With all the noisy confusion of life, loud voices of expectations coming from other people and the thundering sound of your inner voice. Can you still hear the voice of God? In this world full of distractions can you still hear that tiny voice? Or gradually you’re getting use to the noise?
The message of today’s preaching started with my pastor sharing his experience when he was in London. While he was at the airport, he spoke to saleswoman who was selling a wireless noise cancelling headphones that eliminate unwanted background noises (especially airplane engine noise) that he surely needs for his flight since he frequently travel overseas. He was really amazed because it cancels all the noise and all he can hear is the deafening sound of silence. With that illustration, he concluded that sometimes we also need that noise cancelling headphones to hear the voice of God in this noisy world especially during our prayer time.
It’s hard to pray and believe in faith, if the noise around you is cancelling the voice of the Lord. How can you stand in faith and pray if the noises of the world overpower the voice of the Lord? He shared to us ways to develop our prayer life and claim God’s promises through the Word of God in 1 Kings 18:41-46:
And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.”The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.” So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’” -1 Kings 18:41-46:
- Hear the sound of God’s promises
And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” (v.41) During this time, the Israel was experiencing a drought and a famine for a long time—and God promised Ahab to send rain on the face of the earth through Prophet Elijah.
In your everyday life, you should seek to hear God’s promises—and those promises are found in the bible. Your prayers should be based on God’s promises for you. When you are praying, you are just claiming God’s promises for you. Always choose to listen to the voice of God. Don’t listen to the voice of the enemy for he’ll just surely kill, steal and destroy you. He will only throw accusations, condemnations and fears in you. But the promises of God can cancel all those arguments and produces a sound of faith in you.
- Turn the promises of God into intensified prayer
So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. (v.42) God’s promise of sending rain led Elijah to climb on the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. This action symbolizes intense prayer, not just an ordinary kind of prayer. Great needs demand great prayer. And desperate situation requires desperate prayer.
- Expect even though nothing is there
“Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked.“There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.” (v.43)
Elijah made the servant to go and look toward the sea seven times expecting the promise of rain from God. Prayer is about recognizing God. Prayer is the key to make God’s promises fulfilled. We need to constantly hear the Word of God for His promises to be established in our hearts.
- Persevere in God
Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.” (v.43)
Sometimes God will ask you to wait before the fulfillment of his promises in your prayer not because he wants to give you pain but because He wants you to love more the giver than the gift. Persevere in prayer. Prayer is spending time with God while waiting. God wants you to pursue Him during the process of waiting. He is your Father and He loves to be pursued by you. While you’re waiting for the answer to your prayer, pursue Him.
- Act in Faith
The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.” So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’” (v. 44)
When faith believes, faith acts. For faith without action is dead. Having nothing is different from having small thing. Never underestimate the small things that God does in your lives. Faith sees small clouds. God has a promise in your life and He will start with those small clouds until heavy rain comes down.
Preacher: Bishop Oriel M. Ballano
Senior Pastor, Doulos for Christ World Harvest Ministry / National G12 Coordinator