Last week we focused on praise and shared points of praise with each other. How did it go? Did you notice any change in your mood or your attitude as you praised God for the good things even in the middle of the bad ones?
This week, I want us to focus on prayer.
I’m not sure I will ever understand how prayer ‘works’ but I do believe absolutely that God listens, that he answers and that he wants us to come before him with all of our fears, worries and desires as well as our worship.
I believe that God changes us as we pray. As we come before him in prayer so he makes us more like him and attunes our will to his will, our thinking to his thinking and so we are able to pray according to his will and really mean it.
This world needs our prayers desperately. In just the first six months of this year, we have seen wildfires devastate great swathes of Australia. We’ve been forced into our homes as a pandemic sweeps through the world infecting and killing so many and so have witnessed the closure of schools and businesses and are seeing the awful effects on the lives of people and the economy. We have been awakened once again to the fact that the world is not as it should be when it comes to valuing the lives of its people, recognising that all are not treated equally and are now seeing the damage that has done and is still doing in whole communities.
In 2 Chronicles 7:14 we read these words:
14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
Oh boy does our land need healing right now.
We ARE his people. We ARE called by his name. Are we willing to humble ourselves and pray and seek his face and turn from our wicked ways?
Jesus taught us how to pray. He showed us how to come before our heavenly father, our perfect father and pray.
Our Father in heaven.
Hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come, your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread……..
This is how we humble ourselves. We come before God and we acknowledge that he alone is holy. We tell him that we are giving up our desire to be in control and asking him to use us to fulfil his plans here on earth. We acknowledge that we rely on him and not ourselves to provide for us.
Forgive us our sins
As we forgive those who sin against us
And lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil
We turn from our wicked ways and become forgiven people who forgive people remembering that they also have access to the amazing grace of God.
As and when we do these things, God promises that he will hear from heaven, will forgive our sins and will heal our land.
Attached are some written prayers taken from the Christian Aid website to help and guide you as you pray. Feel free to use any, all or none of these…..
But this week, let us pray!