This is going to be long, but bear with me; I hope you find it worthy.
I have been reading Prayer, Life’s Limitless Reach by Jack Taylor (spiritual father to Heartland Assembly of God in Ankeny, Iowa) an incredible man of God. The chapter “Preparation for Personal Prayer” has so touched my heart. It goes to the matter of “fervent prayer” and how we must work at our relationship with our Heavenly Father to prepare the way for awesome, fervent prayer. (Just as in our human relationships, it does take honesty and our time.) Most of us know the following, but this serves as a summary of all we know as well as a reminder. Let this also serve as a revival and a spiritual awakening. We need a clear heart to accomplish fervent prayer and a pleasing relationship with our Father.
Read the Scripture first, ask yourself the question posed and give a truthful yes or no:
1. Matthew 6:12,14,15 (Forgiveness) Do you hate, begrudge, harbor resentment, jealousy. Do you have any wrong attitude toward anyone?
2. Matthew 6:33 (Seek first the Kingdom of God) Is there anything in which you have failed to put God first? Does ANYTHING interfere?
3. Mark 16:15 (Preach the Gospel to every …) Do you consistently seek the lost for Christ? Does your mouth and life shine as a testimony?
4. John 13:35 (All will know by your love) Are you secretly annoyed over the accomplishments of others? Are you a partaker in any divisions? Do you think anyone deserves any misfortune? Do you quarrel and argue? Is there anyone you deliberately slight?
5. Acts 20:35 (It is more blessed to give then to receive) Have you robbed God of His due in time, talents and money?
6. 1 Corinthians 4:2 (Required in stewards that one be found faithful) Do your emotions get stirred for the Lord, then you do nothing about it?
7. 1 Corinthians 6:19,20 (Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, bought with a price) Are you careless with your body? Do you overindulge in eating, drinking or any habit that is defiling your body?
8. 1 Corinthians 10:31 (Do ALL to the glory of God) Do you take the credit for anything good you have done vs. glorifying God for it? Are your statements mostly “I”. Do you talk about things you have done vs. what God has done for you? Are your feelings easily hurt? Have you made a pretense of being something that you are not?
9. Ephesians 3:20 (God is the power working in us) Are you Christ-conscious? Do you let your feeling of inadequacy or inferiority keep you from attempting things you should in serving God?
10. Ephesians 4:28 (Labor and give to others in need) Do you underpay? Are you careless in the payment of debt (financial or otherwise)? Are you a time waster for yourself and for others? Trying to get by as cheaply as you can?
11. Ephesians 4:31 (Bitterness, wrath, anger … be put away from you) Do you complain? Are you a fault-finder? Do you have a critical attitude toward people or things? Impatient? Harsh? Unkind? Irritable? Cranky? Do you have hidden anger?
12. Ephesians 5:16 (Redeeming the time, because the days are evil) What type of radio, TV, movies, books, internet, magazines do you do? Are you doing anything that shows you are not satisfied with the Lord Jesus Christ?
13. Ephesians 5:20 (Give thanks) Do you thank God for all things, good and bad? Do you worry? Do you doubt His Word? Is your Spiritual temperament based on feelings rather than on Biblical facts?
14. Philippians 1:21 (To live is Christ, to die is gain) Does anything mean more to you then living for and pleasing Christ? Do the cares of this life overwhelm you? Are you joyful over things rather than the Lord and His Word?
15. Philippians 2:14 (Do all things without complaining or disputing) Do you gossip? Do you try to hurt someone through word or deed? Do you carry prejudice against true Christians because they are of some different group then yours, or because they don’t see everything exactly like you?
16. Philippians 4:4 (Rejoice in the Lord always) Have you neglected to be pleasing to Him in all things? Do you carry any bitterness toward God? Have you been dissatisfied with His provision for you?
17. Colossians 3:9 (Do not lie to one another) Do you engage in meaningless talk? Do you lie? Do you exaggerate? Cheat? Steal? Overcharge?
18. 2 Timothy 2:22 (Pursue righteousness) Do you lust in any way?
19. Hebrews 10:25 (Exhortation) Do you have daily or private prayer? Have you neglected thanksgiving at meals? Have you neglected daily family devotions? Gathering together for worship and prayer?
20. Hebrews 13:7 (Remember those who rule over you) Do you in any way have a stubborn or non-teachable spirit? Are you lazy? Do you rebel at requests to help in the work of the Gospel? Do you hesitate to submit to leadership?
21. James 1:27 (Keep oneself unspotted from the world) Have you allowed yourself to become “spotted” by the world? Do you dress in a manner pleasing to God? Do you spend beyond what is pleasing to God on anything? Do you pray about the things that you buy?
22. James 4:6 (Pride) Are you stubborn? Do you insist on having your own rights?
23. James 3:11 (Fresh and bitter water from the same spring) Are you more worried about what people will think then what will be pleasing to God? Have you criticized His servants? Have you neglected to pray for His servants? Do you find it hard to be corrected? Is there rebellion against one who wants to restore you?