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The Prayer God Will Hear

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Not always!

First, let the Scriptures explain: “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 59:1-2 Isaiah 59:1-2 1 Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: 2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
American King James Version×
).

Jesus Christ gives additional instruction: “Whenever you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by people. I assure you: They've got their reward!” (Matthew 6:5 Matthew 6:5And when you pray, you shall not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Truly I say to you, They have their reward.
American King James Version×
, HCSB).

What then must we do for God to hear our prayers?

Jesus continues: “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions [saying the same words over and over] as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words” (verses 6-7).

The Scriptures show that public prayers are appropriate in proper situations. But most of our prayers should be sincere, private conversations between just us and God.

God has promised to hear us if we sincerely approach Him in this manner, with an attitude of seeking to do His will and a willingness to allow His Word to guide and correct us. “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil” (1 Peter 3:12 1 Peter 3:12For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.
American King James Version×
).

God looks on our attitude, our heart (1 Samuel 16:7 1 Samuel 16:7But the LORD said to Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.
American King James Version×
), rather than on our past sins. He can see the direction we want to go, and that is what is important to Him.

He expects us to have faith that He hears us and to trust His judgment. “But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind” (James 1:6 James 1:6But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
American King James Version×
).

God is especially aware of our motives when we pray. If we sincerely want to do what is pleasing to Him and pray accordingly, He is delighted to hear us. He responds according to His judgment, according to what He knows is best for us.

Regrettably, not everyone prays from pure motives: “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures” (James 4:3 James 4:3You ask, and receive not, because you ask amiss, that you may consume it on your lusts.
American King James Version×
). God will not honor the requests of those who are interested only in satisfying their own desires but have no interest in pleasing Him.

Again, God looks at our attitude. He knows why we ask, and He knows what is in our hearts.

Prayer is essential in our relationship with God. Therefore, we are told, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing [habitually], in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for youc (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 16 Rejoice ever more. 17 Pray without ceasing. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
American King James Version×
). When we pray in this attitude, God will hear us.

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