Praying in 2023 – Words of Grace – January 6, 2023

Praying in 2023 – Words of Grace – January 6, 2023

The life of a Christian is best lived praying. The work of a congregation is best done praying. To pray is a command, a necessity, and an encouragement to our faith.

Praying is a way of life. As such, it calls for our whole self and all aspects of our life to be placed before God in a relationship, engaged in an activity, that is all consuming. After all, we are praying to the one true and living God.

Praying is the work of the church. The mission of Christ to make disciples through his church requires the wisdom, power, and blessing of God. Apart from Christ, we can do nothing. Prayer is how we receive all we need to do as he commanded.

Each January we call our congregation to a season of prayer that is meant to encourage our praying throughout the year. This Sunday at Grace Community Church we will begin our 21-day prayer season called, Devoted to Prayer.

But don’t wait until Sunday to start praying. Spend your weekend praying with these four words in mind: trust, entrust, ask, and receive.

In prayer, trust God. Trust that God is your Father who loves you steadfastly and without end. Trust that he is wise in his ways as he works for good in your life. Trust that he is powerful to fulfill his promises and his will in all things. Trust is the foundation of prayer.

In prayer, entrust to God. From a heart of trust, entrust all things to God. Entrusting is active trust. Entrusting is the mental work of actively giving over all things to God’s love, wisdom, power, and care. Entrust yourself, your circumstances, and others to God.

In prayer, ask of God. Trusting and entrusting to God leads to asking him to work and provide in everything. Ask in Jesus’ name by acknowledging that he made the way for you to come to God by his death on the cross. Ask according to God’s will by praying from the Bible. Ask for God’s glory in all things as a partner in his kingdom work.

In prayer, receive from God. Receive God’s response to your prayers by trusting that it is his best for you, submitting to his will for you, and giving thanks to him in all things.

These four words (trust, entrust, ask, receive) are not a formula for getting what we want from God. They are qualities of the heart and of the nature of prayer that will help us persevere. They are repeated experiences in prayer on the path that we, the pilgrims, walk each day until we meet the Lord.

I am praying for you this weekend. I look forward to seeing you Sunday.