GRACE: Your Voice, God’s Ear

Jeff grace, Prayer

Many of you who follow Transforming Truth’s media streams are  doing so from a distance. We are blessed to hear from people all over the United States who have been touched by the Lord through the ministry here. We have relationship with people in other parts of the world who both contribute and receive from the messages, blogs and social media feeds that stream from here in Georgia. It occurred to me that distance between the home base here and wherever you may be might result in an unawareness of the most unique facet of the broader ministry to which TT is connected. New Bridge Church is my home church and every message you watch or listen to is preached from here. We are also connected to the Atlanta International House of Prayer and another missions ministry called Finish The Task. Though TT is legally distinct from the church and the mission, God seamlessly streams much grace and activity between these four Kingdom works. The unique aspect of what happens here is found in our prayer room which has engaged in non-stop live worship and prayer for more than thirteen years. Yes, you heard me right: our house of prayer has been ministering unto the Lord through worship and prayer unceasingly since February of 2006 – twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. Everything I do as a pastor and leader flows from what God does inside of me via the activity of prayer. Almost every sermon that is seen on television, on YouTube, on Roku or the Transforming Truth website and app was conceived in me while I sat in the prayer room listening to the voice of the Lord.

The prayer room has been for me, over the last several years, the place where I can always find active grace from God.

I attribute every single breakthrough I have ever experienced to God’s response to my cries to Him.  Those who are placed in Christ by God have the overwhelming joy of knowing that that their voices are heard in Heaven. I confess that God rarely answers my prayers with immediate action – He seems to prefer the slow-cooker process in answering my prayers. I’ve known some in the family of faith that seem to be regularly met with quick, affirming response to their requests for intervention from God. He seems to move strongly and swiftly to rectify, replenish, reveal or even repel on their behalf. My personal experience is more of a slow and steady answer which indeed comes from Him, but rarely with haste. Yet, who am I to dictate how my Father answers me? In His word He promises too many times for me to count that He listens for me, hears and knows my particular cry, and will act accordingly on my behalf when He deems it perfectly suited. Someone recently told me that the four most dangerous words for children of God are “I want it now!” How often we have thirsted after something good, yet we wanted it too soon for it to remain lastingly good for us. Yes, we have learned along the way that not only does the thing requested need to be approved by God, but also the timing of its delivery. So He gives us the grace to wait.

“Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer; listen to my plea for grace.” –Psalm 86:6

Would it shock you to know that I never remember reading that verse before today? I was unable to recall anywhere in Scripture where someone made a specific plea for grace from God. More than once we see a person receive grace instead of the particular thing that they were asking, but this prayer is different. All of our pleas are made IN grace but this is a clear request for the grace itself. My heart thunders, “AMEN!” when I read his words, because that request for grace confirms my own understanding of what should rest atop my prayer list. Grace. Grace. God’s grace. Christian friend, grace is not merely what places you in Christ and His eternal victory…grace keeps you there. Grace meets you there. Grace strengthens and matures you there. Grace empowers you there. We will always stand in need of His grace. We need it right now.

Grace is our hope and foundation.

Grace is the canopy above us and the light before us.

Grace sweetens our suffering and purifies our pains.

Grace empowers our hopes and emboldens our souls.

It is grace from God which affords us all that we need and so much of what we might desire. Grace enables us to love those who choose to despise us. Grace gives you new eyes to view people through the lens of how God feels about them. Grace calls forth our tears and then dries them with an understanding, tender smile. Grace changes us from faith to greater faith, from flickering joy to lasting joy, from adolescent hope to confident hope. Grace is the color in which the Lord Jesus is painted on the growing canvas of our hearts. Grace is what we have in this world to sustain us. Grace is sufficient for you today…not barely sufficient, but ALL sufficient. Yes, your Father has heard you today. His answer was established before you knew how to frame the prayer. His grace made you aware of your desire, His grace framed it into your own words, His grace caused you to believe as you uttered the words, and His grace is telling you right now to wait in expectation.

He is a Father like none below, and He has never needed to have His hearing checked.

He not only listens to you…He listens for you.

Make sure there is something to be heard every day.

Pray. There is grace for the asking, for the waiting, and for the receiving.