My friend Deb on Prayer: Part 2

Yesterday I introduced you to my friend, Debra Fehsenfeld. Here’s the second part of her answers to my questions on prayer:

What do you think is the most important thing to understand about prayer? 
It matters. People/situations are changed by prayer.

How much time do you spend talking to God; how much time do you spend listening?  
I’m not trying to be modest nor am I trying to cover any lack; I simply don’t have an accurate guess right now. I would like to think that I am always attentive/listening, and I guess I’d also like to think that I’m ever ready in prayer, though I’m sure this is not accurate. This is, however, what I strive for.

Do you look forward to praying? If so, why?
I’m guessing you mean the longer, concentrated times of prayer. The answer to that is that I sometimes look forward to it. When I do, it’s because I know that God hears and will do something. When I don’t, it’s because I’m nearsighted—even blind—and have decided not to care!

Sometimes I start out praying in a spirit of this chosen nearsightedness, but the kind and gracious Spirit of our SAVIOR/DELIVERER comes and warms my cold heart, reminding me that I am not here to serve myself. Other times, I remain somewhat emotionless yet I pray on by faith believing God will not hold my emotions against me.

How do you hear and discern God’s voice?
If a person or situation comes to my mind, I assume it is a call to prayer/action.

What is the greatest thing you’ve ever asked God for?
Change in myself–impulses, genetic dispositions, desires, habits, priorities.

What is the greatest thing you’ve ever seen God do in response to your prayers? 
There are so many “greatest things” I’ve seen God do in response to prayer that I’d need to write a book to tell them all! I can’t pick one or two because my gut cries out, “That’s not all! Injustice!”

He answers in ways that literally take my breath away . . . His gracious giving of power to do what feels impossible to do, the perfect timing in which He answers, and the way He answers–revealing complete knowledge and understanding beyond human wisdom or even comprehension. 

What else should we know about prayer? 
I believe that everything about prayer is personal; if it is impersonal, it is not prayer, it is babbling. I think that prayer is me—just as I am—going to God just as He is—in order to receive from Him.

So . . . I'd love to hear from you. Did anything from this interview speak to you personally? How is God changing the way you think about and "do" prayer?  

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About the Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula Marsteller

Paula has served with Revive Our Hearts for thirteen years. She is the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom. There's nothing she loves to share more than the gospel-centered truths that have so transformed her own life: what it means on a daily basis to be "dead to sin, alive to God, and in Christ Jesus." Paula, Trevor, and their son, Iren, make their home in New York.

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