Friday, November 22, 2013

Why don’t I pray more?

Why don’t I pray more?

Max Lucado has written,

“God's solution is a prayer away! Prayer is the window that God has placed in the walls of our world. Leave it shut and the world is a cold, dark house. But throw back the curtains and see His light. Open the window and hear His voice. Open the window of prayer and invoke the presence of God in your world.
There are so many promises is the bible about the power of prayer (Philippians 4:6-7; Matthew 7:7; Matthew 18:19; 21:22; Mark 11:24; Luke 11:13; John 14:13-14; 16:23; Romans 10:12; Hebrews 4:16; 1 John 5:14-15).

So, why don’t I pray more?

I may not be able to explain how prayer works but I can explain that prayer was modeled for me in scripture over and over again. Think for a minute about praying people in the Bible.

  • Abraham prayed for a city (Gen. 18:20-33).
  • Moses prayed for God’s people (Exod. 32:11-13).
  • Joshua prayed for guidance (Josh. 7:1-26).
  • Hannah prayed for a child (1 Sam. 1:1-20).
  • Solomon prayed for wisdom (1 Kings 3:1-15).
  • The prophets of God prayed, too (1 Kings 18:36-39; Jer. 20:7-18).
  • The early church prayed fervently (Acts 1:14, 3:1, 4:31, 6:4, 10:9, 12:5, 13:3, 14:23, 16:25, 20:36, 28:8).
  • The apostle Paul prayed for believers (e.g., Rom. 1:8, 1 Cor. 1:4).
  • Jesus, of course, modeled a life of prayer (e.g., Matt. 26:36-46; Mark 1:35; Luke 4:42; John 17).
The point is that God’s people have prayed and God’s Word recorded it for us. There must be a reason for this.

So, why don’t I pray more?

So prayer matters, and God’s people must be a praying people.

Too often, though, we don’t pray until we feel like we have to – that is, until we face a situation we can’t handle on our own. There is a better way.

God is up to something very special at New Beginnings Church. But I can’t help but think He want to do more. Something powerful. Something inexplicable. I believe that the future will be even more powerful if we would bathe each day in genuine heartfelt prayer.

Join me in this simply and strategic 10 days of prayer? Find time each of the next ten days to pray these ways for New Beginnings Church.

  1. Day 1 – Pray for your church staff and leaders. If you are the only staff member, pray for yourself and the other spiritual leaders (e.g., deacons, elders). Pray that all will be holy, passionate, and evangelistic.
  2. Day 2 – Pray for our D Group leaders. Ask God to give them a caring heart, a teaching ability, and a prayerful spirit. Pray they will willingly reproduce themselves and multiply their groups.
  3. Day 3 – Pray for the children in your church. Pray your church will give them such grounding in the gospel they will always think about Christian faithfulness when confronted with the world’s options. Ask God to raise up a next generation of missionaries from your children.
  4. Day 4 – Pray for the students in your church. In particular, pray for those whose parents do not attend. Then, pray the students will be vibrant witnesses in their schools. Ask the Lord to give them strength in temptation.
  5. Day 5 – Pray for the couples in your church. Lift them up by name, and pray for their marriages. Pray that each husband will love his wife as Christ loves the church (Eph. 5:25). Intercede especially for those couples you know are struggling.
  6. Day 6 – Pray Ephesians 6:18-20 and Colossians 4:2-4 for ten leaders in your church. Ask God to give them boldness in sharing, clarity in message, and others ready to hear. A few members with a thirst for evangelism can spark an awakening.
  7. Day 7 – Pray for new believers in your church. Ask the Lord to raise up leaders who would led them to become disciples. Pray that they would find a redemptive, missional community (D Group) to pattern vibrant faith for them.
  8. Day 8 – Pray for your church to be a Great Commission-minded church. Commit to pray for an unreached people group []around the world. If your congregation is already going to the nations, pray for more members to go.
  9. Day 9 – Pray for more laborers in your church (Matt. 9:35-38). Jesus told us to pray that way, so be obedient to His command. You may find you seldom struggle in finding workers when you pray this way.
  10. Day 10 – Pray for our next Sunday service. Ask God to make Himself known in such a powerful way in response to your prayers that your members recognize a difference.
Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble. But since the power of prayer is in the One who hears it and not in the one who says it, our prayers do make a difference.

This thanksgiving season lets make our voices be heard to God.

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