Thursday, August 30, 2007

Encouraging Word For All Who Pray....

The following is an excerpt from John Piper's book, "The Pleasures of God."

"...God loves to magnify His glory in the lives of his people. So he designed prayer as a way for this to happen. Jesus says, 'whatever you ask in my name, I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.' (John 14:14) So God has designed prayer as an occasion when he and the Son will be glorified as the source and agent in doing good to his people. This is one of the reasons Revelation describes the prayers of the saints as golden bowls of incense before the throne of God. (Rev. 5:8) God delights in the aroma of his own glory as he smells it in the prayers of his people. It is as though God has a favorite food. When we pray, he smells the aroma from the kitchen as you prepare his special dish. When God hungers for some special satisfaction, he seeks out a prayer to answer. Our prayer is the sweet aroma from the kitchen ascending up into the King's chambers making him hungry for the meal. But the actual enjoyment of the meal is his own glorious work in answering our prayer. The food of God is to answer our prayers. He has no deficiency in himself that he needs to fill up, so he gets his satisfaction by magnifying the glory of his riches by filling up the deficiencies of people who pray.
This seems to be the point of Ps. 50:13-15, 'Do I eat the flesh of bulls or the drink the blood of goats?' says the Lord. NO. Therefore, 'offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving...and call upon him in the day of trouble, and he will deliver you, and you shall glorify him.' The demonstration of the glory of God in answered prayer is God's special feast. So if we want to feed him with the only kind of joy he is capable of, we hold up the empty cup of prayer and let him show the riches of his glory by filling it. "

This portion of reading has been food for my own soul for about two days now. I couldn't find a good spot to cut off my quote, it is so good! I hope it was an encouragement to you today, as well . Wherever we are, blogging friends, stretched across the globe, may our collective prayers rise to Heaven and be a sweet aroma--a bountiful feast--for our Heavenly Father.

11 comments:

Liz said...

Tara...what an inspirational book on prayer. I need to get it. Thank you so much for sharing. Very interesting.....Liz B

Tara said...

So nice to hear from you, Liz! Hope you and PHEEEEEL are doing well! I'm sorry, I can't resist; I always referred to your hubby by first and last name. So weird, I know. Thanks for your comment, though. This book is a whole discourse on the things that bring pleasure to God. This excerpt was taken from a chapter on the prayers of the upright. Very encouraging and inspirational.

Kimberly said...

It is amazing to me that God takes pleasure in us at all..what a gracious Father!

julie f said...

Thanks for the encouraging words to us! That was a wonderful reminder...I know in my head that God loves to hear our petitions, but sometimes I forget and begin feeling as if I am a bother to keep asking and asking. How humbling and awe-inspiring to think that He delights in our dependence on Him.

Liz said...

Tara ...wouldn't be normal if you and/or Julia didn't refer to him as Pheel. I have always thought it very humorous and so has he! Ha!

jenny said...

Prayer has been on my mind a lot, mainly in regard to two areas. 1.) My need to make more time to pray and 2.) My hesitancy to ask (especially for requests I see as "huge") when Scripture clearly tells us to ask boldly and persistently. Interesting thoughts from Piper--hadn't ever thought of prayer in that light before.

On a TOTALLY unspiritual note, have you ever seen the Youtube video "John Piper is Bad"? One of the "perks" of having a teaching husband is having students point these things out to us. Just search "John Piper" at Youtube and it will come up--it is worth it, I promise. And allegedly he personally found it amusing as well.

Tara said...

Jenny: I will look up the YouTube video. I'm curious! And, I probably should have commented in the body of my post that I realize how multi-faceted prayer is. This short excerpt was only one aspect of prayer that was being brought out. If you know Piper, you know he had so much more to say!! I'm not usually one for the touchy-feely sappy illustrations of how we relate to God, but for some reason, this paragraph touched me. And I found the scripture references intriguing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts as well!

Sonja said...

Encouraging words. Thanks!

~Heather~ said...

Tara, that was a very inspirational post! Thanks for posting it! =)

I happened to read your comment to Liz B. about her PHEEEEL and had to smile. My first year of dating my Phillip I called him that too...PHEEEL! Well, don't know if you know Anthony Webb or not, but he and my Phillip were in the same quartet and one weekend I got permission to ride down with the quartet to my home state of Tenn. Well, when we got there, Anthony (who is RARELY embarrassed) was talking to the Quesenberry family and was saying, "Yes, Heather and Phillip were sitting in the back and Heather was saying, "PHEEEL THIS AND PHEEEEL THAT...." and then he realized what he said and what IT SOUNDED LIKE HE WAS TALKING ABOUT, and was very "GOT" and turned BEAT RED...while the whole house HOWLED LAUGHING AT HIM!!! After we had dated for a year, I realized that my Phillip prefers to be called "Phillip", so I don't call him PHEEEL anymore! =)

Have a wonderful weekend in Jesus!
Love, Heather =)

Marty said...

What a great thought!!! Thank you!

Heather, that story is too funny!!

LaDonna said...

I so enjoyed this post. Our pastor says that Piper is one of his "Heroes of the Faith!" So this really caught my eye. Thanks again for sharing it.