I hope you have been having a great week. I hope that God has been meeting with you and revealing His deep love for you through Jesus Christ.
Today, I’d like to talk a little bit about prayer.
Colossians 4:2 says, “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”
It’s a pretty straightforward command and yet, for many of us, it is difficult to keep.
Why is that?
In his book, “The Power of Personal Prayer”, Jonathon Graf lists several reasons why this is so.
1. Never learned how.
2. Loss of faith - we walked away from God and no longer talk with Him.
3. Disappointment - something we prayed fervently about did not come to pass and we gave up on God.
4. Get too busy with other things
5. Don’t see the need - If God knows everything, what difference will my prayer make?
6. Thwarted by Satan - The last thing our enemy wants us to do is to spend time with God in conversation and communion.
How important is prayer really? Can we get by if we have a so-so prayer life? Can we thrive in our faith with a so-so prayer life? Can our church make it without prayer?
Martin Luther said, “To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing."
A B Simpson said, “Prayer is the link that connects us with God.”
Prayer is fundamental to our Christian life. It is the one of the primary building blocks to all that we hope to build spiritually. It is the way we plug in to all that God has for us.
My own prayer life has been an ever-changing experience. Sometimes, I feel like I’m doing really well and other times I feel like I am failing miserably. Maybe the single most helpful and encouraging idea for me in regard to prayer is that Jesus is way more concerned about us being together than He is about me saying the right things in the right ways. He really likes being with me. And He really likes being with you.
Here are three things that might help you in your own prayer life.
1. Start from a Place of Devotion
2. Have a Posture of Attentiveness
3. Pursue a Practice of Thanksgiving
I love it when we can pray together. I encourage you to lean into your prayer times with your small groups, and with your families, and with your friends. Join one of the regular prayer meetings at the church. There is so much relationship with Jesus that we are missing when we don’t pray. Let’s be a people of prayer at ACC.
This weekend, I will be preaching on our fourth theme from the book of James: A faith that helps me filter what I say. James is quite blunt in his teaching, and it is both refreshing and challenging. I hope you can be there.
I hope you have a great weekend and that you continually sense God’s presence as well as His delight in you.
I love being your pastor.