A friend recently asked me to come up with some thoughts and scriptures for a prayer group and below are some thoughts that came to mind as considered how prayer has been such a large part of my life over the years. And below a picture from one of the most peaceful places I have ever had the privilege to enter into prayer!
Prayer in it’s simplest definition is a conversation with God. As a rule, the best conversations are when we are in the presence on one we know well and with whom we feel comfortable. When we have a grasp of who a person is and a respect and trust for them, it is much easier to have great conversations! For this reason, I personally believe one of the foundational keys to prayer is to learn what we can about who God is through His Word and through time spent with Him in prayer. The more we understand about His character and who He says we are as believers in His Word, the better our prayer life can be. Can we ever fully understand our great and marvelous God? No, we can never fully understand fully who God is but we can learn a tremendous amount about Him and His character through the Bible. We can also learn much about God’s relationship with mankind. As we learn more we find, no longer does prayer have to be a religious act, duty or obligation. prayer at it’s best is as easy and natural as sitting down and chatting with a beloved friend. This is not to say we loose perspective of God’s holiness or sovereignty but that we understand that in His great love He has granted us as beleivers a wonderful privilege to come before Him as daughters and sons of the King.
A second key that is helpful is to know who we are In Christ. We are not a surprise to God. In Psalm 139, we find a lot of information about how God views us. Verses 13-18 tell us how He carefully and remarkably made each one of us and that ALL our days were planned and written in His book before a single one began. He knew all about us before we were ever here; everything we would ever do-either good or bad. The in Ephesians 2:10 we are told we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared ahead of time, so that we should/could walk in them. It is no mistake the timing we are walking this planet earth! It is part of God’s great plan! This is a wonderful truth that for many is hard to grasp and this is why we need to learn who God says we are; this will help us begin to understand our individual purpose and we can begin to walk and pray in confidence of who we are in Christ.
Psalm 103:17 But from eternity to eternity the Lord’s faithful love is toward those who fear Him, and His righteousness toward their grandchildren.
Deuteronomy 7:9 Know that Yahweh, your God is God, the faithful God who keeps His gracious covenant loyalty for a thousand generations of those who love His commands.
Jeremiah 9:24 But the one who boasts should boast in Me- that I am Yahweh, showing faithful love, justice, and righteousness on the earth, for I delight in these things. This is the Lord’s declaration.
Psalm 139; 1-16
Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I stand up;
You understand my thoughts from far away.
You observe my travels and my rest;
You are aware of all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue,
You know all about it, Lord.
You have encircled me;
You have placed Your hand on me.
This extraordinary knowledge is beyond me.
It is lofty; I am unable to reach it.
Where can I go to escape Your Spirit?
Where can I flee from Your presence?
If I go up to heaven, You are there;
if I make my bed in Sheol, You are there.
If I live at the eastern horizon
or settle at the western limits,
even there Your hand will lead me;
Your right hand will hold on to me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me,
and the light around me will be night”—
even the darkness is not dark to You.
The night shines like the day;
darkness and light are alike to You.
For it was You who created my inward parts;
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You
because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made.
Your works are wonderful,
and I know this very well.
My bones were not hidden from You
when I was made in secret,
when I was formed in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw me when I was formless;
all my days were written in Your book and planned
before a single one of them began.