Confidence in Prayer

“Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.” The confidence that John is referring to is the glorious truth that a born-again believer can come before the Lord, with both a free access to Him and a confident assurance in Him! For our Heavenly Father delights to grace us with an unimpeded approach into His presence. Ephesians 3:12 reiterates this glorious promise with these words, “In whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him”. The word “boldness” depicts a steadfast confidence to speak freely in the presence of a person of extremely high rank. Well friends, the Person who we are communing with (in prayer) has the highest ranking in the entirety of the universe; for He is both the Creator and Sustainer of it all. He is the great I Am. He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. Oh, but He is also our “Abba Father”; and we are accepted in the Beloved One. Consequently, we are invited to come into the most Holy place with a steadfast confidence. But you may ask, “A steadfast confidence in what”? I am speaking of the blessed assurance that our Father delights to hear and answer the prayers of His adopted children. Brothers and sisters, we have been graced with a divine pledge that our Lord and God has committed to be our faithful Provider through prayer.

“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” When I am confident that God has given me to the Lord Jesus and He has given the Lord Jesus to me, then I can also have the abiding assurance that He will provide everything that I will ever need to live a life that magnifies my Savior. Do you know that one of the key reasons that believers do not pray more ‘faithfully and fervently’ is their own lack of confidence in God as their ‘Father-Provider’? They do not really believe, in their heart of hearts, that their prayers will be answered. For they do not truly comprehend that, ‘answers to prayers are primarily rooted and grounded in the promises of God to His children; and not in the performance of His children’! Beloved disciples, our Father desires to hear and answer our prayers far more than we desire to pray. Oh, we must recognize that our God is loving, merciful and gracious to His children who seek Him in prayer. He desires to have intimate fellowship with you. He delights to have personal communion with you. You don’t have to force your way into His presence. You don’t have to beg your Father to give you some attention. Friends, He is always eager for you to enter into His throne room and make your personal petitions known to Him.

“Therefore, brethren, having confidence to enter into the holiest, by the blood of Jesus.” Notice that our confidence is not in ourselves. Our confidence is not in our performance. For our very best day of performance would be as filthy rags to a perfectly Holy God, without Jesus as our Mediator! Our best performance could never merit one answer to prayer. On the contrary, our confidence is in the Person of Jesus Christ; the performance of Jesus Christ; the payment of Jesus Christ; and the presence of the exalted Lord Jesus Christ, at the right hand of the Majesty on high! John Newton writes these precious words of invitation, “Thou art coming to a King, large petitions with thee bring, for His grace and power are such, that none can ever ask too much.”

PLEASE PRAY FOR UPCOMING CONFERENCE IN INDIA

I am so grateful to report that the ‘Christ-Centered Evangelism’ study has just been translated into its 5th language in India, as well as its 11th language overall. I will soon be teaching this study to a conference of pastors from various locations in the state of Kerala, India. The conference will commence on January 15th.. Please pray for this needy preacher and each pastor who will be in attendance.

Thank YOU!

I am so grateful to report that the ‘Christ-Centered Evangelism’ study has just been translated into its 5th language in India, as well as its 11th language overall. I will soon be teaching this study to a conference of pastors from various locations in the state of Kerala, India. The conference will commence on January 15th.. Please pray for this needy preacher and each pastor who will be in attendance. Friends, Dianne and I are profoundly grateful for your love for this ministry and for us. Your continual and compassionate intercessory prayers for us; as well as, your faithful support for all of the tremendous open doors of training ministry and evangelistic opportunity to many nations is an immeasurable blessing. You are a vital part of every soul that is saved; every pastor and church planter that is trained; and every congregation who is edified, through the glorious multiplication of discipleship, which is occurring through these ‘equipping conferences’. Please continue to pray that the Word of God may run swiftly and our Savior would be magnified, through each opportunity that is ahead. As we enter into a new year, it is our prayer that you may be filled with the knowledge of God’s will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful unto every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God…, as we abide in Him! We love you and thank the Lord for you.

