God is willing, ready and available to listen to us and answer us when we pray. Are you willing, ready and available to pray?
There is a God that answers prayers and His name is Jehovah El Shaddai. There is no prayer request that is too big, complex or complicated for Jehovah El Shaddai to handle. Neither is there any request that is too small, trivial, mundane or inconsequential for God not to give His attention to.
The focus of today’s message is on a man who experienced Jehovah El Shaddai in the place of prayer.
Text: Genesis 24:1-15
How did the servant of Abraham, experience Jehovah El Shaddai in the place of prayer?
1. ABRAHAM’S SERVANT DISCOVERED THAT GOD IS A LIVING GOD WHO IS SO NEAR TO US WHEN WE PRAY
God was too real to Abraham’s servant. God showed Abraham’s servant how near He is to us when we pray. Abraham’s servant, discovered that in a twinkling of an eye God can get to you when you have a need, when you need His help. He is just a prayer away. Deuteronomy 4:7 says “what other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to him”. There are many gods but there is only One Living God who is near to His people when they pray to Him. The thing that makes believers great, the thing that distinguishes believers from followers of all other religions is that we have a God that is near us when we pray.
Psalm 8:1 says O Lord, our Lord how excellent is your name in all the earth. God’s names are excellent; superior to all other names on earth. There are thousands of gods with different kinds of names but God’s names are superior to the names of all other gods. His names are powerful; His names reveal His nature and attributes. His names attest to the fact that He is alive, He is a Living God. His name Jehovah El Shaddai reveals Him as the God that is ALMIGHTY, the All Sufficient, All Powerful God who possesses all power and is mighty to protect from all manner of danger and evil, mighty to satisfy and supply all our needs, the God who fulfills His Word, covenant and promises (Genesis 17:1, Psalm 91:1), our All in All who is sufficient for everything and every need (Colossians 3:11).
It is only someone that is alive that can hear you when you talk to him and give you what you need. Abraham’s servant prayed to God and God answered Him because He took His request to a Living God, to Jehovah El Shaddai.
Everyone has requests, everyone has needs but it is who you take your request to that makes all the difference. Some take their request to all kinds of places and people who don’t have the power to save or help them. In 1 Kings 18:25-29, the prophets of Baal called upon their god from morning till evening. They shouted out to their god, they danced around the altar of their god, at a point they even slashed themselves with swords and spears until blood was coming out of their bodies, but there was no response, their god didn’t answer them, their god didn’t pay any attention to them, their god seriously disappointed them. Why? Because there is only One true and Living God and He is Jehovah El Shaddai. He is the God that is near us when we pray; He is a God that hears us when we call. He is the only God that doesn’t disappoint those who put their trust in Him.
The prophets of baal cut themselves, injured themselves, blood was coming out of their bodies, they were going through so much pain right before their god, but their god wasn’t moved, their god wasn’t touched. But thank God we have a Living God, Jehovah El Shaddai who is touched by our infirmities, who understands what we are going through (Hebrews 4:15) and so sends us help when we are in need, when we are going through tough and painful times (Psalm 46:1). He is a Living God who makes our burdens His own burden. He would rather be the one carrying that burden than see us weighed down by any kind of burden that’s why He says “cast thy burden upon the Lord and He shall sustain thee, he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22).
The prophets of Baal called on their god from morning till evening but there was no response. Abraham’s servant called on Jehovah El Shaddai and before he had even finished praying (Genesis 24:15), while he was yet speaking (Isaiah 65:24), God answered him.
Like it happened to the servant of Abraham, as you pray to Jehovah El Shaddai, He will manifest Himself in your life as a Living God. You will not pray and be disappointed. You will not pray and be wondering where is God, can He see me, can He hear me, can He even handle this issue? Just as God sent an angel to Daniel while he was yet speaking, while he was still praying (Daniel 9:20-21), this year, God will send an angel with the answer to your prayer, with your blessing and package while you are yet speaking, while you are still praying.
It is only a Living God that can answer you while you are yet speaking. Even before we bring our requests to God, He already knows what we need. Matthew 6:8 tells us that our Father in heaven knows what we need before we even ask Him for it.
God never runs helter-skelter all over the place trying to meet a need or is confused when a request is brought to Him because being El Shaddai, the All Sufficient God, He knows what we need before we even ask and has already made provision for that need ahead of time. He has kept the answer aside for us. So when we pray, it is very easy for Him to answer us while we are yet speaking because the answer is already with Him even before we have voiced out our request.
It wasn’t when Abraham’s servant prayed that God started thinking of a wife for Isaac. It had already been on God’s mind to bless Isaac with a wife. God had already prepared someone as a suitable wife for Isaac, so as soon as Abraham’s servant made the request, God released the wife He had been preparing for Isaac.
As you devote yourself to prayer this year, all those answers, all those things that God has purposed in His heart to give you, all those blessings that have been prepared and stored up for you in heaven, before you even finish asking God for it, Jehovah El Shaddai will release them to you in Jesus mighty name, AMEN!
