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Keeping a lively Prayer Life

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What is prayer?

– quite simply prayer is talking to GodCaleb program 135

“This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.”

I John 4:14-15

 

 

what is NOT prayer?

– not God talking to me

– not getting new revelation from God

– not turning on the heavenly vending machine

– not a way of connecting with my inner self

– not a formulaic recitation (although a prayer may be memorized or written)

– not a way of securing “my destiny” through introspection

 

 

In my prayer life, what should I do?

(of first importance is to always keep in mind who you are talking to, The King Eternal of the Universe – what is He like?)

– 1ST, remember that…

God is Holy                          set apart in every aspect of His greatness and goodness

God is omniscient               all knowing                  He knows what we need

 God is omniaural                 all hearing                   He hears all the time

God is omnipresent            present everywhere     He is always near

God is omnisagacious       all wise                          He knows what is best

God is omnipotent             all powerful                 He can do whatever…

God is personal                  one on one                   He is interested in you

 

…and then remember that prayer is an act of WORSHIP

{worship is the expression of my adoring submission to God. prayer is one of the ways we expression of worship to God}

The primary focus of the soul at prayer is on the person of God and what He wants rather than on itself.  This is more than its duty.  Prayer finds its unending enjoyment in focusing on God and all that He is.  “Why prayer is a Christian’s work,” some say.  Indeed it is, but not a laborious work for those who seek to know God.  True prayer rises above its labors to become delightful worship.  After all, we do not seek after what we do not delight in and where there is no delight there is no worship.  To delight after God by prayer is worship and to delight after God by prayer is know and speak the language of worship.  Whether short or long, a glance or a gaze, prayer is worship when the soul supremely seeks God and not its own.  Worship is the lingering focus of the soul at prayer.

 

2ND, give worshipful effort to…

– fill your prayers with God’s words {as found in His Word}

live in constant communion with God – keep the line of communication always open

confession, adoration, petition and intercession

 

– match your requests to God’s principles and commands {as found in His Word}

 

– exercise faith by letting God work on His time table –

part of the work of prayer is waiting on God

 

 – exercise faith by believing that whatever God does will be best in the end

 

– exercise faith by obeying (doing) what He has made clear to do –

{it is a lot easier to pray if you obey}

 

– seek to always be learning what God is like and what God likes so that your prayers will be in keeping with His infinite Holy character

 

 

 

 

a few resources

Valley of Vision: a collection of Puritan prayers, compiled by Arthur Bennett 

How to Pray by W. Graham Scroggie (one of my favorites)

A Woman of Prayer, by Betty Henderson (one of Kristi’s favorites)

prayers of the Bible – Nave’s Topical Bible

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/nave/bible.html?term=PRAYER

 Praying the Attributes of God by Rosemary Jensen, Kregel Publications, 2002

 

 

 

 

 

a few tips

  1. ask God to teach you to pray
  2. keep a simple journal of prayer request – family, church, friends, needing Christ, me
  3. date when a prayer is answered
  4. encourage others by letting them know you are praying for them
  5. pray with others about specific concerns
  6. attend and participate in church Prayer meetings
  7. memorize verses that give an important prayer promise
  8. memorize verses that teach an important prayer principle
  9. ask God to keep your heart tender toward His wants
  10. ask God to lead people across your path who need to hear the Gospel
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