A Prayer Template

When my oldest son was 6 or 7 years old, he asked if his friend, Harrison, who lived in our neighborhood could join us for dinner. At dinner as our usual custom was to pray before our meals. As my husband motioned for us all to bow in prayer, Harrison asked with a distorted face, “what is prayer?” We all looked at him stunned. I do not remember our direct answer to his question. I do remember feeling wounded that a young boy did not know the concept or purpose of prayer.

Harrison and his family moved out of the neighborhood not long after, but I never forgot that dinner. I often think of that dinner long ago when I hear others, young and old, discuss their prayer life or lack thereof.

Paul’s Prayer for the Colossians

The apostle Paul’s prayer for the Colossians is a template when praying for others who may not know Christ, new in their Christian faith, or for all of us who lose our way.

Colossians 1:9-12
9 For this reason we have not stopped praying for you since the day we heard about you. We ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through every kind of spiritual wisdom and insight. 10 We ask this so that you will live the kind of lives that prove you belong to the Lord. Then you will want to please him in every way as you grow in, producing every kind of good work by this knowledge about God. 11 We ask him to strengthen you by his glorious might with all the power you need to patiently endure everything with joy. 12 You will also thank the Father, who has made you able to share the light, which is what God’s people inherit.

“… Patiently endure everything with joy.”

There is the rub isn’t it? How do we patiently endure the financial hardships, depression, illness, loneliness, the heartache, and whatever else that causes us to fall to our knees in prayer and write furiously in our prayer journal?

What God has done through Christ

Colossians 1: 13, 19-22
13 God has rescued us from the power of darkness and has brought us into the kingdom of his Son, whom he loves. 14 His Son paid the price to free us, which means that our sins are forgiven.
19 God was pleased to have all of himself live in Christ. 20 God was also pleased to bring everything on earth and in heaven back to himself through Christ. He did this by making peace through Christ’s blood sacrificed on the cross.
21 Once you were separated from God. The evil things you did showed your hostile attitude. 22 But now Christ has brought you back to God by dying in his physical body. He did this so that you could come into God’s presence without sin, fault, or blame.

God knows my past. He knows my future.

Who else can know my past so intimately than God? Who can know my heart but God? If He knows my past then I am confident He knows my future too.  I no longer want to ignorantly react to this life as I have to all the chaos and confusion this world has presented me. So, I remind myself of Paul’s prayer to the Colossians that to patiently endure everything with joy is to trust God’s vision for my future.

Colossians 1:13
23 This is on the condition that you continue in faith without being moved from the solid foundation of the hope that the Good News contains.

The Apostle Paul’s duty is my duty too.

Colossians 1: 26-29
26 In the past God hid this mystery, but now he has revealed it to his people. 27 God wanted his people throughout the world to know the glorious riches of this mystery—which is Christ living in you, giving you the hope of glory.
28 We spread the message about Christ as we instruct and teach everyone with all the wisdom there is. We want to present everyone as mature Christian people. 29 I work hard and struggle to do this while his mighty power works in me.

My duty is not only to draw closer to God with those things that drop me to my knees in prayer, but help others draw closer to God too. I pray that God’s will and His presence be shown to me in mind, body and spirit with open eyes, ears and heart. I pray for others too that they may know that Christ can live within them giving them hope for their future. I pray this not only for those and unnamed circumstances listed on the back pages of my prayer journal and in my heart, but that I may show others in my attitude, my work and in my spoken words.

It is difficult even for the most faithful to endure all patiently with joy. I believe it is important to have quiet meditation throughout the day every day. It is why I carry my prayer journal with me.

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” James 4:8

reshaping.jpg

My Prayer

Dear God, I give you all the praise and glory for in You I must live if I am to be alive. Replace my sadness with Your Joy so I may live today with the hope of tomorrow. Release all, my Lord, that which oppresses me and restore to me and to others the joy of Your salvation. Remind us of the empty tomb by which He gained for us the freedom to live. Help me to live in the joy of my freedom and to share the Good News so every day is met with joy and confidence of whatever this world may bring. Thank you, God, my Father, for the joy and peace that revive me and restore me to life. May this joy and peace be also felt by whom all I pray. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen

My Spiritual Journey

The Prayer Journal’s blog is my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be an articulate writer. Use your gifts to communicate with God by perhaps with your talent as an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. God enjoys hearing from you. I know you will be blessed! I know I am!
I enjoy hearing from you too! I’m praying for you.

