Answering God

By Dave Henning / December 9, 2014

“Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.  Now I know in part, then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”- 1 Corinthians 13:12

“However difficult it may sound, the hearing really precedes the asking.  It is the basis of it.  It makes it real asking, the asking of Christian prayer.”- Karl Barth

Timothy Keller defines prayer as a “personal communicative response to the knowledge of God” in Chapter 3 of Prayer.  However, because prayer is defined as a response to the knowledge of God, our prayers are profoundly altered by the amount and accuracy of that knowledge.

Pastor Keller adds that prayer works itself out at two levels.  At Level 1, prayer is a basic human instinct to reach out for help to a general, unspecific God.  At Level 2, prayer is a spiritual gift that unclouds our understanding of God through Scripture and the power of the Holy Spirit.

Although all prayer is responding to God, God always is the initiator.  As the author notes, ” ‘hearing’ always precedes the asking. God comes to us first or we would never reach out to him.”  Through God’s Word and the power of the Holy Spirit, prayer becomes answering God- a full conversation.

Today’s question: Following your vocation loss, what has strengthened your prayer life?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog”: “Knowing God”

About the author

Dave Henning


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