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Praying Purposefully

Ephesians 8:16; Various

Praying Purposefully

Ephesians 8:16 Various

Good evening and welcome to BCCC and our nightly devotional study.

Have you ever thought your prayers aren’t reaching God? Perhaps you feel like your prayers can’t even break through the ceiling of the room your praying in let alone reach the throne of God.

I recently had someone who told me that they have trouble staying awake when they say their prayers at night. I’ve had someone else confess that they feel their prayer life is stuck in a rut. And then someone else told me that they stopped praying because it “wasn’t doing them much good.”

The problem isn’t that God isn’t listening. It’s often that we pray colorless and lackluster prayers because we are not praying purposefully. That’s because we look as prayer as somewhat of a requirement. We feel like it’s something we have to do and so we kind of go on autopilot, sending empty prayers up to heaven that have no meaning. We’ve heard other people’s prayers and we’ve learned to imitate them. But what we imitate isn’t right because we don’t have the proper connection. We get stuck in a pattern of recited prayers instead of what it’s supposed to be.

We often think we have to pray before bed, before a meal, or when we are at church. But when we pray do we really mean it? Are we truly thankful for the food? Do we really thankful for the day… what does that mean anyway?

When the disciples heard Jesus pray they wanted to learn to pray like him. “Teach us to pray like you!” They said. That’s because Jesus talked to God in a very personal manner. God desires to have a relationship with us.

Jesus taught the disciples how to pray by giving them a model. Unfortunately many people have tried to use it more like a recipe by reciting the prayer instead of understanding what it’s about. The prayer is about personal communication with God that involves praise and adoration, thanksgiving, acknowledgement or blessings, request for others, request for ourselves, confession and repentance, and a submissive heart that is open to God. Praying is really how we connect with God.

When we start to pray with the purpose of connecting with God we should start praying intentionally and as a result, we will see things start to happen! Our prayer life changes for the better. And we grow in our faith.

Ephesians 6:18 - “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people” –

Matthew 21:22 - “And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”

Do you really believe that? When you ask God for help or for him to bring things into your life, do you really believe with all your heart that he will take care of things and act in the best interest for you? God has your best interest at heart, so trust that he knows what is best for your life and his plan will prevail

1 Peter 5:7 - “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”

Think about prayer as a text message to God. What do you really want to communicate to him? What are you really thankful for? What mighty acts has he done in your life? Think of how blessed you actually are and realize that things could actually be a lot worse. Thank God for those things. Tell him how much you appreciate what you have and ask him kindly to help you in difficult situations.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 - “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Trust God no matter what the circumstances are that you are going through. Send your prayers to heaven and mean it when you say that you trust God.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Dear Father in heaven, We truly thank you tonight for the blessings you have given to us. We thank you for the rain that waters the plants and fills our cisterns. We praise you that we are going to get the opportunity to worship and meet together this Sunday at church. And we thank you for getting us through these hard times with the Coronavirus outbreak. But most of all, Lord, we thank you for redeeming our lives with the blood of your Son. Because of Jesus we can have the kind of relationship with you that makes our prayers personal and meaningful. In Jesus’ name, Amen!

Here is one more verse for you tonight. Psalm 9:10 states, “And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.” Here is another good verse to memorize for our challenge this month. Let’s memorize 4 new verses by June 31th.

I found this app called Verses that helps you memorize the scriptures. Perhaps it would be a good tool for you and your family especially if you find it hard to memorize things. It uses games and repetition to help you learn. It’s free for the first month if you want to check it out.

I hope you will join us tomorrow night at 6pm for our Bible devotional. Good night and God bless you.

May 21, 20/ Preacher/ Ministers Minute/
Ministers Minute