Prayer – Day One
by Deb Weakly
“The First great and primary business to which I ought to attend to every day is to have my soul happy in the Lord.” George Mueller
1. Call your prayer partner for your 10 Minute Prayer Call. Keep trying to connect until you are able to pray together. What a blessing it is to have someone who cares and can pray with you! Done:______
2.It’s time to meet with Jesus! Gather everything you need for a lovely quiet time this morning. Read Luke 11:1-13 and Matthew 6:8-15. Write Matthew 6:9-13 in your journal.
In Luke 11, we see one of our Lord’s own disciples asking Jesus to teach them how to pray. It is interesting to me to see that this disciple didn’t assume how to pray, instead he asked the One who knows how to pray more than anyone else on this earth. What a wise disciple! In answer, Jesus gives His disciples the precious Lord’s Prayer, the model for all believers, then and now. I think it is fitting to start our study on prayer by examining these precious words of Jesus.
The Lord’s prayer is so filled with goodness, but I do not think that Jesus gave it to us so that this is the only way we should pray. I believe the Lord loves all of the prayers of His people, in all nations, in all ways. I do not think He wanted us to have a “formula” per say, but a guide in the way that He prays, so that we can give form to our prayers.
So, with that said, I would like to cover the basics of the Lord’s Prayer and what it has meant to me and how I pray. As always, pray and ask the Lord to teach you how to pray as you read His Word. In Matthew 6:9-13 we find:
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name”- The first thing Jesus does is praise His Father. Worshipping God is always first! He is awesome and amazing and SO good! The first part of my prayers starts out by telling God how awesome and wonderful He is. I also thank Him for all of the wonderful blessings in my life. When I ask Him for something, for example, a good day writing for the Help Club, I always thank Him when He gives me something to say.
“Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven”- This prayer teaches us to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well, and it also reminds us to ask for God’s will. In my prayers, I always ask for every blessing I can possibly think of- wisdom, close relationships with my family, good health, safety, financial blessings, etc., but I also ask for a closer relationship with Jesus and a closer walk with Him for me and my family. Sometimes, difficulties bring us closer to Jesus, and we also live in a fallen world, so I know that some of my many prayers where I ask for blessings are trumped by God’s good, perfect will for me and my family. When I try to remember that God loves me and wants to give good gifts to me, it helps me to keep trusting Him when things don’t always go right, and difficulties come as they inevitable do. But believe me, I DO keep asking! I love the story that’s in Luke 11:5-13 about asking for bread at midnight, and asking in general. He wants us to keep asking, and keep asking, and not to give up. So, I ask A LOT!
And therefore, we keep asking and do not give up, but we continue to fervently pray that God’s Kingdom may “come” in its fullness, and that all created beings may bring their wills into harmony with God’s will. We are to seek God’s good, pleasing, perfect will above all else.
“Give us today our daily bread.”- God wants us to ask Him for our every need. In Luke 11:13 we see that God loves to give good gifts to His children. Think big about your God in your prayers, and make sure you remember to pray for others as well a yourself. Pray for people to be saved, healed, blessed, marriages to be strong, Christian prisoners to be set free. Pray for your family to put God first, and have a close relationship with each other. Ask God to help you to see your husband and children’s hearts and for you to love them all well. Seek God’s wisdom and knowledge so you can be the “Wise woman who builds her house, and not the foolish woman who tears hers down.” (Proverbs 14:1) Pray for help to be “quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.”(James 1:19) Also pray for your finances- for discounts at the store, self control in your spending, bills to go down, and for them to be paid off. Ask, ask, ask. Ask about everything!
“Forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven our debtors.”- In Luke 11:4 it says “Forgive us our sins for we forgive everyone who sins against us.” Wow! That’s amazing to think about forgiving everyone who has sinned against us. But, there you have it. We need to always seek forgiveness from God and others, and we also need to forgive everyone who has sinned against us. It’s not easy, for sure, but Jesus tells us to do it. So, every time I have my devo prayer time, before I take communion, or anytime the Holy Spirit convicts me of a sin, or bad thought, or unkind or gossipy word, or anything really that is against God’s Word, I always say “I’m sorry” to God. I like to try to keep my heart in a state of being aware of my sin, and confessing it to God. Now, are there times when, in my sinful state and with my sinful heart that I fail to confess? You betcha. I hate being so human, but I am. Sometimes, my heart is not turned to God, but I keep trying. God keeps working on me. That’s the beauty of being a Christ Follower, we keep trying and keep relying on God to help us to walk with Him in a way that is pleasing to Him. We don’t have to be good or try to please Him alone. He wants us to stay close and rely on Him.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”-This passage tells us to ask God to protect us from sinning and from the devil. There are many temptations which God says are common to man, but as far as me personally, I am sometimes tempted to not trust God, and to try to control my own circumstances instead of giving God control and letting him work. I also struggle with the fear of man and I worry far too much about pleasing people and what they think of me, but God is still working with me on this one. So I pray every day that God would help me and my family to obey Him, and not be tempted to sin. I also pray for protection from Satan.
