“My whole being follows hard after You and clings closely to You; Your right hand upholds me.”
– Psalm 63:8 (Amplified Bible)
What is Prayer?
- An encounter with God; entering into His presence.
- Pursuing God with all your heart, mind and soul. – Matthew 22:37
- “Intentional, concentrated, regular effort to create space for God.” – Wasting Time with God
- Prayer is the action that I’m letting go of myself and fully trust in Him.
- How hungry are you for God? Your answer will be revealed in your prayer time!
Brother Lawrence Quotes (The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence)
- He served as a lay brother in a Carmelite monastery in Paris in which he was the cook for many years.
- “That there needed neither art nor science for going to God, but only a heart resolutely determined to apply itself to nothing but Him, or for His sake, and to love Him only.”
- “That it was a great delusion to think that the times of prayer ought to differ from other times; that we are as strictly obliged to adhere to God by action in the time of action by prayer in its season.”
Some of us are spiritually anorexic. We choose to not eat of God’s Word, resulting in spiritual starvation. We need to proclaim God’s Word in Prayer. Why? God is always the same. Therefore, knowing God facilitates our trust in Him; it reminds us of His promises, which we are to declare. What are the results? – A deeper connection with God.
Weak Knowledge of the Word = Weak Prayer
Knowing God = Bold prayer (Hebrews 4:16)
John 14:14 says, “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”
The Power in Prayer – 6 Reasons to Pray
1. Prayer Is a Command
- Prayer is not an option. For the believer, prayer is a command.
- We must pray for others. It is a sin when we don’t pray for others. – I Samuel 12:23
- I Thessalonians 5:17, we are told to “pray without ceasing.” In Colossians 4:2, we are to: “Continue steadfastly in prayer.”
2. Prayer Gives Us Access to the Expert
- God is our creator; He knows what we need. – Isaiah 40:28
- Prayer is right and proper. Jesus uses a parable to teach us about perseverance. – Luke 18:1:1-8 (The Widow & The Judge)
- Jesus is our counselor; He is our lifeline! – Isaiah 9:6
- Unfortunately, some of us go to others for help instead of God.
- This is what the Lord says: “Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans, who rely on human strength and turn their hearts away from the Lord.They are like stunted shrubs in the desert, with no hope for the future. They will live in the barren wilderness, in an uninhabited salty land.” – Jeremiah 17:5-6
3. Gifts are Developed and Blessings Pour Down
- Prayer is a medium through which God imparts His gifts and blessings.
- Mat. 7:7-11 – Ask, Seek, Knock
- Mat 21:22 – Believe and Receive
- James 1:5 – God gives wisdom to those who ask
4. Prayer Is Essential to Victory
- Ephesians 6:10-18 discusses the pieces of the armor, which is largely the Word of God. Three times He tells us that by means of this armor, we will be able to resist or stand against the Devil.
- Paul later states in Ephesians 6:18 – “with all prayer and supplication praying at all seasons in the Spirit, and watching thereunto in all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.”
- Prayer is the essential ingredient to victory over the spiritual realm.
5. Prayer Is the Example of our Lord & the Early Church
- Jesus is our role model; He prayed – Hebrews 5:7
- Jesus prayed frequently – Mark. 1:35; Heb. 5:7
- The early Church was characterized by prayer – Acts 6:4; 12:5
6. Prayer Is the Channel for Spiritual Maturity
- The goal is to grow spiritually (eat solid food) – Hebrews 6:11-14
- It is the means by which we fight the spiritual warfare – Eph. 6:10-18
- It is the means to spiritual growth – Eph. 1:15-23; 3:14-21; Col. 1:9-14
- It is by means of prayer that we develop spiritual boldness – Acts 4:19-21; Eph. 6:18-19
- We obtain the salvation of the lost – Rom. 10:1
- We do the work of world evangelism – Mat. 9:37-38
- We receive deliverance from temptation, discouragement, ignorance or lack of wisdom, physical sickness, etc…
Proper Positions in Prayer
- It’s not the Body’s position that God sees, but the Heart’s position that’s important when we enter prayer.
- Preparing is important. Why? You are entering into the presence of the High King!
- Worship prepares the environment and our hearts.
The Word of God and Prayer go Together
- Word = Knowing God (who He is, His promises, His character)
- Prayer = Communicating with God (both talking and listening)
- Knowing God (His Word) strengthens our prayer (talks) because we believe who He is.
- Once you KNOW God, you will begin to understand that there is no such thing as usefulness prayer, but that the Lord wants you to “waste time” with him and not worry about the laundry list of things you need – you will simply acknowledge that he’s in control.
The Antidote for Busyness:
- Develop habit of contemplating on God first thing in the morning and the same at night.
- Set a fixed time for prayer time, allowing nothing to disturb that time with the Lord. He should come first.
- Consciously and intentionally seek to develop the spirit of prayer at all times; being in the presence of God.
- Memorize and recite Scripture (silently and audibly).
- Learn to stay in silence (hear God) and journal.
Rest in His Word: Mark 11:29
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” (NIV)
- How much do really KNOW God?
- What are some reasons that keep me from praying?
- One habit I will change today that will nurture my prayer time is ________________.
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