Posts Tagged ‘ prayer ’

Your Input on a Prayer Group

So I recently met a fellow believer at work and after dialoging for a little bit we concluded that it may be beneficial if we started up a prayer group with fellow believers. I’ve never done anything like this (a prayer group) before at the workplace, so this is new territory for me.

These were a few of the thoughts, that we figured would healthy and helpful to pray through and about:

  • Repentance among unbelieving co-workers
  • Daily desire of obedience for those who do believer
  • Boldness with proclaiming and sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • Praise & worship for who God is in Jesus Christ

Well after inviting a group of individuals that I knew [personally or through a reliable source] professed faith and desired obedience a question arose. Are we giving the appearance of being elite, or would we cause jealousy towards others that were not invited or do not follow Christianity. The question came because within the email I stated that if they decided to invite others that they would also be striving to follow Jesus Christ as  He is revealed in Scripture. Needless to say I didn’t really think to much of it.

My response was simply that the desire of the group is to unify believers at the work and to pray for hearts (unbelieving and believing) that live according to the glory of God. My fear in having unbelievers participate is that they would receive a sense of comfort and assurance from the time, without ever coming to repentance (main unbelievers that I brought to the forefront were Mormon’s because we work with many).

We did talk through how if they truly did desire to come, I would like to have  a conversation with them to acknowledge the difference between them and those praying, and that Christianity is exclusive regardless of what society tells us. Yes the gospel is an open call, but not all respond, and Christian do not believe everyone is saved, because Jesus doesn’t save everyone nor says that He does, did, or will (Matthew 7:17-23).

So I’m writing to get feedback and thoughts on how you feel this should be handled. Does the prayer group need to be open for all without any conversation, should it be exclusive for those who profess faith, or is there a healthy medium. Or whatever thoughts you have would be helpful.

Grace and Peace

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Pastor’s Heart For the Flock

John Piper’s final closing prayer on his last Sunday (April 25th) prior to his eight month sabbatical which started May 1st. He has committed to praying this or something similar until he returns.

O Lord, as you are often accustomed to do, show your great power in my absence. Send a remarkable awakening that results in hundreds of people coming to Christ, old animosities being removed, marriages being reconciled and renewed, wayward children coming home, long-standing slavery to sin being conquered, spiritual dullness being replaced by vibrant joy, weak faith being replaced by bold witness, disinterest in prayer being replaced by fervent intercession, boring Bible reading being replaced by passion for the Word, disinterest in global missions being replaced by energy for Christ’s name among the nations, and lukewarm worship being replaced by zeal for the greatness of God’s glory.

Lord, when Gideon had thousands of men you said, “The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me’” (Judges 7:2). You stripped his army to 300, and with that you conquered the peoples of the East who covered the ground like locusts and whose camels were like the sand of sea (Judges 7:12).

O Lord, take the mighty 300 of Bethlehem and bless this church beyond anything we have ever dreamed. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Click here to listen to the sermon.

Grace and Peace

Ray Ortlund on Prayers of the Hypocrite

“Ask, and it will be given to you” (Matthew 7:7).

Does prayer really come with a guarantee?  Here is one prayer God will surely answer.  It’s implied in the context.

In verse 3 Jesus says, “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?”  The key words are “but do not notice.”  The problem is not intentional.  We just don’t notice.  And in verse 5, Jesus calls it hypocrisy: “You hypocrite . . . .”

Hypocrisy is more than conscious self-excusing.  It is also just not seeing who we are, because we don’t want to see, we don’t even want to think about it.

Here is a prayer with no guarantee of an answer: “Father, help my brother see his hypocrisy.”  Here is a prayer with a guaranteed answer: “Father, I am a hypocrite, more than I know.  Please help me see myself.  And help me to change.”

With that prayer come humility, reality with God, growth in grace, happiness of conscience, freedom of heart, mercy toward my brother, and much more – all “good things” gladly given by our Father in heaven (Matthew 7:11).

“Ask, and it will be given to you.”

-Ray Ortlund

-Russ

Help Me to Adore Thee by Lips and Life; Praying for Balance

By Russ

Help me to adore thee by lips and life.

The above line is taken from a puritan prayer. I found it to be a wonderful thing to pray. What makes this prayer so helpful is it asks God to do two things that we all need him to do inour lives. First, to make us less like ourselves with our extremes ( it seems that we either are very good at bold speaking of truth or humble service, but rarely do we do both well.). Second, to makes us more like Him; balanced. Just look at Christ’s earthly ministry. He healed the sick, washed feet, and cast out demons.Simply put, He made it his life to meet people where they were and to serve them. However at the same time, he told the Samaritan woman to go get her husband. He told the pharisees that there blindness remained. He asked Peter, “do you love me?” Jesus dealt with hearts by applying truth to them. What a way to live.

So let us ask that we adore Christ with our mouths by not keeping this joy to ourselves and let us at the same time ask that he gives us such a deep belief in the gospel that our sins fall away and we live what we speak and what the bible teaches. This balance is not something that comes naturally to us, we must ask for it. So, lets ask.

on Christ’s Prayers For Us

“It is a consoling thought that Christ is praying for us, even when we are negligent in our prayer life; that he is presenting to the Father those spiritual needs which were not present to our minds and which we often neglect to include in our prayers; and that he prays for our protection against the dangers of which we are not even conscious, and against the enemies which threaten us, though we do not notice it. He is praying that our faith may not cease, and that we may come out victoriously in the end.”-Louis Berkhof

Free Book on How to Pray for Your Wife

Water-of-the-Word-coverA few months ago I wrote on how I pray for my wife. In that post I highlighted a book called, “Water of the Word,” by Andrew Case. What Case Has done is take sections of Scripture and personalized them in such a way as to make them prayers for his wife. Most books that do this are a little to lose and misapply the word. Case’s work doesn’t; he is not stretching texts and misapplying them, instead he is using the power of God’s promises in prayer. I found out yesterday that he is making the whole book available for free in a PDF.
Click here to get it.
For those of you who are like me and want to hold the book in your hands, you can get it from amazon.
Click here to order.
either way I would recommend to all the husbands and future husbands reading to get a copy, electronic or otherwise, and start using this work to bless your wife.

What I don’t Want from H3

H3 is one of my Church’s leadership development programs. H3 stands for head, heart, hands; these are the things we want to use for the Lord’s glory and the body’s good. The First class is today. I have been thinking a lot about what I would like to get out of this time and even more so what I do not want to have happen.

Things I don’t want:

  1. to make this about earning the approval of my elders, fear of man style.
  2. to spend the next year looking around at the other men around me and trying to keep up with the Jones (gal 6 warns me about this on.).
  3. to not give it my all and only do the bear minimum to complete what is being asked of.
  4. to make this about getting what I want ministry wise in the future and not about growing in Christ as an end in it’s self.

What I want:

  1. to make this about grow up in The Lord.
  2. to better equip myself to serve my family and the body in my areas of ministry
  3. to grow in being able to rightly divide the word
  4. to grow in self control and discipline.
  5. to grow in fellowship and common vision with the men of my church.

I would ask all of you to pray that I avoid the former and strive for the latter over the next year. Additionally, pray this for the rest of the men of the church would do the same.

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