2. ABRAHAM’S SERVANT DISCOVERED THAT THERE IS NO REQUEST THAT IS TOO HARD, COMPLEX OR COMPLICATED FOR GOD TO HANDLE
Abraham gave his servant a very hard task. He told him to go to a place he had never been before, a place he didn’t know anyone there and go and select a suitable wife for his son Isaac. The person must be one of Abraham’s distant relatives, the person must be willing to immediately return back with his servant to marry Isaac someone she has never seen before, someone she doesn’t know anything about his personality or character. She should just leave her family and follow a stranger all in the name of marriage (Genesis 24:1-9). She was to agree to a marriage by proxy. No matter how desperate one is to get married, how easy is it for a woman to do this?
So this man was given a very hard, complex and complicated assignment. But when he took it to Jehovah El Shaddai in prayer, he discovered that nothing is too difficult for God.
Perhaps you are here today and your situation is like the woman with the issue of blood. All the doctors you have seen and spent so much money on without getting any cure to that health problem in your life have told you that ailment in your body is too complicated, it will require surgery, it is a terminal disease. Today, I present to you Jehovah El Shaddai; the God that makes complicated things easy. He will solve that complicated health issue in your life.
As a student or when you are before a panel and they ask you some very hard, complex and complicated questions, you need Jehovah El Shaddai; the God that is more than enough to meet every need, the God with whom nothing is too difficult for. He will surely give you the answer for that complex question if you rely on Him for help, if you call out to Him in prayer.
I prophesy into your life that in your place of work, as a student, in ministry, this year no task or assignment will be too difficult or complicated for you for Jehovah El Shaddai will help you with all kinds of complex issues as you make Him your All in All, as you call on Him and trust in Him.
As you commit yourself to a lifestyle of prayer, every situation in your life that appears impossible, Jehovah El Shaddai, the Almighty God will manifest His Almightiness in your life and make the impossible possible. Your own matter will not be too difficult for the Almighty God to do.
3. ABRAHAM’S SERVANT DISCOVERED THAT JEHOVAH EL SHADDAI GIVES GOOD SUCCESS WHEN YOU HUMBLY CALL ON HIM
Jehovah El Shaddai didn’t allow Abraham’s servant embark on a futile journey. Jehovah El Shaddai didn’t allow Abraham’s servant to labour in vain; to travel all that distance with nothing to show for it. Jehovah El Shaddai didn’t allow Abraham’s servant fail in the assignment that was given him. The servant humbly prayed “give me success today” and God gave him good success. Prayer opens you up to receive good success. Prayer is a pedestal for receiving divine success.
When you pray not if you pray, Jehovah El Shaddai will give you good success in every area of your life. You will not labour in vain this year. You will not fail in your assignments and responsibilities. You will not fail God. You will not fail your family, church and nation. In your career, business, education and ministry you will not fail. Jehovah El Shaddai will crown your efforts with good success.
The summary of Abraham’s servant experience with God shows that God is willing, ready and available to listen to us when we pray and to answer us speedily when we pray. He answered Abraham’s servant speedily. Jehovah El Shaddai is the God that answers His people speedily. He will answer you speedily without any delay.
Note that all these good things happened to Abraham’s servant not because he took a wishing bone and made a wish but because HE PRAYED! When Abraham sent his servant on this mission, he didn’t tell his servant that he must pray about what he had to do. The servant on his own realized that without God’s help, there was no way he could succeed in this endeavour. In other words, he acknowledged his insufficiency and acknowledged God’s sufficiency (2 Corinthians 3:5), He acknowledged his limitations and acknowledged God’s unlimited power and knowledge that was why God manifested Himself to Abraham’s servant as Jehovah El Shaddai. Abraham’s servant lived out Proverbs 3:6. He acknowledged God in his undertaking, he committed his ways to God and God made his path straight, God gave him good success, God showed up for him as Jehovah El Shaddai the ever reliable, ever dependable God.
SOME COMMON PITFALLS OF PRAYER
Abraham’s servant when he received an assignment from his master had many options before him. He could have fallen for any of these common pitfalls:
TOO MUCH DEPENDENCE ON THE PRAYERS OF OTHERS:
Abraham’s servant could have said my master Abraham is close to God, he knows God, God speaks personally to him. Why do I have to bother myself to pray or what difference will my prayer make after all hasn’t Abraham been praying for his son? Are there issues in your life and you are busy eating and sleeping? You are relying on the prayers of the pastor or prayer warriors or those who are fasting to see you through? It’s wonderful to have a praying pastor, spouse, child, or close friend. But if you want to personally experience Jehovah El Shaddai in your life, you as a person must rise up and pray. Having people intercede for you is great. But it should never override the place of personal and regular times to commune and fellowship with God. One mistake a lot of people make when it comes to prayer is to rely too much on the prayers of others thus limiting their own personal growth. They keep themselves from some great experiences and testimonies God wants them to have because they are too lazy, tired, and sometimes indifferent to pray. Imagine what would have happened to Jesus at the Garden of Gethsemane if He had relied on the prayers of His disciples. He certainly wouldn’t have made it to the cross (Matthew 26:36-46). Stop folding your hands while others are busy praying. There are some issues others can help you to pray about, but there are many issues in our lives that we must be the ones to personally, fervently and persistently pray about. Like they say, you are the one that knows where the shoe is pinching you, so you are the one in the best position to show or tell God where the shoe is pinching you; what the real issue, need or problem is. If you want God to manifest Himself in your life, if you want to know His will for your life, if you want to personally know God and daily walk in divine direction, you must pray and keep on praying to God.
