When I went to the CBD warehouse sale I thought about buying a book on how to pray more effectively. I already own Robert Foster’s book but I was wondering if there was another book to use as a guide. As I was reaching up to grab one such book the Spirit told me not to buy it. I didn’t and still believe it was the right decision.
I have watched the ad on TV about the “7 Prayers that will change my life forever” books and calendars. It seems like a formula we can follow to pray. Prayer was not meant to be done by using a formula, or anything related to it. Jesus provided a guideline on how to pray, not a formula. Prayer, to me, is an intimate conversation between God and myself. I should praise Him and thank Him for my salvation and daily provisions. The other things I usually pray about are things the Spirit has pressed upon my heart, a burden to pray about some situation or someone to pray for. I don’t believe I can use a formula beyond what Jesus provided because it would not seem as personal.
I also have a problem with praying in tongues during a public time of prayer. I understand the person may experience it during their personal prayer time but my belief is that it is meant to be private and kept private. This is what Paul teaches to the Corinthians. It may seem right but if I don’t understand them then I do not receive any spiritual benefit from it, and then it is not profitable to me (paraphrase from Paul since I don’t have bible in front me). I do not mean to offend or cause any problems. Speaking in tongues is from the Spirit when someone is there to interpret the message. Otherwise, it sounds like gibberish and can be distracting to someone.
Someone suggested that if I discourage people from speaking in tongues in a time of public prayer then I am hindering the work of the Spirit. I believe we have already done that in our country by believing that our knowledge of spiritual things and theological concepts has rendered the manifestations of the Spirit moot and unnecessary. We are wrong when we are stuck in that mindset. We need to experience the power of the Holy Spirit. We need to witness healings, legitimate healings, feel the mighty rush of His wind whipping through our churches.
I hope I do not sound like I am speaking from high up on my spiritual horse. I am speaking from my heart and believe the Spirit has placed this on me to write about. I firmly believe that God is going to do incredible works through the church and display the power of the Holy Spirit which is not manifested in tongues alone, and I hope it is based on the Word of God, and not just the manifestations of the Spirit. It is the Word, and the Spirit that inspired the writing of the Word, and the Word Himself, Jesus, that will keep us grounded, and focused on the goal He has set before us.