Hardships and Heaven’s silence are often blamed on God, but He isn’t responsible for sin and spiritual distance. We are. Like the issues mentioned in Solomon’s prayer, our distresses begin with wrong choices and humanity that has become off-plumb with God and His holiness. Prayer re-centers us in God’s will and deals with the consequences of iniquity. Through prayer, we turn to the One who calls us by His name, the One willing to indwell our earthen temples, the One who chooses us as His habitation—though His boundless Spirit is too great to be fully contained within such small constraints. Through prayer, we solidify our connection with God, allowing Him to realign us and to render powerless the injustices perpetrated by evil.
Prayer is the pathway to forgiveness. It is the hope of restoration. It holds redemption from sin and victory over the enemy. Prayer is inclusive, linking nations arm and arm. It is the source of peace and harmony. It throws a lifeline to those affected by a fallen world. Prayer brings personal and national healing. It revives, transcending what is present to what will be.
Like Solomon’s petition, prayer begins with understanding who God is, how He is near, and what He has already done. Our need for prayer arises when we neglect this knowledge, and our effectiveness in prayer is attained through the remembrance of these things.
Real prayer starts with humility. It recognizes our failings and acknowledges our wrongs in the light of God‘s greatness, generosity, and mercy. The transition brings focus onto God‘s grace, the magnitude of His power, and the dependability of His faithfulness. The outcome is sacrifice that turns into joy.
Like Israel going back to their tents rejoicing over the temple dedication and their confidence in Solomon’s petitions, we experience the joy of restored fellowship, victory over destructive situations, and a renewed hope in the eternal when we dedicate our temple to God and take hold of the power of prayer.
Tip/Tidbit: Do you feel off-kilter? Are distressing circumstances bombarding your life? Do the threats against our nation cause you to tremble in fear? Peace lies in the power of prayer.
2 Chronicles 7:14 "if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land."