01/12

Preparation for Power

“…He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.” Luke 5:16

In Mark 1:35 the Bible says He prayed early in the morning. In Luke 6:12, we read where Jesus prayed through the night. In Luke 5:16 it says that Jesus would often withdraw from people to pray. When we pray, we are doing more than saying prayers. When we pray we are shutting out the natural world around us, and we are giving our attention to God and to spiritual matters through our spirit, our heart. When we are spiritually attentive, we make ourselves available to God for His use and to receive from His power in the spirit. When we pull away from the world to pray, we are positioning our self in actual spiritual reliance. Our motive for spending time, much time, in the spirit, is our love for God. One purpose for pursuing God in the spirit is to receive from God so that we can accomplish what it is that God wants to do.

If we do not pray like Jesus prayed, if we do not pull away from the world and get close to the Father through spiritual means, then how do we think we will ever move in the power we are promised in the Word? Jesus was the Son of God, but He relied on the Holy Spirit’s power. We must do the same. “(15)…great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities. (16) So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.” Luke 5:15-16

Jesus knew people were coming to Him for their miracle, so He made sure He was ready for them by spending time with God in the spirit. There was a time when the disciples had not adequately prepared for ministry. In Matthew 17 we read where a man told Jesus the disciples were not able to cast a tormenting spirit out of his son. Jesus effectively cast out the spirit. Later, Jesus privately told the disciples why they were unable to cast out the spirit. He said, “This kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting” Matthew 17:21.” It required time in the spirit with God. This is how we prepare to receive and minister the power of God. In Acts 6:1-4, the church needed people to take time to see that widows were being cared for. The church leaders found volunteers to take care of this ministry for one reason. In verse 4 it says, “We will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the Word.” Everyone should take time with God, especially church leaders. The disciples knew they could not be pulled away from spending time in the spirit. This is why prayer is important – not just to make requests known to God, but also to be prepared for what God wants to do.

Application: Set significant time where you can pull away from everything and everyone. Worship, pray, and get in the Word. Pursue God with your spirit, and the (James 4:8).

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