1Peter 3:12 declares, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil."
Here is a simple fact of how prayer works both ways. Having such a perspective provides a very clear process of its operation. Here’s a story of how it must be viewed: “A man's daughter had asked the local minister to come and pray with her father. When the minister arrived, he found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows. An empty chair sat beside his bed. The minister assumed that the old fellow had been informed of his visit. "I guess you were expecting me, he said. 'No, who are you?" said the father. The minister told him his name and then remarked, "I saw the empty chair and I figured you knew I was going to show up," "Oh yeah, the chair," said the bedridden man. "Would you mind closing the door?" Puzzled, the minister shut the door. "I have never told anyone this, not even my daughter," said the man. "But all of my life I have never known how to pray. At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it went right over my head." I abandoned any attempt at prayer," the old man continued, "until one day four years ago, my best friend said to me, "Johnny, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here is what I suggest." "Sit down in a chair; place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It's not spooky because he promised; 'I will be with you always'. "Then just speak to him in the same way you're doing with me right now." "So, I tried it and I've liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I'm careful though If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she'd either have a nervous breakdown or send me off to the funny farm."
The minister was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old man to continue on the journey then he prayed with him, anointed him with oil, and returned to the church. Two nights later the daughter called to tell the minister that her daddy had died that afternoon. Did he die in peace?" he asked. Yes, when I left the house about two o’clock, he called me over to his bedside, told me he loved me and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, I found him dead. But there was something strange about his death. Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on the chair beside the bed. What do you make of that?" The minister wiped a tear from his eye and said, "I wish we could all go like that."
The “empty chair” provided a real manifestation of faith in terms of establishing a solid communication to God through the application of prayer. No matter what the tool, it should always be simple and not complicated. St. Peter gave a vivid illustration of what transpires to achieve an answered prayer and the reason for an unanswered prayer. It does not get any clearer than that. Thus, when we follow this simple path, the result is predictable. The clear assurance of an answered prayer was established. Now, everything else is now up to us.
In prayer, it is both a spiritual and a physical event. It is a conversation between very close friends. We may ask, how does God respond to our prayer? He answers in many ways. To those that know Him closely, it will never be mysterious. This is what makes prayer different to those that involve in it. It should be done with an expectation from God and preparation from those that approach Him. God responds clearly with righteousness and He becomes clearly obligated to it. What a difference it would make when this condition is met from our end! Now the burden is on us not on God. Are you ready to go on the next level?
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