ALLOWING PRIDE SET IN:
Abraham’s servant could have undermined the importance of prayer based on his position and status. Eliezer didn’t feel he was too big or too accomplished to pray. This man was not just a mere servant. Genesis 24:2 tells us that he was Abraham’s chief servant, the one in charge of all that he had. In other words, he was a big manager. And we know from scripture that Abraham was a wealthy man so this servant was managing the affairs and resources of a very wealthy man (Genesis 24:34-35). But Eliezer put aside his position and status and prayed to God. You can’t be too big; too anointed, intelligent and wealthy for God. But today some people feel they are too big or too accomplished to pray or do certain things for God. They can’t imagine themselves going on their knees or lying before God in prayer yet they have serious needs and issues in their lives.
In Galatians 3:3, Paul spoke about people who begin their walk with God well. They begin by depending on the Spirit of God, but somewhere along the way, they miss it. They start doing things by human effort. There are people who when they first started in their walk with God, used to depend on God whenever they had anything to do like lead worship, preach or make any presentation in the office. But now because God has been using them, they have seen the anointing of God at work in their life, they have made some notable achievements in their career or business, now they don’t bother to pray before they minister or embark on projects. Their confidence is now in themselves; their experience or the anointing upon their life. Forgetting that God must be our continuous source of help and strength to be continuously filled with the anointing of God, to maintain a vibrant prayer life, to daily experience the Almightiness of God and see Him as Jehovah El Shaddai. Proverbs 28:26 says it is a fool who trusts in oneself. It is hard to know God as Jehovah El Shaddai when you don’t realize and understand that without God, you have no strength, no power of your own. Far too many people undermine the importance and power of prayer because of pride. It’s hard to have a vibrant, deep and consistent prayer life when you are full of pride; full of yourself.
RELYING ON HUMAN WISDOM OR TAKING THINGS AT FACE VALUE:
Abraham’s servant could have just asked someone from the town to recommend a good wife for Isaac. After all, the person was more likely to know the ladies in the town that came from good families and had a good reputation. That made more sense than he a total stranger picking a good wife for his master from a place he had never been before and knew nothing whatsoever about any of the young ladies there. But he knew that God alone sees what no one can see, God alone knows everyone’s heart. So he didn’t want to depend on common sense or human wisdom. He relied totally and completely on God and God manifested Himself in his life.
Joshua made a very grave and costly mistake when he took things at face value and didn’t bother to pray to God; to inquire from God about what to do (Joshua 9:9-16). Even when something appears as the most obvious step to take or thing to do, don’t rely on common sense, don’t rely on human wisdom. The way that seems like the most logical, the right and best way to go, may be nothing but a path to destruction (Proverbs 14:12) that is why you must depend on God; you must rely on Him to guide and lead you. Don’t bring logic into your walk with God, be divinely guided. Common sense, logic, human wisdom and intelligence can fail you, but you can never go wrong with divine guidance. Prayer indeed is the platform or base for receiving divine guidance.
God is ready to do great things when we pray, are you like Abraham’s servant ready to go to Him in prayer to receive these great things?
• Father, this year strengthen my prayer life.
• Father, deliver me from lukewarmness in prayer.
• Father, uproot pride and arrogance from my life that I may experience your power as I pray.
• Lord Jesus, my burden bearer, please carry my burdens. I cast all those situations that are troubling me and weighing me down on you. Take this burden from me O my Lord and my God.
• O Lord, Jehovah El Shaddai, as I call out to you in prayer, please answer me speedily without delay.
• My Father and my God, as I call to you in prayer, confirm and make clear your will for my life. Don’t let me miss it; don’t let me fall into error.
• Father, as I call out to you in prayer, give me good success in every area of my life. Put an end to every form of failure in my life. Replace all past failures with good success.
• Almighty God, Jehovah El Shaddai, as I pray to you manifest your almightiness and do the impossible in my life.
• The God that answers by fire, as I pray to you, give me abundant answers to prayers; fill my life with testimonies of your goodness and favour so I will be encouraged and strengthened to pray even more, so I will be encouraged to never stop praying.