How often do we forfeit something that already belongs to us when we choose not to pray? Do we recognize that prayer is a unique opportunity to commune with the heavenly Father and be intimately involved in others’ lives? What if we viewed prayer as an essential (first, fundamental, important) discipline? An offensive weapon in the spiritual battle that is at work all around us?
For many of us, prayer is a last resort. We try to keep powering through until circumstances cause us to stop in our tracks and to acknowledge we really don’t have any ability to control an outcome. We can’t muster up strength or manipulate a situation to gain that control.
The quicker we realize that the power in prayer is because of Who we call out to, we will be begin to see that there is much purpose in prayer and a great need for believers to participate in this privilege.
Prayer should be our first response. Living with this priority actively displays (to others, but most importantly to our own soul) that we are utterly dependent on the Lord for all things. We might acknowledge that as the “ideal” or even know that that’s how it should be; but the implementation of praying first is much harder to put into practice. It takes an intentional effort, but also it’s not something we do alone. God has given us His Spirit to teach us what we ought to pray (Romans 8:26-27). What encouragement that is for us born of Jesus!
Over the past few months, our team has been studying Ephesians and it has been a timely reminder for us to place a strong emphasis on prayer, and determine to make it a priority. Even when prayer doesn’t seem to make sense or “fit” into our day’s schedule, prayer has eternal purpose. So in addition to giving a list of prayer requests that we have, we want to share just a little of what we have been learning.
Paul clearly answers many of the 5Ws and H (Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?) about prayer, especially in the final chapter of his letter to the Ephesians. Let’s see what we can learn by simply observing these few verses.
With ALL prayer and petition pray at ALL times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with ALL perseverance and petition for ALL the saints, and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.(Ephesians 6:18-20)
–What did you learn about prayer?
–Who does Paul instruct us to pray for?
–What does he tell us to do? (Look at the underlined instructions.)
–How are we to pray? In what manner?
–When do we need to pray?
–What do we pray for?
–Why should we pray for others?
As you considered these few verses, were there truths that stood out to you personally? How do these verses challenge or encourage you in your prayer life? It is always good to reflect and meditate on what God might be showing you as you read His Word.
Application of Scripture to your everyday circumstances is the kind of life transformation we desire for you each time you come face to face with God’s Word. We consider it an honor to walk alongside you and to pray for you and with you for all the saints! Would you join us in praying for:
–Preparations for our summer events (ENGAGE Internship & EQUIP Boot Camp).
–The 7 individuals who will be participating in this summer’s internship. (Be sure to check the blog in April for more about each intern!)
–Those who will be attending EQUIP Boot Camp, that they will be transformed by God’s Word and experience unity.
It is our prayer like the apostle Paul for peace be to you, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with incorruptible love. (Ephesians 6:23-24)