James 4:2 – You desire to have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive because you ask wrongly, to spend it upon your passion. (ESV)
Frustration can easily take hold of a person when it appears that desires and wants are often delayed or withheld. The frustration can graduate to the point of killing, fighting and quarreling to have. For some the frustration of not having what they want can degenerate to a state of atheism. They lose hope and belief in the fact that God exist or perhaps if He does, He is partial or selective in the distribution of resources. Such people fail to understand that God is not in the habit of responding to emotions, afflictions or frustration but will only respond to your effectual communication. ‘You do not have because you do not ask’. Another form of Frustration can stem from the fact that one ask and still does not receive because of wrong approach or wrong communication. So it goes beyond just asking but asking correctly and with the right motive in mind.
Becoming a prayer champion means gaining mastery in the act of asking and receiving. There is indeed a wrong way to ask otherwise why does one ask and still do not have according to the above scripture in James. Therefore, becoming a prayer champion is not an attribute that comes with salvation but it is consciously acquired through skill acquisition, learning, practicing and prevailing in prayer not just once but to the point of gaining mastery. A champion is not a person that fought and won a battle but one that fights and wins battles continually. This requires training and skill acquisition. Until you are thought or trained, you cannot triumph. Skill is a fundamental requirement in any human endeavour, you need to be trained for you to reign and this was what Jesus’ disciples realized when they asked him in Luke 11:1
And it came to pass, that as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, Lord teach us how to pray as John taught his disciples.. Luke 11:1b.
I guess this disciple must have noticed the kind of victory that Jesus commands when he prays compared to when they pray. Perhaps he also noticed that John’s disciples prayed in a particular way that commands heavens attention and he concluded that there was something about the way they prayed and the way Jesus prayed that needs to be learnt if really they desire to command the same result. Many have always thought that one doesn’t need to learn to pray; that you just simply learn to pray by praying. This is a wrong assumption otherwise John and even Jesus wouldn’t have taken the pain to teach their disciples how to pray. Jesus did not say their request was useless but he took time to teach them. Likewise we also need to learn how to pray in order to reign as champions. Mind you, the effectiveness of a prayer is not in the length but in the quality of the prayer and you need knowledge to pray correctly.
HOW TO PRAY…Our father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as in heaven….. Luke 11:2
This is a model prayer approach taught by the master. I feel Jesus telling them ‘this is the pattern I use when I pray and if you follow this pattern, you will equally become a champion in prayer. Now let’s break it down.
‘Our father who art in heaven’ connotes an existing relationship with the father. This is a very vital element that must be in place before your prayer call can be received. When Jesus was explaining the principle of asking and receiving in Matt 7:7, He compared it with a father and son relationship, emphasizing the importance of this connection. Your father is under obligation to listen and attend to your need and we enter such relationship with God when we become born again.
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the spirit of adoption whereby we cry Abba father. Rom 5:15
For further Study
Romans 5:5, John 16:23,
Personal declaration for the day
From today, I will approach God as my father
Questions for you to reflect on
Do you know how much change prayer can bring about?
What is the opposite of prayer ?