Today is the 5th day of a 28 day Instagram Challenge.
A 28 day Prayer Challenge.
So far so good.
Not perfect. Not always on my knees. Not always longer than a five minute chat between friends.
But better. Much better.
If you haven’t gotten your free printable for the #TRRYPrayer Challenge, click here to grab it.
I have been contemplating whether or not a commitment to pray each and every day has made a difference.
Because honestly, why would we pray if we didn’t think it would?
I think that’s the rub with prayer. Many people who struggle to pray, struggle for this very reason – we are afraid our prayers don’t make a difference it will so we don’t pray as much as we ought.
Or maybe it actually didn’t “work” when we tried it before, and we wrestle with some past disappointment when God chose not answer in the way we thought He should have.
So we just stop. Or at least slow down and have a spotty prayer life at best.
We toss our desires up in the air for God to catch and then expect Him to get-in-gear to deliver to us what we want, when we want it, and exactly how we want it to be.
Because, if I’m honest, I want God to answer my prayers.
All of them.
And I want Him to answer them yesterday.
I struggle to pray when He has not performed like my personal genie and magically given me what I’ve asked Him for. I struggle to pray because I’m disappointed, let down, and disheartened.
But when I choose not to pray consistently, I miss something.
I miss out on an unexpected, unintended blessing.
Prayer changes me.
When I choose to be thankful, that choice changes the way I see the world. While things in my life may not be exactly how I’d like them to be, gratitude helps me to see what’s right in my world and it takes my eyes off what I don’t have and opens them to that which I do.
Gratitude makes me more content.
When I choose to admit my failures to God and to ask for His forgiveness, I clear the way to my heart for Him to work deeper and move more fully in my life.
Repentance gives me freedom.
When I’m honest with God in a gutteral way and tell Him exactly what I am hoping He will do in my life or in the life of someone I know or love, I’m being authentic and transparent and a little bit vulnerable. The greatest fear in admitting to God and to yourself what you really want is that you will be exposed and therefore more easily hurt and disappointed if He doesn’t come through.
But the vulnerability in my requests also leaves me wide open for God to answer me.
The act of making the request give me power.
Not power to push God to take action but power to access what God has chosen to make available to me already. Prayer puts me in the drivers seat. It allows me to participate with Him in affecting change in my world.
When I yield my will and my ways to Him, I am being obedient. When I acknowledge where He wants me to change and then choose to submit my life and my choices for His glory, I get in step with His will for me which places me in the best position for Him to give me abundant life.
Yielding give me peace. Surender gives me relief.
What happens when we pray? Something changes. Maybe it’s me.
Prayer changes me.
So even if God doesn’t give me something, He always gives me one thing.
He give me a better me.
He allows me to see His heart. He allows me to hold His hand. He allows me to walk with Him more closely and know Him more fully.
And that changes my heart. It changes what I think about the tasks I put my hands to and the places my feet carry me as I walk on the path of life each and everyday.
It while it certainly can change your situation, it can also simply change you.
So today let’s pray…
Let’s pray for ourselves and for one another.
Feel free to pray about ANYTHING…
But if you need a topic to guide your focus of prayer, think about this word.
Think about these questions as you type up your prayer.
How has God changed you?
What do you want Him to change in your life?
What should change by way of your choices or actions to live more in step with His will?
Again… feel free to pray about anything that concerns you. But if the topic of “change” resonates with you, pray in that direction.
So how exactly does this work do you ask?
1) Post YOUR prayer.
First, scroll to the end of the post to find the section for comments. Keep scrolling to the end of the comments to find the empty box where you can leave your prayer request. Click “Post Comment”.
2) Pray for someone else.
Then, look above you in the comment thread for the person who posted just before of you. Hit “reply” and pray for them. That way we make sure that everyone gets covered!
Please don’t feel insecure about your ability to pray for another sister or feel that her request is above your spiritual “pay grade.” Just pray with your heart. God hears. He works with the words that we have and then He takes care of the rest.
3) Post your pic!
Make sure we can “see” you! Go to Gravatar.com so that others can see your face in the comments! (It’s easy! Just click on the green button labeled “Get your gravatar today” )
4) Pray more
Once you have left your prayer request and prayed for the person above you, if you have a few minutes feel free to reply and pray for any other comment/prayer you see in the thread.
OK friend… here we go.
Oh! And if you need a little more encouragement, scroll down and watch the video of the Brooklyn Tabernacle singing about prayer.