|Series Theme: Prayer|
Title: 1. Introduction to Prayer
Each of these pages about prayer form part of a series of Prayer Seminars. To that end we hope that they will be used to stimulate prayer and not merely provide information.
1. What exactly is prayer ?
2. Praying out of a Relationship
To avoid harsh striving and self destructive effort, we need to remember that prayer, first and foremost in the Christian life, is a child of God talking to its loving heavenly Father.
Thinking about “how to talk” almost seems unnecessary, for it is something we do without thinking, when we are grown up. However, in the early years of a child's life, the child is striving to master the art of communication. So it is with the young Christian, and perhaps, in this realm at least, many of us remain young Christians!
In what is often referred to as “the Lord's Prayer” in Mt 6:9-13, Jesus instructed his followers to pray “Our Father in heaven”. In that same chapter of Matthew, God is referred to by Jesus as “YOUR Father” no less than 12 times.
For some, the term “Father” conjures up bad childhood memories, but God, our “heavenly Father”, is not like that. HE is full of love, mercy, justice, kindness and goodness. He doesn't turn against us; He isn't self-centred, He is constantly looking to bless us. Everything that comes from God is for our good.
Perhaps before we go any deeper into the subject of prayer, we need to be convinced that that is so. Perhaps a little meditation on Scripture and a determination to believe God's word rather than our fluctuating feelings would be helpful:
Jn 3:16 God sending Jesus is the ultimate proof of His love
Rom 8:31 tells us He is for us - yes He really is!
Rom 8:32 tells us that Jesus dying for us is the proof of that
Acts 20:28 says that Jesus purchased us with His blood
Rom 5:8 reminds us that Jesus died for us while we were still sinners
1 Jn 2:1 tells us that Jesus speaks for us when we fail
1 Tim 1:15 reminds us Jesus came to save sinners
3. Children of God
It sometimes helps to remember the facts of our spiritual parenthood
3.1 We are born of God Jn 1:13
3.2 We have the Holy Spirit within us Rom 8:15,16
3.3 We are to come as small children Gal 4:6
4. But what about?
4.1 But surely God knows ?
4.2 But hasn't God foreordained everything?
4.3 But I've seen so few answers to prayer?
5. Doing the Stuff
To end this first Part, why not find someone to pray with and pray simply over the things covered in this Part: