Promises of Prayer
December 17, 2018
Verse for the Week:
Philippians 4:6-7; “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
’Tis the season for the hustle of the holidays. A time where staying sane seems to be more like a chore and running ragged is the norm. We are busier than ever with social commitments, stressed out about gift-giving, and knee-deep in planning for all the family festivities.
In this time of crazy, it serves us well to remember where our strength comes from. As Christians, one of the most effective ways to find strength is through prayer. It quiets our chaotic mind, feeds our hungry soul, and aligns our spirit.
Traditionally, what comes to mind when you think about prayer?
Does it feel like a chore; something to tick off your list because it’s the Christian thing to do? Perhaps it feels more like a monologue than a dialogue? Or an act of aimless pursuit unable to penetrate the space of heaven.
Regardless of your experience with prayer, let’s set our hearts on pilgrimage to find the power, the purpose, and the peace that prayer promises.
One nugget of gold that I have found in my often lonely journey of being a single mom, was the connection of prayer. Somedays it was all I had to hold on to.
When the issues of life became too heavy for family and friends, I prayed. When a wave of fear hit about my financial future, I prayed. When the weight of raising my kids alone sat heavy on my chest, I prayed. When I found myself drowning in hopelessness, I prayed.
Over the years, I have adopted a few activities that help me manage anxiety, focus my attention, and keep me from diving head-long into despair. Exercise has been one of those healthy habits.
Another survival technique has been writing and journaling. This outlet has given me space to purge all my heavy emotions in a creative way.
But even as healthy as exercise and journaling may be, nothing holds a candle to the fellowship of prayer. It has, hands down, been the source of my greatest satisfaction and deepest connection.
I have discovered that I live my best life when I have a running dialogue with God. All day long. The minute something pops in my head, I send it up—requests, worries, praise. I lay it all out, anything and everything—from significant to the trivial.
After all, He is our source of wisdom; seek His direction. He is our source of comfort; seek His presence. He is our source of inspiration; seek His truth.
On any given day, life can be extremely heavy. Most days don’t go by without a twist or turn that can easily derail us. Not to mention, the loneliness of steering the big ship of life by ourselves can be downright daunting. And if you are anything like me, you’ve learned how to pull yourself up by the bootstraps and paint on a happy face as you put out the fires along the way.
But is that the abundant life God has called us to experience? Is that the peace that transcends all understanding? Is that what guards our hearts and minds in the midst of trials and tribulations? No. It’s not.
This is why God instructs us to pray—to connect with Him. All too often we approach prayer as something to check off our to-do list and can seem like a monologue in our very busy day. But the power of prayer is in the dialogue. It’s when we listen and soak in His presence that we truly connect with His power to convict (John 16:8), teach (1 John 2:27), guide (John 16:3), and lead (Matt 4:1) us in the way we should go.
Lord, I want to connect with you. Help me this week to find pockets of time in my day to talk to you in prayer. As I release my anxious thoughts to you, let your peace wash over my heart and mind as I trust you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Reflect and Respond:
This week, amidst our busy schedules, let’s commit to find pockets of prayer.
- Before getting out of bed in the morning
- While drinking a cup of coffee
- In the shower
- Turn the radio off on the way to work
- While cleaning the dishes or doing laundry
- Before you close your tired eyes for sleep
These pockets could be a minute in length or five. The goal is to create a habit of talking to God. Pour out your heart when it aches. Send up praise and thanksgiving for a great moment with one of your kids. Seek direction on a decision. Pray a scripture that really means something to you.
Prayer is powerful—even in small pockets of time!
Hugs for a great week and remember, you are not alone. Be blessed as you connect through prayer this week.