North Santa Rosa

Living with Purpose

The capacity to distinguish between good and evil and to form a judgment is one of the best gifts of God to Man. It’s not always easy to make these decisions. There will come times when we are faced with the alternative of choosing between the good, the bad, and the best. Life can be complex and confusing. Things are not always simple and easy to determine. But it’s possible to know the best and have the best—that which is best “for you”.
All answers to the decisions you seek are often given through the process of prayer. Generally, prayers are a collection of thoughts and desires put into words and tidy phrases. Effectual prayer can be words of innocence, confession, forgiveness, hope—all of which are motivated by a heart of love for God and others. If you take the time to pray to God, He will hear you. Prayer can take on many forms depending on how you practice it. If prayers are given with the elements of praise, petition, and thanksgiving you will get results!
Until you realize and acknowledge the power of sincere prayer, you will never know the privilege you have in practicing it. I cannot over emphasize the importance of it. Prayer helps you tap forces and to utilize strength not otherwise available. It’s astonishing what can become of deep, sincere, genuine prayer. Some people have tried it and still don’t believe in its energizing affect. Jesus said, “When you pray, you must pray believing, not wishing, but believing God hears and will do what’s best on your behalf (Genesis 18:25 ).
If you’re struggling with prayer and its results; either you are praying in the wrong way for the wrong thing or you have a barrier, known or unknown, between you and God. This barrier will short-circuit your prayers. Most of the time its sin in our life or some other troubling factor between us and God that must be dealt with before the full-power of prayer will take effect. Every person alive has the potential to possess a powerful prayer life. But there are Biblical techniques that must be followed. Matthew 9:29 says, “…Jesus told them, you will have what you want because you have faith.” And Mark 11:24 tells us, “Because of this…whatever you ask for when you pray, have faith that you will receive it. Then you will get it.” These are two verses that promote the power of positive thinking and the reality of faith.
Many people testify to the power of prayer and faith in their life. A deacon in the church I grew up in as a kid and teenager told me an inspiring story about his prayer life. He said he and his wife would often eat out on Friday and Saturday nights. But since she passed away, the sting of loneliness sometimes takes effect. During these times he would get in his truck and drive through the communities of Jay and pray for families that lived in the houses along his way. You might call it “drive-by prayers”. He went on to tell me, “Sometimes I won’t even know who lives there, But I pray anyway.” I asked him, “How do you know what to pray for?” “Oh, I would just pray for God’s blessings on the home and that God would fill it with love.” At the end of our conversation he explained, “Matthew, I want you to know, every time I make a prayer ride I feel an overwhelming sense of peace. And it’s like the love of my dear wife surrounds me and I’m lonely no more.” This man believed in the power of prayer and there’s no doubt in my mind, his prayers not only helped him, but many others who had no idea they were being prayed for.
This tells us we can help ourselves and one another by employing the divine power of God, through our prayers. The New Testament tells us in Luke 17:21, “…the kingdom of God is within you.” This means that God has placed within each one of our hearts and minds all the power needed to accomplish His will and to enjoy positive living. All that remains is for you and me to acknowledge God as the One and Only true living God and to accept Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior. Conceive as God being your ultimate source of all wisdom and truth. If you do, you will lack for nothing because God has knowledge of what you need even before you ask Him (Matt. 6:8). Ask God, receive the full-benefit of being His child, and leave all your prayer results confidently with Him.
• This weekly column is written by Matt Dobson. A graduate of Florida State University, Univ. of West Florida, and Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, he is Pastor of New Bethel Baptist Church in Jay, Florida and a 1LT Chaplain in the U.S. Army Reserves. Matt can be reached by email: He welcomes your thoughts concerning faith, belief, and Christian living. Visit the Living With Purpose website at

Posted by on Jul 21 2013. Filed under Living With Purpose, Local. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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