Roadblock #3 – It’s SelfishCertainly, if your sole motivation for asking God for big things is to consume it all on yourself, then that is selfish, and that is not God.
James brings this point home in no uncertain terms when he says,
“And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong—you want only what will give you pleasure.” James 4:3 NLT
Does God want you to enjoy things in this life? Of course. He just wants them to be godly, and not all about you.
That’s why Paul says:
“Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.” 1 Timothy 6:17, 18 NIV
God wants to BLESS you so that you can BE A BLESSING.
This is clearly spelled out in the covenant God made with Abraham, which we are partakers of:
“I will make you a great nation, I will make your name great, and you shall be a blessing.” Genesis 12:2
This is what the Christians James was writing to were missing. They were all about themselves.The people James was writing to were, what we would call, “Carnal Christians”. They professed allegiance to Christ, but they were selfish and sinful. They were loving the world and yet trying to call “heaven on earth”. James calls them on it and says,
“You’re cheating on God. If all you want is your own way, flirting with the world every chance you get, you end up enemies of God and his way.” James 4:4a MSG
Wow! Enemies of God! That’s strong.Are you missing it as well? Is it all about you? Is what you are praying for pleasing to Him? If not, it might be why your prayers aren’t getting answered. BUT, He gives us hope!
James goes on to say:
“But God gives more grace, therefore He says, ‘God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ Therefore, submit to God, resist the devil, and he will free from you… Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.” James 4:6, 7, 10
God clearly wants to “lift you up”, in every area of your life. And when God lifts you up, it will be way beyond what you could do on your own! He just wants to do it in His way, and for His glory.Will you…
- Give Him your whole heart right now?
- Turn from the things the devil is tempting you with?
- Commit to being a huge blessing to those around you?
“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20
JohnP.S. It is SO AWESOME seeing so many people coming for pre-service prayer. If you haven’t come yet please join us this Sunday at 9:30 as we ask God to pour out His Spirit on our gathering. It will be a blessing to you and to your church!