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30 Days of Prayer

30 Days of Prayer: Week 3 - Bold Prayer

"Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." - Hebrews 4:16

How would you describe your prayers? 

Are they weak, timid, and small prayers? Or are the strong, specific and bold prayers?

When we look at some of the ordinary people in the Bible, we see that while they struggled to follow Jesus as much as the rest of us, there were some who possessed a bold faith which led to bold prayer. This is most clearly seen in the life of the early church in the book of Acts. 

At this point, stop reading this post, pick up your Bible, and read Acts 4:1-31.

Ok, now that we're all on the same page after reading that passage, it is clear that these ordinary believers had a rock solid conviction that God was who He said He was and they were banking on it! 

A few things worth pointing out from that passage:
1. Peter and John were preaching the gospel boldly and thousands of people were getting saved. Ready for the kicker? They were ordinary, "uneducated and common men" (v.13)! This is good news for me and you because that means there is no reason God couldn't use us to see the same thing in our city. 

2. Peter and John went to jail for preaching the gospel and their "excuse" for getting into so much trouble is fantastic (v.20).

3. Once they're released from prison, they go back to the other disciples and have a prayer meeting where they praise God for their misfortunes and then they pray and ask God for MORE BOLDNESS (v.29-31)!

So, clearly these disciples possessed a bold faith that was evidenced in their daily lives and in their prayer life. The personal applications from a passage like this could easily fill a few pages but in terms of our prayer life: 

We should be the most confident people on earth.

Why?

1. Because our boldness rests completely on the character of God, not us. His promises are firm, steadfast, and forever. (Isaiah 40:8, 1 Peter 1:25)

2. God has sovereignly and strategically placed us on this earth for an eternal purpose and equipped us with His Spirit, His Word, and His people. (Mark 16:15, Acts 1:8, Ephesians 6:10-19)

3. God wins! If you've read the book of Revelation, you know that while we await the coming of our King, the story will have an end and we will be on the right side of history; we'll be on God's side. (Revelation 21)

All of these truths should lead us to pray bold prayers because we know the promises of God and we're learning to stand on them and pray for His Spirit to move powerfully in our lives.

 

PRAYER CHALLENGE THIS WEEK: PRAY BOLD PRAYERS! 

1. PERSONAL PRAYER
If you could see God anything in your life, according to His will, what would it be? 

- Make a list of these things; be specific! Search Scripture for God's promises and claim them as they are applicable to your situation. Pray boldly every day this week, standing on God's promises, and watch what God may do. 

2. PRAYER FOR OUR CITY & STATE
Only 2% of Utah is considered evangelical Christians. Translation: we live in an unreached people group! How often do you pray for the millions of lost souls in our state? How often do you notice that they live next door, or sit next to you at work, or at school? 

- Who has God sovereignly placed within your sphere of life that doesn't know or follow Jesus? Make a list and begin praying for their salvation!

- Pray that God would give you opportunities to be the answer to your own prayers, in sharing the gospel with your unbelieving friends and leading them to Christ!

3. PRAY FOR THE NATION
The Bible instructs us to pray for those in authority over us regardless of how small or how big that authority is. From the crossing guard to the President of the United States, Christians are called to pray for and submit to those in authority over them. (2 Chronicles 7:13-16, 1 Timothy 1:1-4)

- Take a minute every day this week and pray bold prayers regarding the state of our nation and it's leaders at every level. Pray for their salvation. Pray for them to govern our city, state, and nation with wisdom that comes from God. 

4. SHARE
Share on The City, in the House of Prayer group, what God has been teaching you this week. What are you learning about praying bold prayers? What effect is it having on your outlook on life?

30 Days of Prayer: Week 1 - Too Busy Not to Pray

"When God finds a person who will place as his priority a life of intimate, personal, dynamic fellowship with Him, He directs His power, guidance, and wisdom into and through that person. God has found a person through whom He can change the world." - LeRoy Eims

If we're being honest, we all struggle to pray on a regular basis in a way that feels effective. Sadly, one of our most common excuses for not praying as often and as effectively as we should is busyness.

Tragically, we even justify our busyness to look more spiritual or more important than others. For the Christian, this shouldn't be the case. 

Many times throughout the gospels we see Jesus leaving the crowds, and at times even his closest disciples, in order to be alone with the Father in prayer (Mark 1:35). This truth brings to light a very serious reality for us today:

If Jesus, who was the God-man, needed to step away from ministry in order to spend one on one time with the Father, how much more should we be getting alone to pray to our Father?