2017 Kenyan Pastor's Conference

I have recently returned from the 13th annual conference in the nation of Kenya. This Kenya ministry began in Bungoma, Kenya (in 2005) with less than 100 pastors and spiritual leaders. Over the following years, the attendance has blossomed to this year’s conference, in which nearly 700 pastors, evangelists and spiritual leaders from all over Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda were in attendance! 100’s more wanted to attend, but they could not house them. God graced me with the tremendous privilege to teach 14 sessions of an exposition of John 15:1-9. Those verses (in which our Lord employs the metaphor of the Vine, the Vinedresser and the branches) are filled with some of the most monumental treasures in the entirety of the Word of God! The Holy Spirit mightily applied the tremendous treasures in each verse, as He plumbed deeper and deeper into the hearts and lives of each the ministers, who were in this overflowing auditorium. Upon the conclusion of the teaching of verse 4 (session 7), the Spirit of God was powerfully piercing the hearts of everyone in the room! As I concluded this session, I knew that it was time to take a 30-minute break for refreshments. HOWEVER, NOBODY MOVED from their seats! Everyone’s heart was shattered; and almost every eye was shedding the tears of repentance! God graced all of us with a touch of revival! Friends, it has been a long time since I have been blessed to be in the midst of a meeting, in which the Heavenly Wind of God was so intensely blowing on the hearts of His people. The vital truths of John 15 were effectively producing a harvest of ‘a glorious refreshing of vital godliness’ in the audience! The following words of testimony are written from the heart of the Director of Kenya Ministries Training Institute, Rev. George Wafula. Bro. George is one of the key organizers of this annual conference; as well as my interpreter throughout every conference, Rev. Wafula writes, “We have just concluded a magnificent conference on “The Life That Glorifies God” (from John 15:1-9). I can personally testify that the entire conference was a tremendous blessing and spiritual success! I want to give my very sincere thanks and appreciation to all the brothers and sisters, from all over the world, who prayed for us and supported this conference. Your prayers were answered by our Lord, in a surpassingly awesome manner, in the lives of hundreds of East African spiritual leaders,church planters, evangelists and other church leaders from the entirety of Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda in attendance. Our leadership team had prepared for 600 hundred attendees, but we had an overflow of over 90 pastors. This was a big challenge for us; but we considered it to be a precious problem. We sought to provide a place of ‘sleep and meals’ for these 90 extra spiritually hungry pastors, who could not be stopped from coming to attend the Ed Lacy annual conference. God honored the meeting with His manifest presence and power, throughout each session of teaching. The Spirit of God mightily used His servant Ed, to bring out a vast treasury of truths from John 15:1-9. There was great conviction of the Spirit of God, which produced a deep confession from each of these spiritual leaders. Everyone, who attended this year’s meeting, returned to their prospective places of service testifying and confessing that they had grossly misinterpreted and misapplied this passage of scripture. They had come to realize that they had been believing unsound doctrine, that was entirely different from much of what the Lord Jesus intended to teach in this vital verses! There were also several pastors who said they had misused this passage of scripture ignorantly, to throw away many sinning church members (branches that were laying on the ground); instead of seeking to ‘lift them up’, see them cleansed from sin and restored to a place of spiritual fruitfulness. This series of teachings from John 15 has powerfully awakened every one of these spiritual leaders. It has resulted in a profound understanding of the true teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, in this crucial passage of scripture.

 There were also several Bible college professors, from various institutes, who attended with some of their students. One of the professors came to my home, on the day following the conference. He said, and I quote, “I never imagined that John 15 contained such depths of profound truth. It seemed to me like I was attending some very important Bible exposition classes, that I desperately needed to hear. For I realized that I had not been teaching my students correctly.” This Bible college professor then promised that he is planning to bring all his students to attend next year’s conference. Another pastor testified to me that, ‘He came to this conference with a thousand questions in his mind. But after coming under the powerful teachings of the Word of God, all his questions were answered’! And he left glorifying God. Yesterday, Bro. Fredrick Mulei and I attended a church service in Nairobi, Kenya. The pastor of this particular church was already beginning to teach the material which he had received in the conference! He told us that He has already committed to teach through the workbook on every Sunday, for the next 3 months. He has purposed to equip his flock with these vital truths, that they all desperately need. I sat there in amazement, just listening to this pastor, as he passed on what he had received to others. Friends, this was just one of the many hundreds of pastors (who were present at the conference) who will be putting into practice what they have heard. This ministry of multiplication has been the major goal of these conferences, from the very beginning in 2005. Bro. Ed, we must pour the truths, which we have received from you, into those who are able and ready to pour them into others also. Dear brother, it is happening! And I praise our Lord and God for that precious reality! My sincere thanks!