Do you ever feel like your prayers are just another thing on your “to do” list? Okay, did it. Now move on to the myriad of tasks calling your name. Or perhaps you have been meaning to get around to praying more and it just hasn’t happened yet. Sometimes I think we just forget or don’t notice how powerful prayer is, especially if our lives are going along without major hassles or hurts. However, Jesus told his disciples to be watchful and pray. Why?
1 John 5:14: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.”
Wow! This is a strong promise. We will be heard! Just the idea that I will be heard when talking to God excites me. Jesus also tells us to pray for other reasons.
James 5:16: “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. NIV
We are made righteous by trusting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, accepting His grace to forgive our sins. According to James this makes our prayers both ____________________ and ____________________ .
We came to know Jesus through prayer, asking Him into our lives and accepting his Lordship to forgive our sins and give us a new life in Him.
If our prayers are according to God’s will, powerful and effective, because he hears us, what should we pray about?
Philippians 4:6: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God.” NIV We should pray about ___________________________________________
We can go to our Creator-Father about all our problems, doubts, fears, insecurities, worries, etc. We can give them to Him in an act of faith to solve in His perfect way.
Jesus also asks us to confess in prayer when we fall short- when we sin- and ask for forgiveness.
John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. NIV
This may be a good time to ask God to search your heart for anything you might need to ask His forgiveness and to bring to Him. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Jesus asks us not to just focus on ourselves in prayer, but also for others. Please read the following scriptures and list who they describe we should lift up in prayer.
|1 Thessalonians 3:12-13|
|1 Timothy 2:1-2|
These are just a few examples of people Jesus tells us to pray for. Read what Jesus says about strangers and summarize.
Hebrews 13:2, Matthew 25:32 ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
To me, praying for strangers would be a sacrificial act of love. In my blog, “The Powerful Present from Perceptive People” a couple of strangers took the time prayed for me. This was many many years ago and to this day I believe this was a powerful and effective conduit to my salvation story.
It encourages me to try to be sensitive and on the lookout for when to pray for others.
We have just touched on the power of prayer. There is much more Jesus and his disciples wrote or spoke on the subject, but for today remembering to pray about our needs and to also pray for others, including strangers, is an awesome beginning.
Colossians 2:7 “Therefore, just as you have received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him, established in the faith as you were taught and overflowing with thankfulness.”
Please take a minute now to thank the Lord for at least three blessings you have recently experienced. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Jesus, Thank you for this humbling experience of talking with others about our amazing opportunity to speak to you in prayer. Thank you for teaching us and encouraging us to pray. I now pray for each and every person who reads this Bible study that they will be blessed as they commune with you in prayer. Thank you, Jesus. In Your precious name, Amen.