Monday, September 3, 2018

When We Don't Pray by Kimberly Burnette

Watch When We Pray

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people ~ 1 Timothy 2:1

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. ~ James 5:16

There are so many people in need, hurting, in trouble. How many people do you encounter in a day that need comfort and assurance? How many ask for help or prayer?  How many do you say you will pray for? How many do you actually pray for?

I know when I have a need, especially for a loved one, I ask for prayer. It’s nice that so many respond, but how many actually pray?

We all have great intentions, but if we don’t act on it, it’s unlikely we will. People these days say they will pray for you as easily as they say “God bless you.”

As Christians what do we do? When there are so many that need prayer, are we really doing people a service by saying we’ll pray and not doing it?

Each time we pray for someone it is such a blessing, for that person and for us. There are different approaches we can take to make sure we always pray:

1. Keep A List- Write down every prayer request and add it to your daily prayers.
2. Say A Short, Simple Prayer- Prayer doesn’t need to be long or eloquent. One sentence such as “Lord, please help Karen.” or “Father, please provide what Debbie needs” counts.
Remember, God already knows. Praying to the point can be done on one's own immediately after the encounter, or with the person needing prayer. Praying with the person can be such an encouragement.
3. Pray A Full Prayer Right Then- What a great way to help someone! I know how honored and important I feel when someone does that for me. Imagine what that could do for someone who is on the fence with their faith or someone who doesn't know Jesus yet!

None of us intentionally skip praying for someone else when we said we would. I know I've had times when I messed up. I try really hard to use one of the approaches listed above at all times so I don't miss out on doing something this important. I personally prefer to pray at the time I am asked, and usually either use approach #2 or #3.

Praying and seeking God's presence is so important. Praying for others is part of our prayer life. When we get busy, it is easy to skimp. What happens when we skimp on our prayer life? We place quantity over quality and what is of God becomes less of a priority. We become more distracted by much less important things that start to take the place of prayer and presence. And most importantly, we gradually move further and further away from God and holiness.

Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. ~ Jeremiah 29:12

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Reflect: How do you handle prayer requests or prayer commitments? If you need to use an approach to make sure you always honor your commitment to pray, which will you use?

Let us pray: Lord, thank you so much that we can lift each other up to You in prayer and you will always hear our prayers and answer. Thank you for prompting us to reach out and show Your love for others by praying for them, encouraging them and lifting them up. Help me Lord, to always honor my word that I will pray for someone, and even better to pray with them. Please give me the right words to pray. Let Your spirit speak in me and through me. You are so good God and I praise You! In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.

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