything reproduces after its own kind.” (See Genesis 1:24) God expects us “…to be conformed to the image of His Son.” (Romans 8:29) He accepts you as you are but will not leave you there. He wants you to be changed.
“It is important to remember that we cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.” – Max Depree in Leadership is an Art
Our salvation experience begins with repentance. Through obedience to Acts 2:38, God changes us with a born again experience and transforms (changes) our destiny.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (II Corinthians 5:17)
Prayer changes things! Prayer changes us!
Lord, Let Prayer Change Me!