Regardless of how much you pray now, the reality is that it's never too late to begin doing the right thing. 

 

PRAYER CHALLENGE THIS WEEK: MAKE TIME TO PRAY!
As with any new habit, you need a good game plan to implement it. It is our hope and prayer that the following suggestions would be helpful to you as you seek to make more time to pray this week and in doing so you would experience an intimacy with the Father like never before.

1. Read Matthew 6:5-14 on "The Lord's Prayer". 
Ask God what He is speaking to you about.
- What are you going to do with this truth?
- How will you apply the truth of God's Word this week?

2. Establish a daily prayer routine.
Set your alarm to go off earlier in the morning OR so that you're reminded to pray before bed. The time of day doesn't matter but the intentionality does. - What time will you pray each day this week?
- When is your time with God scheduled?
- Do you have a specific place where you pray?

One of the greatest lies of Satan is that we don't have enough time to sleep, eat, and pray. However, all of us have enough time to sleep, eat, and breathe. As soon as we realize that prayer is as important as sleeping, eating, and breathing, we will be amazed at how much time we have to pray." - Pastor from South Korea

3. Pray while driving.
Many of us commute to work. This is potentially 10-45 minutes of alone time with God! Rather than wasting that time with talk radio, turn off the radio and just begin talking to God.

Not sure what to say? Here are some topics to kick start the conversation:
- What do you need to praise God for?
- What do you need to thank God for?
- What do you need to confess to God?
- What area of your life needs to be brought into submission?

4. Do it!
You now have tangible tools to help you make time to pray this week. How willing are you to actually implement some of these suggestions? 

5. Share.
We'd love to hear what God is teaching you personally as you walk through this 30 Days of Prayer initiative. Please feel free to share your insights, comments, or questions on The City in our group called "House of Prayer". 


Praying with you this week,
Pastor Brett Ricley

 

 

"If I fail to spend two hours in prayer each morning, the devil gets the victory through the day" - Martin Luther

"Prayer was the first of Jesus' daily activities and appointments, the number one item on his calendar each day. If nothing else would get done that day, prayer would get done." - Dave Earley

30 Days of Prayer: Will You Join Us?

"There can be no communion with a holy God, no fellowship between heaven and earth, no power for the salvation of souls, unless time is set apart for it." - Andrew Murray

Beginning January 1st, Redeeming Life Church will be joining many other churches around the Utah valley in a collective and unified initiative of prayer. While we will each be practicing prayer in a variety of ways throughout the next 30 days, the goal for all of us remains the same: to increase our capacity for daily prayer that cultivates intimacy with the Father and has a profound impact on our city, our state, the nation, and the world; all for the glory of God!

We will begin this initiative on January 1st. We will also be providing a weekly prompt on a specific aspect of prayer. This will be posted here on our website as well as on our Facebook page. Along with each topic will be specific and tangible ways to begin implementing prayer into your daily routines effectively. The 4 topics will be:
   1. Too Busy Not to Pray (Jan. 1)
   2. Turn Your Problems into Prayer (Jan. 8)
   3. Bold Prayer (Jan. 15)
   4. Best Practices (Jan. 22)

Will you join us? 

If you said yes, and I hope you did, here are some suggestions to make the most out of the next 30 days:

1. Commit to Praying Every Day. 
Like any commitment, if you commit to it for a period of 30 days it typically turns into a habit. What better habit to pick up in 2017 than an effective lifestyle of daily prayer?!

2. Utilize the "Prayer Essentials" bookmark.
These are free and available at the building. Please take one for you and a few to give to others!

3. Practice praying daily with others.
This could be your spouse, family, and/or kids. If you're single, get together with others (same gender) and pray together and for each other.

4. Interact with others on The City.
We'd love to hear what God is teaching you throughout this process. We also believe God speaks to us through the convictions and personal journey of others as well. Please feel free to share your insights, convictions, comments, favorite prayers or Scriptures, or questions on The City in our prayer group: House of Prayer.

5. Attend a Prayer & Worship Gathering!
Our couple churches who are participating in this will be hosting various prayer and worship events at three different locations in the month of January. I’d like to encourage you to go to at least two, especially the one that Redeeming Life is hosting!