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Orthodox views on praying with boldness

LucianNae

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From what I've learned so far, in Orthodoxy a state of humbleness is usually required when praying, but here is what this Protestant guy say on this matter: http://instagr.am/p/CD_nalcom6T/
What are your views on this matter? Please share some wisdom of the Orthodox Church elders and saints.
 

hecma925

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Name it, claim it. Once saved, always saved. God the eternal Sugar Daddy. Me me me me me me. What's the point of prayer if God already knows everything?
 

Stinky

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I pray for God to grant me repentance; and I pray for love for Him and my neighbor. These are heavenly gifts from Our Creator's hand of mercy.
Repentance and Love.
God knows best what I need to bring me to repentance and pure love. May His will be done.
 

Stinky

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How do you define 'repentance' if you think it is something God can grant you?
I can know my sin. I can see my sin. I can know I am seperated from God. I can not make my heart be sorry. I cannot find the tears. I can do good works, fast, pray, give alms and tithe. But I depend on the Holy Spirit and The intercession of Our Lady, Holy Theotokos, to grant to me true repentance.
I can love my family and friends. I can love those who bless me and do me good. I need the Holy Spirit to teach me to love those who hate me or despise me.
I depend on the Holy Spirit to teach me to love God. Not my image of who I think He is. Not for His gifts. Not for His blessings. For Him. For His glory.
 

Stinky

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How do you define 'repentance' if you think it is something God can grant you?
Acts 5: 31, 32 NIV

"God exalted Him to His own right hand as Prince and Savior that He might give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. We are witnesses of these things and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him. "

I dont know. I kind of see fasting, praying, almsgiving, tithing, church attendance, feeding poor etc as acts of obedience, a memorial offering (like Cornelius Acts 10)...our acts of obedience go up to heaven and and act as a ladder to carry our feeble prayers before God Almighty and they beg for His beautiful gift of tears that washes us clean and makes room for the Holy Spirit so that we can properly love God and love our neighbor.
That's my simplistic mind summing it all up. Beyond that, Im too simple to go into deep waters.
 

sestir

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I can know my sin. I can see my sin. I can know I am seperated from God. I can not make my heart be sorry. I cannot find the tears. I can do good works, fast, pray, give alms and tithe. But I depend on the Holy Spirit and The intercession of Our Lady, Holy Theotokos, to grant to me true repentance.
I can love my family and friends. I can love those who bless me and do me good. I need the Holy Spirit to teach me to love those who hate me or despise me.
I depend on the Holy Spirit to teach me to love God. Not my image of who I think He is. Not for His gifts. Not for His blessings. For Him. For His glory.
I can ask someone else. :)
 

Stinky

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Acts 11:18 NIV
When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised God, saying, " So then God has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life."

2 Timothy 2:25 NIV
Those who oppose him he must gently instruct in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth.
 
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sestir

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Probably a really good idea.
On the other hand, Acts 5:31 (Stephanus), which you posted a couple of seconds before my reply, helps me a lot.
On third hand, it is not really topic for the thread, so I will proceed with reading Hieromonk Gregorios and see if he has any clues for me.
 

xariskai

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From what I've learned so far, in Orthodoxy a state of humbleness is usually required when praying, but here is what this Protestant guy say on this matter: http://instagr.am/p/CD_nalcom6T/
What are your views on this matter? Please share some wisdom of the Orthodox Church elders and saints.
John 15:7: "If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."

Humility and Prayer:
"When human beings completely obliterate their own egotism and reach the state of Theosis, or union with God... then whatever they wish is what God wishes and it is given. There is little separation between the individual ego and God, between the will of the perfected, Christified individual and the will of God. Such is the state... that elder Paisios reached after his lifetime of ascetical struggles... that he became a purified vessel through which the blessings and energies of the Holy Spirit were channeled" (Fr. Maximos of Mt. Athos, disciple of St. Paisios, cited in Markides, Kyriacos C., Mountain of Silence, p. 10).
 

LucianNae

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Humility and Prayer:
"When human beings completely obliterate their own egotism and reach the state of Theosis, or union with God... then whatever they wish is what God wishes and it is given. There is little separation between the individual ego and God, between the will of the perfected, Christified individual and the will of God. Such is the state... that elder Paisios reached after his lifetime of ascetical struggles... that he became a purified vessel through which the blessings and energies of the Holy Spirit were channeled" (Fr. Maximos of Mt. Athos, disciple of St. Paisios, cited in Markides, Kyriacos C., Mountain of Silence, p. 10).
Yes, that is true, but what about prayer before one reaches the state of Theosis? What about prayer of those who have worldly desires that are not sinful, such as the desire to be healthy, to find a spouse, a family and a well-paid job in order to be able to support it (the family, that is) and to also help the poor?
 

Ainnir

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Do you think it is not God’s will for us to be healthy, have a holy marriage, provide for our families, and help the poor?
 

Ainnir

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From what I've learned so far, in Orthodoxy a state of humbleness is usually required when praying, but here is what this Protestant guy say on this matter: http://instagr.am/p/CD_nalcom6T/
What are your views on this matter? Please share some wisdom of the Orthodox Church elders and saints.
Dude lost me halfway through the video. The first shall be last and the last first. Or as my childhood pastor said, God is not a cosmic bellhop.

It is not wrong to pray for a spouse, a steady job, the ability to help the poor, or to heal from illness. We have prayers for all of these things. But the spirit behind these prayers is very different from the one it seems like that guy was leading toward.

Think of it this way: if God Himself has the humility to Incarnate as a man, to be disdained by the people He created, to be cursed, spat upon, beaten, mocked, crucified, and pierced not only without anger or protest but also with genuine love and forgiveness for his accusers and assailants... if God Himself has this much humility, who are we to refuse to have the comparatively small amount of humility it takes to bow our heads and petition God according to His will?
 

xariskai

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Note the pastor linked in the OP, Gregory Dickow, is part of the so-called Word of Faith cult which developed from the writings of which is considered heretical not only by we Orthodox but also the vast majority of Protestants; weekly guests at his church include Kenneth Copeland, Jesse Duplantis, Creflo Dollar, and other likely suspects.

For an index and summary of Protestant critiques of this aberrant movement see the following Protestant website "from an Evangelical point of view" https://www.apologeticsindex.org/4914-word-faith-movement

Although I have thus far confined replies to the original post's question about how Orthodox Saints and the Orthodox Church view prayer and humility if LucianNae wishes we can get into the weeds more specifically with the Word of Faith movement, which is an abhorrent and heretical cult of the absolute worst kind not just in my opinion but in the opinion of the vast majority of the contemporary Christian world, Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Protestant.

"...my old Pastor Gregory Dickow spent 20 minutes every Sunday talking about tithing and sacrificing to get the church built, which went from a cost of $9 million up to $25 million. The church was told by Dickows wife Grace that we should get 2nd or 3rd jobs, put off buying a car, no vacations to help while they lived in a gated community, had several luxury cars/trucks, and lived like kings. They brought in weekly guests like Creflo Dollar, Oral Roberts, Jesse Duplantis, and Kenneth Copeland who preached the prosperity gospel of using God as an ATM" (former member of Dickow's church comment @ article "Religious Leaders are the Satanic Wolves Paul Warned About").

John 15:7: "If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."

Humility and Prayer:
"When human beings completely obliterate their own egotism and reach the state of Theosis, or union with God... then whatever they wish is what God wishes and it is given. There is little separation between the individual ego and God, between the will of the perfected, Christified individual and the will of God. Such is the state... that elder Paisios reached after his lifetime of ascetical struggles... that he became a purified vessel through which the blessings and energies of the Holy Spirit were channeled" (Fr. Maximos of Mt. Athos, disciple of St. Paisios, cited in Markides, Kyriacos C., Mountain of Silence, p. 10).
Yes, that is true, but what about prayer before one reaches the state of Theosis? What about prayer of those who have worldly desires that are not sinful, such as the desire to be healthy, to find a spouse, a family and a well-paid job in order to be able to support it (the family, that is) and to also help the poor?
Yes these are indeed wonderful things to pray for. I would not dissuade anyone from praying for anything. N
The difference with regard to what Fr. Maximos affirms with regard to Theosis is not so much about praying but praying and knowing.

