In John 10:10 Jesus promises His followers abundant life. This blog is about my life as His follower.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Receiving prayer versus Achieving

A group of women and I are studying through 1 & 2 Thessalonians together.   We're utilizing a workbook to assist us in our study.

As I was studying in the workbook and the Bible this morning I became confused. The workbook author was discussing how frequently Paul asked the Thessalonians in these books to pray for himself, Silas, & Timothy.  She then related  the concept of shifting out prayers from achieving to receiving.  At first I thought she meant it the other way around and I totally got that concept.  I thought to myself that yep I'm constantly praying that God will empower me to perform that required activities in my family, work, and community effectively.  But then as I continued I realized that I'd reversed what the author was saying. She talked about how we trust God to receive and then have His peace.

The author pointed out verses such as Matthew 7:7-8, Luke 11:10-13, Ephesians 1:3, 2 Peter 1:2-3, and 2 Corinthians 9:6-8. All of these verses point to the idea that God wants to give us what we need.  They all could be interpreted to say that we can confidently ask from God because He wants to give to us.

Sure I've read and heard these thoughts many times before.

But, today, something different stirs inside me.  Today I'm asking - what will that look like?  How will this change my prayers?

If I'm totally candid, my prayer life has been quite small lately. I've thought about God plenty. Read the Word. Sometimes sang praise songs to Him.  Occasionally confessed something.  But spent very little time actually talking to God, and even less being open and trying to listen.

So I'm thinking - OK. I want to pray more.  I'm being stirred inside about this idea of receiving versus achieving.  I don't exactly get the concept but I'm going try a bit. I just read an encouragement from a brother in Christ to memorize the Word. So I'll start with a Word about something that's heavy on my heart right now, the get some verses regarding that and meditate on those verses and work toward memorizing them. Then I'll try to see how I can pray with confidence regarding that area. 

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