Prayer – Step 4

The revelation of sin in our lives, acts of omission as well as commission, should bring about deep sorrow and repentance for those who love Jesus Christ and desire to follow Him.  Once we have the realization and knowledge of a sin pattern or area in our life, we take the steps of confession (to God and to other believers) and move to change by the power of God that is at work within us.  We must remain humble and teachable for God to do this work in our hearts.  Prayer is a large part of this process.

My daughter said flippantly this last week, “I’m starving.  I shouldn’t say that.  I’m really just hungry.  There are people who are actually starving.”  Although I have been aware of this in the past, her statement reminded me that often I find myself eating/snacking more out of boredom and stress than out of hunger.  I’ll even eat food that I know is really unhealthy for me simply because I don’t want to waste it or throw it away.  I’m working on giving myself permission to value my body more than I value the food.  I also need a good substitute for my emotional eating.  Yesterday my pastor handed that to me all wrapped up in a beautiful package called his sermonPrayer.  Prayer should be my “go to” rather than a substitute.  It should be my first response when temptations come before me.  I should run directly to my Creator and Savior for His guidance, strength and protection.

We’ve been studying for several weeks the Armor of God out of chapter 6 in Ephesians.

In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak. (Ephesians 6:16-20 ESV)

We’ve been learning how to clothe ourselves rightly for battle.  I’ve heard before that the one offensive weapon that this list gives us is the Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, but now I disagree.  Prayer is also an offensive weapon.

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 ESV)

Prayer is powerful when we are right before God.  We must pray at all times about all things.  Our days should be filled with conversations with God.  Seeking to know Him.  Seeking His power and influence in our lives and interceding for others in our prayers, lifting them up to Him.  He is our helper.  I need His strength and the work of His Holy Spirit in my heart and mind to renew my mind and my body.  I need the prayers of my church family to support my efforts.  I am weak, but He is strong.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-22 ESV)

Father God, help me to rejoice and be thankful.  Help me to hold fast what is good.  Thank You Jesus for equipping us to stand against the evil one.  Thank You for making a way for me to come directly to the throne of God with my prayers.  What a privilege it is to walk with You Lord.  Renew my mind and strengthen my body.  Help me to bring glory to Your great name in all that I do.  Amen.

Ask God to show you what He wants to change in your life and in your heart.  Stay humble and teachable.  Confess your sins to your church family.  Allow others to pray for you.

Go to God first when temptations come your way.  Pray.  Seek Him.  Be encouraged.  Press on.

Eyes on God

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