by Jen Balkey
As we say YES to Jesus in Women’s Ministry, our mission is to connect women to God’s Word and each other and to enable women to serve others. This requires women to grow in their relationship with God. How can we foster this growth? Prayer is one of many spiritual disciplines that helps a person grow in their faith. So, let’s take a closer look at prayer.
There are many types of prayer, reasons why we pray, and purposes that prayer achieves. Likewise, many can also give a list of reasons why they do not pray. I do not have the time. I do not know how. What difference does it make, I need to get busy just getting things done. Are any of these thoughts running through your head? In response to some of these questions it may be good to ask: What am I spending my time on instead? Does it have eternal significance? What measures have I taken to address not knowing how? Am I questioning God’s power, His ability, or am I possibly fearful that God’s response may not be what I really wanted?
Many of these questions are not simple to answer. Our human nature leads us to do things that move us away from practicing prayerful obedience. Some reasons why our prayer life is not fruitful are prioritizing our time poorly, wanting control, lacking patience, and being fearful that God’s will may differ from our own. Is it helpful to hear that there is no ‘right’ way to pray? Fortunately, God has supplied many examples of the power of prayer in Scripture. Prayer is not just sitting idly by waiting for God to make something happen. Prayer is EXPECTANTLY coming to God- reverently and in complete worship of Him. To approach Him in prayer admits we aren’t in control and we trust His plan. If we avoid prayer we are doing both a disservice to ourselves and to God.
Let’s dig a little deeper together! Are you okay praying privately, but are not comfortable with corporate prayer? In corporate prayer there are NO requirements on how to pray. You do not have to pray aloud or know the ‘just right’ words. God is pleased with those who pray silently in agreement with the spoken prayers. Corporate prayer is also a great way to strengthen your skills in praying. Mary learned to pray from Hannah (Luke 1:46-55; 1 Sam. 2:1-10). Saul (later Paul) learned things about prayer from Stephen (Acts 7:57-8:1). The disciples were taught to pray by following Jesus’ example (Matt. 6:9-13) and by His leading them to the place of prayer (Luke 9:28; 11:1; 22:39-46).
God knows what we need before we even ask. (Matthew 6:8) But do we ask? Once we come in humility and with open eyes and ears to God’s plan we may then come to know what it is that we really need. True prayer allows us to abandon our own agenda and submit to God’s will. It’s not even about being brave enough… it is more so a matter of obedience. Prayer is an act of worship. Who is on the throne of your heart? Are you seeking your own interests and protection or do you want something bigger?? Let’s live BIG! How? Live for HIM! Pray with HIM on the throne. Pray for His will in our lives- yes, HIS will! Have no fear. God is always in control. We need not be naive in thinking that the outcome will be easy or painless, but it is all for His glory and honor.
We can lift His name higher, louder, and stronger together! Women’s Ministry team WANTS to see God moving in our midst. Let us pray together in humility, confidence, in truth (with sincere hearts), and with thanks! Will you join us in discovering a deeper prayer life? We will grow together spiritually as a body, between one another, and personally with God. Do you really know what is on the hearts of other women here in our body at Hebron?
The Building Up Team is scheduling a prayer gathering for women to come together once a month to PRAY. Times will vary by day and time each month so that more women have an opportunity to participate. The next prayer gathering is scheduled for: Saturday, Oct 14th at 11am in Fellowship Hall.
Consider these lyrics from the song, Thrive, by Casting Crowns: “We know we were made for so much more than ordinary lives. It's time for us to more than just survive. We were made to thrive.” Prayer is a powerful tool that we can use to help us more than just survive. We can begin to THRIVE!