Blessings on your day,

Head shot 2019 - revised

Sheri

Connect with The Prayer Journals

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PrayerPrompts/
Twitter: @PrayerPrompts
Email: Hoot@thebloggingowl.com

© 2016-2019 All Rights Reserved

I Press On

With all the chaos, corruption and carelessness in the world, it is often difficult to not become discouraged. I prayed about this in my prayer journal the other day and I was drawn to the passage in Philippians, Chapter 3:14

“I press on toward the goal, to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

I press on

While pressing forward I cannot help but look backward to my own history, my own place of hurt. Leaving the old me to carry the cross of Christ. In Matthew 14:25-35, Jesus discusses the cost of being a disciple:

28 “Suppose you want to build a tower. You would first sit down and figure out what it costs. Then you would see if you have enough money to finish it. 29 Otherwise, if you lay a foundation and can’t finish the building, everyone who watches will make fun of you. 30 They’ll say, ‘This person started to build but couldn’t finish the job.’

Have I abandoned everything to carry the cross?

31 “Or suppose a king is going to war against another king. He would first sit down and think things through. Can he and his 10,000 soldiers fight against a king with 20,000 soldiers? 32 If he can’t, he’ll send ambassadors to ask for terms of peace while the other king is still far away. 33 In the same way, none of you can be my disciples unless you give up everything.”

I abandoned yesterday and dedicate today because when I draw closer to God, knowing I cannot fully live up to Christ’s call, I experience God’s personal and unconditional love for me. I grow in the knowledge of His presence and can risk relating Him to others in fearless love.

34 “Salt is good. But if salt loses its taste, how will you restore its flavor? 35 It’s not any good for the ground or for the manure pile. People throw it away.
“Let the person who has ears listen!”

How can I listen more intently?

Psalm 116:12-16

How can I repay the LORD
for all the good that he has done for me?
13 I will take the cup of salvation
and call on the name of the LORD.
14 I will keep my vows to the LORD
in the presence of all his people.
15 Precious in the sight of the LORD
is the death of his faithful ones.
16 O LORD, I am indeed your servant.

As His servant, I can listen more intently to others need for Jesus Christ. I will be the advocate for the vulnerable, the one who recognizes others in their own place of hurt. With the help of the Holy Spirit, uplift and elevate them from that place of hurt, filled with tears and fears, a place of grace, mercy and to a future filled with hope.

I press on.

God knows what we need

Matthew 14:27-30

27 “Can any of you add a single hour to your life by worrying?
28 “And why worry about clothes? Notice how the flowers grow in the field. They never work or spin yarn for clothes. 29 But I say that not even Solomon in all his majesty was dressed like one of these flowers. 30 That’s the way God clothes the grass in the field. Today it’s alive, and tomorrow it’s thrown into an incinerator. So how much more will he clothe you people who have so little faith?

I trust in the Lord

Psalm 37:3-7

3 Trust the LORD, and do good things.
Live in the land, and practice being faithful.
4 Be happy with the LORD,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Entrust your ways to the LORD.
Trust him, and he will act on your behalf.
6 He will make your righteousness shine like a light,
your just cause like the noonday sun.
7 Surrender yourself to the LORD, and wait patiently for him.

My legacy or His?

Often the question arises when we discuss our mortality is what will be our legacy? How will others remember of us after we have passed away? I would pray that others would remember Him, Jesus Christ and not me except for this:

“She pressed on toward the goal, to which God had called her heavenward in Christ Jesus, and I will do the same.”

Guiding Light

My Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father, I pray for your spirit so that I may be a good and faithful servant. Forgive me when I leave matters unattended or fail in beginning or in my attempts to carry out my goal you have laid out for me. Forgive me when I neglect my talents or misuse my gifts for Your purpose. Help me to take those risks and be diligent in those duties to my fullest capacity and to press on toward the goal. Bless me with the ambition of unselfish service and to prompt me to Serve You and those around me. Bless this unworthy steward with the joy of being made worthy through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. I press this in His name, Amen.

My Spiritual Journey

The Prayer Journal’s blog is my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be an articulate writer. Use your gifts to communicate with God by perhaps with your talent as an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. God enjoys hearing from you. I know you will be blessed! I know I am!

I enjoy hearing from you too! I’m praying for you.

Blessings on your day,

Sheri

Connect with The Prayer Journals

Facebook: Facebook/ThePrayerJournals/PrayerPrompts
Twitter: @PrayerPrompts
Email: Hoot@thebloggingowl.com

© 2016-2019 All Rights Reserved