Our first week of studying has gone quite well. I am happy to say that this week we have gone a little bit deeper into learning some in depth things about prayer. It has been a little hard, but all of us have managed to keep praying and trying our best to be consistent with prayer like we learned last week. This week we have learned about what things that we should pray for.
The first thing we studied this week was people in the Bible who consistently prayed and what they prayed for. Jesus, of course, is the first person we came across, and in Matthew 6:5-8, He commands us to not pray like the hypocrites or idolaters but to instead pray privately behind closed doors. So we reviewed the time and place that we personally will be spending time with God. My place that I chose was in a corner of my bedroom that I have made set apart, and I devoted at least 5-10 min. at 4:00pm every day to prayer. Sometimes I have exceeded my goal and other times not so much, but that is just the process of making a new habit. The next person we studied was David, a true prayer warrior at heart and the well known poet of the Bible. Psalm 55:16-17 told us that David prayed consistently three times a day (morning, noon and night). We found out also in Psalms 119:164 that David praised God seven times a day. Praising God seven times a day is a lot of praise! I realized how much I could be doing the same thing myself and how that would make me feel if I were doing that too. This realization gave me a boost of confidence to make sure that I make an effort to not only spend time with God more but to look for opportunities to praise Him. Another person who is similar to David in staying consistent with prayer is Daniel. Daniel 6:10-11 tells us that Daniel prayed three times a day, in front of a window, which faced Jerusalem. This reminded me how we previously made a special place and time to pray every day. Daniel picked a window facing Jerusalem because it was the closest place to where he used to worship God before King Nebuchadnezzar took him away from his home. So not like we have to face Jerusalem, but making sure we find a place that we feel brings us closer to God is the best choice to go with.
The second thing that we studied this week was specific things to pray for. One of the best times to pray is whenever you are struggling through something. We should not only pray through these times, but it is the best time to pray if you are struggling with prayer altogether. A major crisis, current temptations in sin, and stressful situations are good things to ask God to help you deal with. During those times it is wise to ask Him to help you grow and learn through these difficult times that you may be going through. Blessings is another good thing to pray for not just for yourself, but especially for others (Matthew 7:11). Praying for others is a good way to practice positive thinking and actions. It helps bring a body of believers together as one. Burdens is another thing that we should always bring to God. He asks us in Matthew 11:28 to bring our burdens and troubles to him so He can help us. Also keep in mind that we must remember to also thank God for helping us through these hard times not just ask him to help us through the hard times. “Rejoice in the Lord always…”(Philippians 4:4)!
At our group session at the end of the week. We discussed what order would be the most effective to pray these specific things. The Lord’s prayer helped us decide and our study gave us these four topics: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication (A.C.T.S.). In Matthew 6:9-10 Jesus opens up his prayer with praise to God. Also in Chronicles 29:10-13 David opened up his prayer with praise and continues to pray with praise and humility. These verses are examples of Adoration which is the first step in approaching God. The next step is to confess. Psalm 51:1-13 tells us that David prayed for repentance of his sin he committed with Bathsheba. He simply confessed what he did and asked for forgiveness. A good note we need to remember is that God knows everything already so don’t try to make excuses for sin. So when you confess something don’t explain why you did what you did just humbly confess and ask for forgiveness if you are sincerely sorry. After we have confessed and asked for forgiveness, we need to thank God. Our next step is to rejoice through Thanksgiving. Psalm 95:2-3 encourages us to come to God with thanksgiving, music, and song. We need to thank God for forgiving us, helping us through the hard times, and blessing us with his many blessings. The last and final step is Supplication. Supplication is the action of asking or begging for something earnestly or humbly. A good example of this is Matthew 6:13 “And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil”. In the Lord’s prayer Jesus asked God to help him against future temptations and trials that may occur. He asked God humbly and earnestly for this request. Matthew 7:7-11 also tells us to ask, seek and knock. If we do we will find peace and happiness in our supplication to God.
Thank you for joining me in this second week in learning how to pray. I hope that you have enjoyed this post and will be encouraged in prayer or to even start this study for yourself. What things have you prayed for this week? Where is the perfect place you like to pray? Please share in the comments below. I would love to read any ideas or opinions you may have on this subject. Coming Soon: Study Review Battle Plan for Prayer Week three! Thanks for Reading!