Monday: Time for Prayer
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Think through what prayer really is: fallen sinful beings, worthy of death, are able, instantly, to have direct communication with the Creator of the universe-our Holy God.

Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Also, when God in Christ clothed Himself in human flesh, accepting humanity’s limitations, He, too, sensed the necessity of prayer. Though not standing before the Father in the same position that we as fallen sinners are, Jesus as a human still saw the necessity for prayer.

Read Matthew 14:22-23; Matt 26:36; Mark 1:35-37; Luke 5:15-16; Luke 6:12-13. What characterized Jesus’ personal prayer life? Describe the circumstances that surrounded Jesus’ praying. What lessons can we glean from the particulars of Christ’s prayer life such as frequency, location, and timing?

Christ certainly modeled the prayer life that He enjoined on His disciples. Mornings, evenings, after preaching, before preaching, whenever possible-Jesus prayed. Gardens, mountains, solitary places, wherever distractions subsided-Jesus prayed. Separated from the Father’s presence spatially, Jesus united with the Father through prayer spiritually. Christ’s spiritual lifeblood came coursing through the spiritual artery of prayer. Should Christ’s modern followers-weakened by sinful tendencies, choked by worldly cares, frustrated by failures-settle for something less than Jesus’ prayer life?

Prayer is the opening of the heart to God as to a friend. Not that it is necessary in order to make known to God what we are, but in order to enable us to receive Him. Prayer does not bring God down to us, but brings us up to Him.-Ellen G. White, Steps to Christ, p. 93.

Read Mark 11:22-26, Luke 11:13, John 14:12-14. How are we to understand the promises written here about prayer? How have you experienced what Jesus said here? At the same time, how have you learned to cope when things you have prayed for haven’t come as you have hoped?

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Monday: Time for Prayer — 20 Comments

  1. It's a difficult thing when you pray for your needs to be met and they are not right away, you still have to believe that God knows what's best for you and keep on hoping and trusting in Him.

    Like(17)
    • [Moderator's Note: Please use full names when commenting. Thank you.]

      When God does not answer my prayer, I learned after a long time that God has a better things to offer we just have to wait without disappointment!
      devadas.

      Like(4)
  2. Prayer is one of my very favorite things. I do not know of anything more vital to my every day, either. Yes, I have learned to pray and have had the experiences promised by Jesus when I pray.

    I prayed with my mother even as a very young child, but when she read to me in Bible story books and the caption under the picture of the little boy outside under a tree looking up at the clouds about talking to God alone, I had to try it out for myself. I would go out on a little hill behind our trailer and look up at the clouds. It was there that I first really gave my heart to God--I was five. Those talks we had were definitely real and I have loved talking with Him ever since!

    He does not always answer in the way I hope. Still, He always answers if I listen. Likewise, I know I can talk to Him and tell Him what is on my mind, even if I know He does not agree with what I am saying. I can talk it out honestly with Him. He understands, and I can surrender to Him because I know I can trust Him with myself and all that troubles me! We have good times, too!! Making life worth living!

    Like(37)
    • "And a child shall lead them." At age three "Time for Prayer" was vital for Kirk. In the Parish of Manchester, Jamaica, W.I. Water supply is not dependable, if you do not have a storage tank. During this particular time, the water from the main stream was locked off. Kirk had a big concern, no water for necessities. He said, "Mommy, we have to pray to Jesus for water."

      Three precious little ones knelt around that table holding hands talking to Jesus. Kirk praying said, "Dear Jesus, bless mommy and daddy, my brothers and make me a good boy. Jesus, please give us some water so we could bathe and have the toilet flushed and have our warm drink before we go to bed. Thank you Jesus. Amen."

      Before the Amen was said, the most pleasant sound was heard, air running through those pipes, a low pipe on the outside of the house had enough water, which gave us more than enough water for the items little Kirk asked for. Then it was gone!! God, asked us to have faith, whatsoever we desire we are to believe. Oh, how much to receive through our obedience to God's Word. He is worthy to be praised.