If we do not possess such knowledge we still, of course, ask, and, leaving contingencies of answered prayers aside, our confidence is that God will grant such petitions, or something better, even if the latter from our limited perspective may sometimes be impossible for us to fathom.

However in saying that I do not mean to overlook as some today do that there are contingencies to answered prayer.
There are many examples of this throughout the Bible, e.g.
Psalm 66:18: "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me"

Compare:
 

LucianNae

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I don't understand how to pray. 😓
 

Stinky

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I don't understand how to pray. 😓
Me either.
To answer your question as to what my views are on the subject.... I do so anyway. And I trust in God's goodness. I rely heavily on Our Lady, Most Holy Theotokos, the holy martys, saints, and holy angels for intercession.
 

Luke

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7 “And when you are praying, do not use thoughtless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. 8 So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

9 “Pray, then, in this way:

‘Our Father, who is in heaven,

Hallowed be Your name.

10 Your kingdom come.

Your will be done,

On earth as it is in heaven.

11 ‘Give us this day our daily bread.

12 ‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.

13 ‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. -- Matthew 6:7-13, New American Standard Bible.
 
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Perhaps reading the Lord’s commandments ( Matthew 19:16-19, Matthew 22:36-40, Matthew 6:1-4, Matthew 7:12 etc.), then read 1 Timothy 2:1-3 & then Matthew 6:5-13 might be helpful.

Reading the Didache might also be helpful:

 
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xariskai

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From what I've learned so far, in Orthodoxy a state of humbleness is usually required when praying
I don't understand how to pray.
Here is something Christ said specifically about humility and prayer:

“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. But the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” -Luke 18:10-14

"This, then, is how you should pray..." -Matt 6:9

If you do not know how to pray would recommend beginning with the Lord's Prayer and The Jesus Prayer (similar to the prayer of the tax collector Jesus spoke of above and one of the most important mystical prayers of the Church)

1, The Lord's Prayer (Mat 6:5-14; Lk 11:1-4) -see the words posted above by Luke
2. The Jesus Prayer: https://orthodoxwiki.org/Jesus_Prayer
 

Ainnir

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I don't understand how to pray. 😓
Orthodox prayer is as much instruction and exercise as it is communication with God; the more we do it, the more we understand how to do it.
Consider finding a copy of "Beginning to Pray" by Fr. Anthony Bloom. Small book, challenging content. 🙂
 

Stinky

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I read/pray out loud from my Psalter for Prayer which has introductory prayers, psalms, closing prayers, then intercessor prayers.
Some here had reccomended it and I'm very grateful.
Then I just talk to God throughout the day. I talk as if He is right next to me, which He is. And In me too. I dont know if I'm doing anything right.
As time goes by it seems my prayers change. Sometimes I get tired of myself asking for anything because God already knows what we need. I have a habit to tell God what to do. Heal this one, give this one a job, do this and that. I still catch myself. Like, how do i know what is best for the outcome of salvation? So my Priest told me to pray for people by asking for God to lead them on the path of righteousness. That seems good. No job? No health? Divorce? Anguish? Grieving? Pain? In all, Lord, lead these on the path of righteousness. So I pray that way now and often just say, " Remember Ken and please give what You know to be best, leading him on the path of righteousness."
Then, I find my mind free to just be in His presence sometimes with the Jesus prayer ( Lord Jesus Christ Son of God have mercy on me a sinner) and by naming all the things for which I'm grateful. Instead of, "gimme gimme gimme!" Im trying to praise Him and thank Him continually as possible.
Sometimes Im overwhelmed by His holiness and love. Then I repent of my sins, pride, and my stubborness and whiney attitude.
Overall, I still dont know how to pray.
I hear of the prayer of the heart and bringing the mind and heart together. I hear of stages and levels of prayers. I dont know.
But God is good. And I keep turning my face to Him.
That's prayer: Turning our face to God.
 
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