Joyce Meyer Daily Devotional July 3, 2022 

TOPIC:  First Forgive, Then Pray

SCRIPTURE: Psalm 66:18 (NIV)

If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

The devil does not want us to pray, because prayer is more powerful than we know. It invites God and His power into the situations in our lives. Through prayer, we can also invite Him to work in other people’s lives. We can accomplish more in five minutes of sincere prayer than we can in five years of effort spent trying to make things happen in our own strength.

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God answers prayer, but there are hindrances to having our prayers answered. Today’s scripture mentions one of them. We cannot have hidden or unconfessed sin in our heart and expect God to answer our prayers at the same time. Let’s ask ourselves: Are we harboring any of God’s enemies in our hearts—perhaps sin, unbelief, anger toward another person, an unwillingness to forgive, jealousy, or envy?

As we approach God in prayer, I believe we should first repent of any known, and even unknown, sin. King David prayed that God would forgive him for unconscious sins (see Psalm 19:12). When we pray, we should be sure that we have no unforgiveness in our heart toward anyone. Let us be honest with ourselves in the presence of God and approach Him with our requests only after a time of soul-searching to root out anything that may hinder our prayer.

Prayer Starter: Father, help me begin each day with a time of soul-searching, laying my heart open before You and giving You the opportunity to speak to me about anything You want to. Thank You for the privilege of prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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