      Like(22)
      • What a miracle to witness! Praise the Lord for Kirk's faith! Yes, let us teach our children to love and trust God and thank Him for answering our prayers.

        Like(5)
  3. I'm a young lady who is in dying need of prayers from those around me
    I've suddenly gone astray n now I know I need to get bck into Gods fold. From time to time I wld try to pray n things wldnt go right,for some strange reason I'm distracted n when I'm distracted its difficult for me to continue I wake some mornings early to do my personal devotion and I'm js distracted by someone. I js need a personal relationship with God and I'm finding it difficult to get there,so I'm asking for prayers.

    Like(13)
    • Camille, Jesus' example was to remove himself from the distractions, and I find that I must do the same thing. We have within our ability to not let our circumstances control us, and must exercise that, often with difficulty. Our relation to God must come before all others, or we will remain helpless. If our situation makes this difficult, then pray that God will guide to a better situation, whatever that means.

      Do you remember the story of the one sick of the palsy in Mark 2:1-12? What was done so he could be in the presence of Jesus, even though many obstacles were in between? They did what they were able to do, and so must we. Often our obstacles are of our own devising. For example, I realized that my going to bed late was an obstacle for my early morning devotions, and I fixed that by correcting the problem. That was something I was in control of, and at times it means telling others I cannot do as they wish. I cannot control them, but I am responsible to control me. God will guide every step needed if we ask, then follow.

      Praying with you for God's leading.

      Like(16)
    • Camille,
      Jesus has both arms reaching out for you. He heard your cry and sent a second Angel to strengthen you. I will pray for you, along with many others that will never post here, you are not alone.
      May you see the love of Christ lighting your way.

      Like(14)
    • Dear Camille,
      I have just talked to God on your behalf! Just like you asked. I know He heard, I know He hears your heart cry, and will bring the deliverance you seek. Trust Him, and hold on. He wants the same thing or you my friend!

      Like(6)
    • Camille, I'm praying for you right now.

      If you are easily distracted, you can ask God to keep you focused on Him and His Word as you spend time with Him.

      As Robert suggested, if you can find a place that is a bit more private, without so many distractions, that will probably help too. But you can have time with Jesus in the middle of a crowd, if you so choose.

      Like(4)
  4. Heavenly Father, I come before your presence this morning on the behalf of Sister Camille Jones, who is reaching out to you trying to have this rightful connection and somehow the Devil is blocking her efforts. I pray that she will first acknowledge that You are God alone she must put You first in everything that in her life. Please help her to realize this that she must spent time in Your words in order to have this relationship with you in fasting and prayers and services to others just like Jesus did. Come into her situation Jesus and let Holy Spirit teach Camille your will in the wonderful name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, Amen.

    Like(12)
  5. I have a problem, I find myself sinning again and again... I feel like i am not worthy of the grace of God, how can i be able to change my life, i have a bad addiction and cant find myself to stop it, can u pray for me because i dont know what to do..

    Like(5)
    • Offering advice from the anonymity of the Internet is probably not all that useful, but for what it is worth; find a good friend who you respect, confess your addiction and with their help make the appropriate changes in the pattern of your life to replace the addiction with something that is worthwhile. Prayer is helpful but shared prayer with a friend who you trust and respect gives God the opportunity to work through people.

      Like(4)
    • [Moderator's Note: Please use full names when commenting. Thank you.]

      Our father in heaven I come to you with un-shaken faith and adoration I pray that you would touch Dumisani Bhebhe and get him out of all the addictions he is facing, you delivered me from my smoking problem even before I prayed to you, with that faith and thanks giving I present this brother Dumisani Bhebhe in to your mighty hands and pray that you supply him with the guidance of the holy spirit, that he might glorify your name, in Jesus precious name !

