Sunday, February 8, 2015

FAQ #5 Asking Questions that Garner God's Answers



 After six years of practice, two children plus grandma living with us, my husband and I were ready to build our dream house. We did what every young couple does; we started looking in locations that offered the type of home we desired. We walked through model homes and poured over blueprints with home builders. 


I began our search with great anticipation. Having been raised in a very frugal home, I could hardly believe we were looking at building our dream house! We walked through spacious family rooms, deluxe kitchens and marveled at the possibilities. My imagination took flight with floor plans and options.

There was just one problem….


Every time we ventured out with high hopes I returned with unease. It made absolutely no sense. We were a dual income family with great earning potential. What was holding me back?

I ignored the disquiet and plunged ahead again only to have the same lack of peace boomerang back on me. After a number of weeks of start, then stop, my husband asked point blank, “Are we buying a house nor not?” My only response was that I simply had no peace about it. Little did we know that right around the corner God was about to ask me to quit my job to be a stay-at-home mom. Without my income we could not afford the expense of a larger home.


What I learned in the next sixteen years of my prayer apprenticeship with God, and applying that wisdom retrospectively, I would have approached the whole house hunting issue very differently.


First of all, I never prayed about whether God wanted us to build our dream home in the first place. That was my main mistake. Many times we assume that God wants us to have what we want for ourselves, especially if we have the money in the bank to pay for it.


When we pray for wisdom, we have to ask ourselves, “Am I making any assumptions without checking if that is God’s will?” Put first things first. “God, do You want us to ______(buy a larger home)?” Then sort out the order of the other questions. The next question would be, “Is this Your timing?” Then ask about cost, location, etc.


It is best to ask one question at a time. Be careful not to combine two questions together. For example I recently prayed with a couple who were invited to visit a single male friend. Instead of asking, “Lord, do you want them to go?” I separated the question into two distinct queries by first asking if the husband should go and then asking if the wife was to go along as well. This eliminated any confusion as to God’s will for each of them. 


Word your questions as simply as possible rather than embedding them in long sentences. For example: “Lord, do you want us to change our health insurance carrier?” Rather than, “Lord, we really don’t like our health insurance and it’s costing us a lot of money and Suzy needs new braces and we don’t know whether to get them now or next year, but we just need your wisdom.” God might be silent on that second prayer because there are two questions embedded in one and any answer might be confusing.


Takeaway Points:


*  Ask yourself, "Am I making any assumptions?" before asking for God's wisdom.

Put your questions in simple sentences.

*  Be sure to ask about God's timing.

*  Order your questions in a logical sequence.

I go into further detail on how to ask God questions in my book, Seven Secrets to Power Praying, as well as what to do when God is silent.




9 comments:

  1. Hi Jane, I saw you first on Sid Roth's sure. Thank you for sharing your story. I've read your blog on waiting to hear God's answer and being ready to say 'yes' even when I don't know all the details. I'm an international student at a university and should have graduated already while ago but i've have been in a cycle of failing classes and I can't even register for a class. God helped me one time i failed and i did well the next semester but I grew lazy again with other bad habits worsening everything. I feel like i have taken God's help, mercy and grace for granted. And I don't like running to God when I know I don't have that good relationship with him, it's like using God. I know I should be in a much better place in my life but time's lost and I don't know how to recognize the voice of the Holy Spirit so I can know the next step to take. I know there's still hope .I really need a MIRACLE.

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    1. In addition to Jane's advice, if you are not already doing so, I would encourage you to engage yourself with a body of believers at a Bible based church who can provide support and encouragement to help foster your relationship with our Father. There are prayer warriors who can intercede on your behalf to help you along this Christian journey. We are not designed to go it alone, but are made up as a single body edifying one another as we serve Christ. Your passion can be rekindled by connecting with other fired-up saints.

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    2. I totally agree. Blessings...Jane

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  2. Anonymous,

    I am so glad you recognized God's grace the first time you failed. It seems like the lesson became a bit harder to learn the second time. Reality hits hard when we suffer the consequences of our mistakes. But I want to encourage you that all is not lost. God has your attention now. Pursue Him just for His presence, to be in a very close relationship with Him. When you show Him that you are serious and committed, I believe you will hear Him. Show Him that you are trustworthy (you don't have to be perfect, none of us is perfect) and willing to obey whatever He tells you. I talk about this in the beginning of my book and show you how to pursue God and how to be patient. God knows our hearts and knows when we sincerely want Him just for the sake of knowing Him. Jeremiah 29:13. Blessings...Jane

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  3. Hi Jane. Just regarding FAQ #5 Asking Questions that Garner God's Answers! This is 'exactly' what has been happening to me over the last 6 years or thereabouts. We moved from our first home (which I prayed for specifically with my Aunty 17 years ago), and moved to a brand new house about 6 years ago. We stayed living there for 7 years - and due to not seeking The Lords Will - due to a financial situation where we panicked and made a decision that took us back to our first home that was being rented out. Had we had just stayed where we were and sought the Lord - He would have worked everything out for our good. But...I was...wise in my own eyes and foolish. I was so disheartened and disappointed in myself for just not waiting on the Lord. I was very hard on myself for the next 4 years. Since then, every time I have gone to seek a brand new house again, I lose my peace - every single time I look for a new home - it never eventuates and I lose my peace. Even though we could sell our current home and obtain a new one again - and by the banks standards we have the income to support the application to get into further debt - I continue to lose my peace. This 'must' be from the Lord because just recently i heard from Him. This is what He said to my Heart: 'IF........you will.....remain in Me (my Word)....and stay stable (steadfast)....I Will.........Establish You'. I began a to seek out and study the word 'Established' in all its forms. This has, helped me to realise that he can transform my plain house...into 'His' house for His purposes...and beauty always follows what He says He will do. I finally received your book: '7 secrets to Power Praying' and have devoured every page in every spare moment i could get..in my lunch breaks at work...sitting up late at night and have finally come to page 129. Thank you for being such a Blessing. :-)

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  4. What a wonderful testimony. Thanks for sharing that and I am so glad you are enjoying the book! Blessings...Jane

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  5. Jane,
    I have been reading your book and love it. I need to hear from God on whether or not He wants me to sell some land I have, but I'm running out of time. I'm looking for a job, and I don't want to lose my investment, but I want to trust God. I feel like I can't quiet my mind to hear Him. I'm really struggling with this.

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  6. Danielle,
    It is hard to quiet the mind when we are focused on the details of the issue. Should I sell? If so, for how much? Etc, etc. But as humans we naturally tend to do that. When I get stressed over a decision, there are several things I might do. If I have prayed and prayed with no answer, I write the problem on a scrap of paper, declare Ps. 37:5 over the problem and then leave it in God's hand. I tell Him that I am absolutely committed to doing whatever He wants and that I would like several confirmations. I stop praying about it and get busy doing mundane things. I refuse to think about it any longer and trust that God will pop the answer into my thoughts at another time. When we fret and analyze we dig ourselves into an emotional hole so to speak. It's so important to get your mind off the problem so your spirit can receive from the Holy Spirit. I hope that helps. Blessings..Jane

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    1. Thank you, Jane. I will do that. Thanks for your book, too!

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