What Stops Prayer Cold
Sidlow Baxter said, "Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers."
What a privilege prayer is. But one thing that can stop prayer cold is unconfessed sin. In Isaiah 59:2 God says, "your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear."
As we receive God’s forgiveness, we need to forgive others. Jesus said, "If you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift" (Matthew 5:23–24).
There are some people you can’t reconcile with, no matter how hard you try. There will come a point where you have done what you can do. There will come a time when you say, "I tried. I did what Jesus told me to do. I went to that person and tried to resolve it, but they refused."
The Bible says, "If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men" (Romans 12:18). Guess what? It isn’t always possible. Some people just don’t want to be at peace. But at least you tried. You can come back to your Heavenly Father and say, "I apologized. I sought to clear the air."
But what about when someone has hurt you? Forgive them. When you hold all that unforgiveness inside, it eats you up. Refusing to forgive someone is like drinking rat poison and waiting for the rat to die. When you don’t forgive, you’re poisoned with a root of bitterness. Let it go. Forgive as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.