When we pray, we want to meet with God. We want to encounter His manifest presence through prayer!
Omni-presence is about God in His nature being ever-present.
Manifest-presence is when God is actively and unmistakably moving among His people. We want to find God and when we do, we want to stay in His presence.
God’s manifest presence demands preparation. Sin repeals His presence but repentance and humility invite His presence.
Paul warned the church about two ways we hinder the work of the Holy Spirit:
- Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit | Ephesians 4:30 – “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” To grieve means to cause pain or harm. This is a tender term showing the relational nature of the Holy Spirit. He is Holy and cannot have fellowship with sin. If sin remains unconfessed, it grieves Him, and His activity is interrupted in our life. What grieves the Holy Spirit? In short, any and every sin. Paul mentions in this passage everything from immorality, to unforgiveness, bitterness, the use of our tongue, the treatment of others.
- Don’t quench the Holy Spirit | 1 Thessalonians 5:19 – “Do not quench the Spirit.” The word quench refers to the putting out of a fire. Quenching the Holy Spirit is simply defined by forsaking His work in your life. As He begins to move, we do not resist or neglect His work. If He calls us to action we obey. When He speaks to us we listen and surrender. If He stirs our emotion we express it, if He reveals sin, we confess it. When we live a life of surrender to Him, He moves freely. When we don’t it quenches His work.
Here is a helpful process of preparation for prayer through prayer (Matthew 5:3-6).
- Recognize your desperation for Him – Poor in Spirit
- Repent of any and every sin – Mourn
- Relinquish control and surrender – Meek (
- Request that God increase your hunger for Him – Hunger & thirst for righteousness
- Remember His grace is sufficient