POWER PRAYERS, 26.04.19
POWER PRAYERS, 26.04.19
Are you tired of praying weak, wimpy whiney prayers? Would you like to get to something beyond the “Help me, help me . . . . Please, God, please God . . . .” and “Bless me . . . . Bless me . . . .” kind of prayers?
It’s time to step up to the plate, and put some power in our prayers. If you want to pray prayers that have power, you must, first and foremost, pray in alignment with God’s Will. Secondly, pray specifically. The third aspect which lends power to prayer, is the use of active verbs.
Intrinsic to having power in prayer, is knowing who we are in Christ/Messiah. We are sons and daughters of the Living God. ”For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall again into fear; rather, you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” . . . . we are children of God. And if children, also heirs—heirs of God and joint-heirs with Messiah” (Rom.8:15-17); “And if you belong to Messiah, then you are Abraham’s seed—heirs according to the promise..” (Gal.3:29).
Inheriting all that the Father has for us, as joint heirs with our Messiah, we are like family. What is offered to us in God’s Word, conditional to our following all that He has outlined and called us to, provides access to His promises. Just as in any well-structured nuclear family, there are, of course, house rules – expectations, responsibilities, as well as privileges, which includes discipline, and consequences for not following through. It is the same in the family of God. As such, we do not need to beg, plead, or bargain (that does not mean we get to make demands); but we do need to follow the house rules. In response to our Father’s generosity, the least we can do is reciprocate by volunteering our cooperation, with an attitude of gratefulness, responding with determined, active commitment, and a humbled heart filled with passion and longing.
Psalm 119 lends itself well as a model of power prayer. The language used demonstrates assertive, active verbs, rather than passive, timid, uncertainty, pleading and gravelling. Not only do the Psalmist’s requests and supplications use active verbs, but his statements of submission and surrender are equally demonstrative. His prayers are also specific which gives them more power because it gives clarity to his requests as well as to his intentions. Being specific, rather than generic and vague presents oneself with a level of intentionality – impactful, whether in a request or a pledge of action. Let us have a closer look at some examples.
Deal bountifully with Your servant,
That I may live and keep Your word.
Open my eyes, that I may see
Wondrous things from Your law.
Remove from me reproach and contempt,
For I have kept Your testimonies.
Teach me Your statutes.
Make me understand the way of Your precepts;
So shall I meditate on Your wonderful works.
Strengthen me according to Your word.
Remove from me the way of lying,
And grant me Your law graciously.
I have chosen the way of truth;
Your judgments I have laid before me.
Teach me, O Lord, the way of Your statutes,
And I shall keep it to the end.
Give me understanding, and I shall keep Your law;
Indeed, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
Make me walk in the path of Your commandments,
For I delight in it.
Incline my heart to Your testimonies,
Notice the consistent use of words, such as: Do, Open, Take, Make, Teach, Turn, Give. Nothing passive or wimpy about these supplications. They are concise, assertive, active, each statement in its own way making a very active and concise request, without apology or hesitation. But notice, too, what they are/are not about. They are not about material, physical, or carnal things. They are all about spiritual/Godly behaviours, related to following HIM, conforming to HIS WAYS. On no occasion does the Psalmist ask God to accept the Psalmist’s views, choices, or decisions (and then ask God to bless them, as we hear so much of today).
Now let’s look at some examples of equivalent power, on the side of the Psalmist’s reciprocation/participation in the process (again, from Psalm 119):
With my whole heart I have sought You;
Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
Your word I have hidden in my heart,
That I might not sin against You.
Blessed are You, O Lord!
Teach me Your statutes.
With my lips I have declared
All the judgments of Your mouth.
I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies,
As much as in all riches.
I will meditate on Your precepts,
And contemplate Your ways.
I will delight myself in Your statutes;
I will not forget Your word.
So shall I keep Your law continually,
Forever and ever.
And I will walk at liberty,
For I seek Your precepts.
I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings,
And will not be ashamed.
And I will delight myself in Your commandments,
Which I love.
My hands also I will lift up to Your commandments,
Which I love,
And I will meditate on Your statutes.
Active, overt pledges; overt statements of commitment, never hesitant, but expressively vowing to follow God’s ways – the statements are assertive, while the attitude/intention is one of submission. Each statement is a declaration of the Psalmist’s intent to submit to God’s ways, to serve Him, to surrender. Each statement is God-focussed, rather than self-focussed, and self-serving. How opposite of what so many of our prayers are . . . . a great lesson to absorb.
Now join me at PRAYER CORNER and let us pray in accordance with these examples.
© 2018, revised 2019 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.
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