      Like(8)
    • Dumisani Bhebhe, God promised to us the victory over our circumstances and He promised not to allow us to be tempted beyond our ability to bear and with the circumstance will ales provide a way of escape.
      You must first sincerely want to forsake the addiction in your heart, for God sees the motives of our hearts. Once we shown our wanting to overcome the addiction in our hearts, God will grant the victory. I am a living proof of this promise of God. God will also wraught in you the hatred towards the addiction that will permanently remain with you for the rest of your life. Be sincere with your petition before The Lord and rejoice in the victory He will give you according to His good pleasure. Cheers my friend!!!

      Like(7)
      • I would wish to add that often we don't want to overcome what a sinful heart by nature has become attracted to, but are convicted that God must then condemn us. At this point we must rely on His promises to work in us "both to will and do of His good pleasure", focusing on His promises, and not our desires. Faith will lead us to submit to His will, even if we must sweat great drops of blood to do so. This is true faith; trusting God while not yet fully hating sin. Jesus faced this same struggle, to fend for himself rather than accept God's will and be separated from God's favor to save sinners, most of whom would not accept His sacrifice for them. It's the same temptation really; self or God. (no, Jesus was not attracted to sin, but naturally desired to preserve His life with His Father) He prayed 3 times for an escape, but each time accepted God's revealed will and then acted upon it.

        The struggle will be real, and is described even as "resisting unto blood, striving against sin"(Heb 12:4). This is speaking of surrendering our greatest desires to God's will for us as we have come to understand it, believing that the complete victory will be ours and we will become free of the temptation's power at last, if we only press forward in fighting "the good fight of faith", laying hold upon eternal life which God has promised to the overcomer. It's a real battle, and Satan will press every allurement possible to keep us his prisoners. But Jesus has promised that the truth will set us free! What is this truth? That He will create in us a clean heart, and renew a right Spirit within us.

        Like(3)
    • Dumisani, you are right. You are not worthy of the grace of God. Neither am I. That's the definition of grace - something given to the unworthy.

      You are in a much better place to receive the grace of God when you know you are unworthy than when you think you are worthy. (That's why Jesus could save prostitutes, but He couldn't save the proud Pharisees.)

      As for changing your addiction, I have some practical suggestions in addition to Maurice's:
      1) Focus on your relationship with Christ, rather than stopping your addiction. As you spend time with Christ, your addiction will be crowded out.
      2) Note what triggers your addictive behavior. Then change the behavior that is the trigger. Then you are much less likely to be tempted by the addictive behavior.
      3) Think of a behavior you can do instead of the addiction whenever you are tempted. For sure, pray for deliverance, but you can't substituted nothing for something; you can't substitute nothing for an addiction. So you need to find something to do INSTEAD OF the addiction.

      I pray that Christ may give you the grace and strength to overcome your addiction.

      Like(3)
  6. I don't quite agree with the lesson comment: "Though not standing before the Father in the same position that we as fallen sinners are, Jesus as a human still saw the necessity for prayer."

    How would Jesus genuinely feel the necessity if not in the same position that fallen man is in? Keep in mind, our creator subjected Himself to these conditions so that as "he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted." (Heb 2:18) He took our position to demonstrate how to gain the victory over the world, yet without sinning in the process. What does this teach us about the possibilities through the faith of Jesus? What other reason would there be for His living example?

    His greatest temptation came while feeling the burden of guilt that all our sins brought upon Him as He took them upon himself.

    Jesus' position was not dependent on being sinless or sinful, but was about being tempted by a more powerful being, constantly assailed by enemies and limited by the weaknesses of the flesh. This leaves even the sinless one in need of Divine help to overcome the world (having laid aside His own Divinity) while having the same needs of sinful beings. Without God's intervention, Jesus would have been killed long before the cross. I would venture to say Jesus faced far greater temptations than we have ever met.

    While our guilt gives us a specific need, the need to gain the victory over temptation was shared by Jesus as a man with us. It is this need that drove Him to much prayer. He stood in the same position as we do today, but without having sinned. Knowing this should give us great hope and faith in the "exceeding great and precious" promises of God.

    While Jesus didn't need a Savior, He depended fully on the power of God to become ours. Perhaps His need was even greater, living as a man in our flesh?

    Like(7)

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