According to the Pew Research Center, 55 percent of Americans say that they pray every day. However, their prayers may not be the kind of prayers that Jesus taught the disciples to pray.
From the Expositor’s Bible: Colossians and Philemon, written in 1902:
Many people’s notion is that prayer is urging our wishes on God, and that His answer is giving us what we desire. But true prayer is the meeting in harmony of God’s will and man’s, and its deepest expression is not, Do this, because I desire it, O Lord; but, I do this because Thou desirest it, O Lord.
We read example after example of God’s people praying:
• In prayer, they offered thanks (Daniel 6:10).
• They prayed for forgiveness (Numbers 21:17) and for mercy (Deuteronomy 9:26).
• They prayed in barrenness (1 Samuel 1:10) and in plenty (1 Chronicles 29:9-11).
• They prayed that God would open the eyes of some (2 Kings 6:17) and shut the eyes of others (2 Kings 6:18).
• God’s people asked for boldness (Acts 4:29).
• They interceded for others (1 Samuel 12:23).
• They prayed for healing (2 Kings 20:2), for protection (Ezra 8:21), for success (Nehemiah 1:11).
• They prayed in whispers (Isaiah 26:16), and they also cried out (Psalm 28:2).
◦ Jesus was in the habit of praying. And if it was important to him, it’s important to us. If 2020 is going to be the year that set you on a powerful, positive, course of a Better Life Experience then we need to Practice Prayer and Meditation. There is a Better Way to Pray.... its important to know the Model and understand the Method!
Though we can find many lessons throughout the Bible on how to pray, here are just three elements of prayer that we can put into practice now.
There is the model of prayer
There is the method of prayer.
Step 1 : Set time to pray.
You must practice steadfastness in prayer & Meditation.
Successful athletes know what it means to pursue a goal with earnestness. Practicing day after day, week after week, they press on in spite of weather and weariness. They manage their time and make daily practice a priority. Everything else gets rescheduled so that they can continue to struggle towards their goal.
In Colossians, we’re told to approach prayer the same way:
Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. (Colossians 4:2)
The Amplified Bible classic edition translates the same verse (col.4:2) like this:
Be earnest and unwearied and steadfast in your prayer [life], being [both] alert and intent in [your praying] with thanksgiving
.....Earnest, unwearied, and steadfast describes Jesus’ prayer life throughout his earthly ministry. Imagine how revolutionary our prayer lives would be if they were described the same way.
Prayer must include attention and intention.
Step 2 : We Must Pray with Intention:
what is intention?
Intention is a mental state that represents a commitment to carrying out an action or actions in the future. Intention involves mental activities such as planning and forethought
To be intentional is to
Practice Watchfulness in Prayer:
As a pastor/ Spiritual Teacher, I can tell when the people I’m teaching are paying attention and when they’re allowing their minds to wander.
I can bring the most interesting and interactive lesson online or in a live teaching setting, but focus is something that only you as the students yourselves can bring.
God calls us to a prayer life marked by “watchfulness” or attentiveness.
This includes both intention and attention.
Jesus was clear that he expected this level of concentration and focus from his disciples in the Garden of Gethsemane, and we can assume he asks a similar level of watchfulness from us as well:
Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. (Mark 14:38)
One is internal another is external.
Vine’s Expository Dictionary describes “watch” as “vigilance and expectancy as contrasted with laxity and indifference.”
A prayer life marked by watchfulness is one where the distractions of sleepiness, anxieties, and conflicts are replaced by attentiveness and focus.
Again One is internal another is external.
The Method: The Invocation!
Invoke the feelings and the emotions and the energy of gratitude when you pray be thankful for what you’re believing God for feel it now as if it’s already done.
A grateful heart keeps us humble. Expressing thanks during prayer reminds us that all we have is from God, and not because of our own efforts.
God’s Word tells us that thankfulness or gratitude is to be found in all our prayers:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)
Practice prayer today.
Pastor A.L. Blue
Senior Pastor/ Founder
BETTER LIFE EMPOWERMENT MOVEMENT. Inc.
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