So, here is a synopsis of some of the things I like to pray about. Please remember that there is no formula for your prayers. Prayer is simply talking to your Jesus, your God, who loves you more than you could ever know! You be you!
Prayer Faith Filled Idea #1- In your journal, pray and ask God to help you to write out some of your basic prayers today:
-Worship and praise God for who He is and what He means to you.
-Express thanks for all He has done for you and each answer to prayer.
-Always acknowledge God’s kingdom and His will above your own, but keep asking.
-Ask, ask, ask and keep asking! For yourself, your family and others. Remember, God is big! What do you want to ask Him for today?
-Always seek forgiveness from God and others. Ask God to show you where you’ve sinned and confess, remembering that He promises to be faithful to forgive us. Is there someone you’ve sinned against and need to ask forgiveness of them?
-Pray and ask for help when you are tempted to disobey God. Pray for protection from the devil’s schemes.
Prayer – Day Two
by Deb Weakly
“Our praying needs to be pressed and pursued with an energy that never tires, a persistency which will not be denied, and a courage that never fails.”
1. Grab your Bible, your journal, pen, a candle, and a note card and go to the place where you meet with your Jesus.
2. Read Philippians 4:4-9. Write verses 6 and 7 in your journal. For deeper study, read all of the chapter.
What a beautiful passage of Scripture to encourage us to pray and trust God with everything in our lives! God loves us so much, and His wants us to come to Him and pray about every single thing that is troubling our hearts. He cares about our burdens and wants to lift every one of them off of our shoulders and onto His.
When my children were little, I was so stressed out about everything! I had a very difficult childhood and wasn’t raised in a Christian home, so I had no idea how to raise children to know Jesus, but had a burning desire in my heart to do so. I was so worried about somehow messing my children up, and the seemingly impossible task of raising kids to love God, that every night I would go into my daughter’s room, kneel down, cry and pray. I felt SO lost, and realized my inadequacies as a mom. It was then that I decided that the one thing I could do to help my situation and alleviate my fears was to pray. And pray I did! All the time! It brought me so much peace to know that I can’t do it myself and that God WANTS to help me!
About this time, I found Emilie Barnes’ idea of making a prayer binder and adapted it to my life. What a blessing this prayer binder has been to me! I would simply pray and ask God what He wanted me to pray regularly and wrote them down and prayed them each week. I also included personal prayers and ones I found in books such as “Prayers for a Mother’s Day” by Ruth Bell Graham.
Questions to Ponder: I shared that my greatest fear as a mom was that I didn’t know how to raise my children to love God. What is your greatest motherly concern for your children?
Write it in your journal and give this concern to the Lord, trusting it to His care.
Prayer Faith Filled Idea #2–
Tomorrow, we will start making our prayer binder. Start praying today and asking God for specific prayers for your family. If you are in the habit of journaling, take some time today to look over some prayers that are meaningful. Write all of the prayers the Lord shows you in your journal so you can put them into your binder.
Prayer – Day Three
by Deb Weakly
“Prayers are deathless. They outlive the lives of those who uttered them.”
1. Grab your Bible and read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 and write it in your journal.
What a wonderful exhortation from our Lord that tells us to be joyful, thankful and to ALWAYS keep praying!
Prayer is so powerful! I love the quote today from E.M. Bounds because it speaks about our prayers outliving us and being timeless! We never know who will be affected by our faithful prayers for others. We could be affecting someone who will live 100 years from now!
When we pray we are sending a message forward to a time we will not see.
Our prayers transcend time and keep going, even for our great-great grandchildren and beyond. Think about it! We can pray now for those in our lineage to know Christ, and to serve Him with their whole hearts.
Faith- Filled Idea #3- Today, your assignment is to start your prayer binder. My prayer binder has meant so much for me over the years because when I pray I feel as if I have hope! Everything that concerns me or that I worry about can be placed in the hands of the One who alone can save, do miracles and work in the lives of those I pray for.
In your last prayer devo, you started praying about which prayers the Lord would have you put in your prayer binder. Keep those handy as you are beginning to form your binder.
For instructions on how to make a prayer binder, go to the Special Topics section on the HCFM’s side bar.