Jan 6, 2023

My sister starts each New Year with a “new word”. Instead of a resolution which I do not do. Resolutions are easily broken and then you just feel badly. I decided this year, my “word” would be “Intentional”. I want to be intentional about seeking God, about my prayer life, about my Bible, about loving those around me, and some who are not “around me”. I am not sure what that all looks like yet, but it involves time. 

Prayer is such a tough subject. We all pray when we need something, and that’s good.  God wants us to bring our requests to him. But do we bring our praises as often as we should?  I catch myself praying in earnest about something that I feel strongly about, then when it happens, I forget to thank him. WOW! I thank the waiter in the restaurant when they bring my water. We pray before meals, it’s a great habit. My grandparents used to read a couple of verses from the bible before the meal prayer.  

The bible speaks of prayer and petition.

Eph 6:18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

Dan 9:3 So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes.

We learn quickly how to plead with God for our needs. God gave us his best example of a prayer in Matt 6:9. We recite it often in church, but how often do we turn to it? I have found myself praying it, when I do not know WHAT to pray, because it truly covers it all. 

Our Father, which art in heaven (establishing WHO he is), hallowed be thine name (praising him, showing that praise should come first before our petitions). Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. (since we know that God’s will for us is the very best, we can know that if we pray his will, we cannot ask for better. We know that His kingdom is in heaven right now, and the dark prince of this world rules here UNLESS & up to the point that God intervenes so asking his will on earth like it is in heaven is powerful. It is warfare!). Give us this day our daily bread. (it is such a small sentence… but it is asking God to supply all our needs on a day to day basis. He tells us in Matt 6:34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.  (So we can ask for one day at a time.). Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. (We know we sin, we should ask daily for forgiveness, but also for help to forgive those who have wronged us, hurt us.).  Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (As we have just asked for forgiveness, I think this line refers to how we need to ask him for help preserving ourselves from sinning again. {impossible, but we reach for it}.) For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever Amen. (as we come back and close with praise again for HE is worthy!)

I hope this New Year finds you healthy and in love with your savior, seeking to spend time with Him, and when you are in need of prayer and do not know where to start, start here, with the prayer HE gave us. It covers it all but think about each word as you say it. For HE is worthy! AMEN!!

Shirlene Peterson