Scriptural Text: Song of Solomon 2:15 Just as love deepens with relationship, so does prayer. Love identifies who you are relationship with. It’s the way you honor; the way you handle yourself; the way you talk. So it is in relationship with the Lord. It’s the way you honor Him; the way you come before His Presence; the way you communicate with Him. In your relationship with the Lord, there are things that can ruin your hearing from the Lord. In Song of Solomon, the little foxes threatened to ruin the vines when they were in bloom. Likewise, there are “little foxes” that threaten to prevent you from hearing from the Lord in this season of harvest and outpouring from Heaven. What little foxes are threatening or stunting your prayer life? Most of us would say lack of time, not treating your wife and/or others right, or lack of faith. But, let’s look at some other “little foxes” as we find solutions and our Helper and Counselor in prayer. Foxes 1. Unconfessed Sin There is no need to wonder why you aren’t hearing from God if there is unconfessed sin in your life. Psalm 66:18: Many times our prayers don’t clear the ceiling because of unconfessed & unforgiven sin. The two feed on each other. Because the sin is unconfessed, it remains unforgiven. What you regard, you hold in value. Therefore, by not confessing the sin, you are telling God that it is of some importance to you and you’re not ready to let it go. Proverbs 28:13: Trying to cover it up is an admittance that you realize it’s sin. Sometimes even though we confess the sin, we don’t forsake it. We don’t separate ourselves from it. This brings us to bondage. Elastic Bondage: As long as you don’t press to grow in the Lord, you feel free. But, as soon as you decide to step up in the Lord, you find that sin or pressure trying to restrain you. You see, the enemy is less concerned with your confession than he is with your forsaking. As long as you just give God lip service and run back to the same sin, satan is pleased. In tempting Jesus, the devil wanted Jesus to forsake God and Jesus Himself (See Luke 4:5-8). Read Romans 7:13-25 2. Fear of: Not being as “spiritual” as others Fear of being exposed Fear of man (Proverbs 29:25, 2 Tim. 1:6-10) 3. Misplaced Responsibility If you are not hearing from the Lord, it is not because God has lost any power or sovereignty. The problem is not with God; it is with us. The devil loves to get you to blame God for the problem. We have to learn to take responsibility for our actions or lack of action. Isaiah 59:1-12: God has not become dull of hearing or unable to save and deliver. In this passage, He tells us what the problem is: sin (Vs. 2). Sin will cause the Lord to hide his face from us and not listen to us. 4. Phony Bologna Ask yourself are you being real with God. Or, like some, are you just going through the motions playing the part? Sometimes we need to examine why we are doing what we are doing. The fact is no matter how big your plane is, if you are putting on a front, it will never get airborne and get to God. Isaiah 1:10-18: As you read this passage, ask yourself 1-Why am I doing what I do? 2-Is all this stuff necessary to hear from God? 3-Have I repented and come clean with God 4-Am I willing to obey God to hear from Him? 5. Vain Prayer (Matthew 6:5-8) 1 – Says nothing – not according to the Word of God, worldly 2 – Asks nothing 3 – Expects nothing – not praying in faith. 4 – Not from the heart 6. Selfish Prayer (Luke 18: 9-14) 1 – James 4:3: Praying fleshly prayers does not get results from God. You must first realize the need to prosper spiritually. (3 John 2) 2 – Matthew 6:19-21: What kind of treasure are you praying for? 3 – Psalm 37:4: Where do you delight? What do you desire most in your heart? 4 – Luke 12:13-21: There is nothing wrong with having worldly wealth. Just don’t let your worldly wealth supersede how rich you are spiritually. You have got to keep focus so that you won’t spend all of your prayer time begging for material wealth.   Our Prayer Helper: The Holy Spirit “When you yield, He prays; when you don’t, you struggle.” Romans 8:26: God knew we wouldn’t know what to pray. The Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf. Ephesians 6:18: We should always pray in the Spirit Jude 20: We are strengthened when we pray in the Spirit Praying in the Spirit: Come clean with God – confess, repent, forsake You need to know the Holy Spirit dwells in you. (1 Corinthians 6:19, Romans 8:15-16) Realize that you are not talking to man. You must yield your intellect, body & soul to the Lord. Total submission and a willingness to allow God to do the “super” with your “natural”. (Romans 8:14) Pray the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17) Be sensitive to the Spirit – must develop spiritual ears. An indicator of how your prayer life is your willingness to listen to others. Walking in Love – Grow in love and you will be able to grow in your prayer life. Forgive, forgive, forgive (Mark 11:25-26)