On the Sidelines
Part 4 – Pray It Forward
Have you ever felt like real, effective prayer is for the “professionals”? Both Matthew and Luke record the disciples asking Jesus to teach them to pray. He did just that: The Lord’s Prayer is that model prayer for us. It is not what to pray but how to pray. It is a lovely, unifying prayer when Christians of many denominations gather for a service or memorial. Even in our private prayer times, Jesus’ prayer is the template, not just the recitation, that we should use to develop our own prayer life with the Father. He wants us to pray effectively!
What you will need: A Bible or your Bible app, a notebook, pen, and highlighter. The verses highlighted below are linked so that you can easily access them during your study time.
1. What is one thing you begged your parents for that you got? Or what is something you didn’t get? Do you agree with their decision on this?
2. Read Mark 9:27-29. Have you ever looked at this verse before? Does it have any place in your theology? What about in your life? Where does the power to accomplish great things come from? Is there some issue, hang-up, betrayal, or decision you are struggling with but on which you cannot find peace or victory?
3. Pray deliberately. Read Luke 11:1 and Matthew 6:7-8. What had the disciples seen that made them ask the question of Jesus? What should we not do when we pray? Why is verse eight a bit confusing?
4. Read Luke 11:2-4. If this is the template for our prayer, what types of things should be included? List them out and discuss each specific item. Is your prayer powerful because of your words or because of who you are praying to?
5. Pray desperately. Read Luke 11:5-13. Have you ever come to the point where you felt prayer didn’t “work” anymore? What should we do when we have unanswered prayer? How is God compared to human fathers?
6. Action Step: Read Ephesians 3:20 and Matthew 19:26. What one area of your life is heavy on your heart and should be a matter of prayer? Is it a relationship that needs God’s healing touch or a decision that needs His direction? Is there a person who is far from God whom you are praying for an opening to share Jesus?
Would you commit to the P.R.A.Y. - Praise, Repent, Ask, Yield prayer daily for the next seven days? Would you commit to knocking daily for the next seven days about any issues that are about to overwhelm you?
Take a look at these great prayers of the Old Testament. Write down anything you should apply to your own prayer life.
1 Samuel 2:1-10
2 Kings 19:14-19
2 Chronicles 6:12-42
2 Chronicles 14:11-12
2 Chronicles 20:5-12
Habakkuk 3:2, 18-19