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Why You Pray Is More Important Than What You Pray For - Daily Hope with Rick Warren - November 15, 2017

  • 2017 Nov 15

Why You Pray Is More Important Than What You Pray For
By Rick Warren

“When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures” (James 4:3 NIV).

If you expect God to bless your life, you must be willing to bless other people’s lives with the same benefits God has given to you. One of the conditions for answered prayer is a willingness to help those less fortunate with the blessings that we are given.

Proverbs 21:13 says, “Whoever shuts their ears to the cry of the poor will also cry out and not be answered” (NIV).God says if we ignore those who are in obvious difficulty around us, what right do we have to expect him to bail us out?

God wants us to be like him, and God is love. One of the ways we prove we have love is that we’re willing to be generous toward other people. The principle of stewardship is repeated throughout Scripture: God blesses us so that we might be a blessing to other people.

For instance, we might ask God for good health, but what are we going to do with that healthy body after we’ve got it? Are we praying just to help ourselves, or are we praying so we can help other people, too? When we ask God to bless our businesses or careers, are we willing to give back a portion of what God has blessed us with?

The Bible says in James 4:3, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” Motive is important in prayer. Why you pray is more important than what you pray for.

Is it possible to pray for the right thing with the wrong motive? Sure. I’m not saying you should never pray for your own personal needs. Jesus says to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.”In Mark 11, he says you can even pray for your desires. But you have to check your motive. Are you willing to share your blessing with other people, or are you going to hoard it all to yourself?

God is not interested in simply satisfying our selfishness. The conditions of prayer are an honest relationship with God, a forgiving attitude toward other people, and a willingness to share God’s blessings with other people. God loves us and so he’s teaching how to pray in an effective way.

PLAY today’s audio teaching from Pastor Rick >>

Talk It Over

How has God blessed you? How can you share those blessings with others?

During your next quiet time, think about your motive while you pray. Are you willing to share with others what you’re asking God for?

For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!

Hear God's voice loud and clear!

When God speaks, he doesn’t pick up the phone. He talks to us in other ways – ways we might find difficult to hear, recognize, and understand.

That’s why we want to send you Pastor Rick’s Can You Hear Me Now? CD series. In it, you’ll learn how God speaks to you, and practical ways for you to identify the Father’s voice.
You’ll learn how to …

• Prepare to hear from God
• Understand the six different ways he speaks to you
• Confirm he’s the one who’s talking

Can You Hear Me Now? is our thanks for your gift below to help more people learn, love, and live the Word through Daily Hope. So, request your copy when you give.

We pray this series helps you hear God’s voice loud and clear!

This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.


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