Youths from different cultures and continent coming together to bring Light to the Darkness (Matthew 5:14)
Join us this Thanksgiving! Our team has planned a day of giving back to the community from 9AM - 5 PM (Phoenix, AZ). DMs us for more information!
How to pray more powerfully!
Prayer remains one of the great and glorious mysteries of the universe — that the all-knowing, all-wise, all-sovereign God should ordain to run his world in response to our prayers is mind-boggling. But that is the uniform witness of Scripture. God hears and answers the prayers of his people. Oh, do not neglect this amazing way of influencing nations and movements and institutions and churches and people’s hearts, especially your own.
If you want to pray for what the early church prayed for . . .
Pray that God would exalt his name in the world.
“Pray then like this: ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.’” (Matthew 6:9)
Pray that God would extend his kingdom in the world.
“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10)
Pray that the gospel would speed ahead and be honored.
Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you. (2 Thessalonians 3:1)
Pray for the fullness of the Holy Spirit.
“If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:13; cf. Ephesians 3:19)
Pray that God would vindicate his people in their cause.
“And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night?” (Luke 18:7 RSV)
Pray that God would save unbelievers.
Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. (Romans 10:1)
Pray that God would direct the use of the sword.
Take . . . the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. (Ephesians 6:17–18)
Pray for boldness in proclamation.
[Pray] at all times in the Spirit . . . and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel. (Ephesians 6:18–19)
“And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness.” (Acts 4:29)
Pray for signs and wonders.
“And now, Lord, . . . grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness . . . while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” (Acts 4:29–30)
Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit. (James 5:17–18)
Pray for the healing of wounded comrades.
Let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. (James 5:14–15)
Pray for the healing of unbelievers.
It happened that the father of Publius lay sick with fever and dysentery. And Paul visited him and prayed, and putting his hands on him healed him. (Acts 28:8)
Pray for the casting out of demons.
And he said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.” (Mark 9:29)
Pray for miraculous deliverances.
So Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church. . . . When he realized [he had been freed], he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose other name was Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying. (Acts 12:5, 12)
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake. (Acts 16:25–26)
Pray for the raising of the dead.
But Peter put them all outside, and knelt down and prayed; and turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up. (Acts 9:40)
Pray that God would supply his troops with necessities.
“Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11)
Pray for strategic wisdom.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (James 1:5)
Pray that God would establish leadership in the outposts.
And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed. (Acts 14:23)
Pray that God would send out reinforcements.
“Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” (Matthew 9:38)
While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off. (Acts 13:2–3)
Pray for the success of other missionaries.
I appeal to you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints. (Romans 15:30–31)
Pray for unity and harmony in the ranks.
“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:20–21)
Pray for the encouragement of togetherness.
We pray most earnestly night and day that we may see you face to face and supply what is lacking in your faith. (1 Thessalonians 3:10)
Pray for a mind of discernment.
And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ. (Philippians 1:9–10)
Pray for a knowledge of God’s will.
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding. (Colossians 1:9)
Pray to know God better.
[We have not ceased to pray for you to be] increasing in the knowledge of God. (Colossians 1:10; cf. Ephesians 1:17)
Pray for power to comprehend the love of Christ.
I bow my knees before the Father . . . [that you] may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge. (Ephesians 3:14, 18–19)
Pray for a deeper sense of assured hope.
I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers . . . that you may know what is the hope to which he has called ~John Piper.
Best Wisdom for Relationships!
I want you to think about your own relationships and look at them through three perspectives derived from biblical wisdom. These mentalities are essential in creating and sustaining a healthy relational lifestyle.
1) You must live in your relationships with a harvest mentality.
Paul captures this mentality with these very familiar words: “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap” (Galatians 6:7). This is an essential mentality if you want to live with habits of reconciliation. You have to buy into the principle of consequences. Here it is: there is an organic relationship between the seeds you plant and the fruit you harvest. In the physical world you will never plant peach pits and get apples. In the same way, there will be organic consistency between the seeds of words and actions that you plant in your relationships and the quality of harvest that you will experience later as you live and relate to one another.
Every day you harvest relational plants that have come from the seeds of words and actions that you previously planted. And every day you plant seeds of words and actions that you will later harvest. Most of the seeds you plant will be small, but one thousand small seeds that grow up into trees will result in an environment-changing forest. Your relationships are continuously planted with little-moment seeds of words and actions grow into the forest of either love or trouble.
2) You must live in your relationships with an investment mentality.
We are all treasure hunters. We all live to gain, maintain, keep, and enjoy things that are valuable to us. Our behavior in any given situation of life is our attempt to get what is valuable to us out of that situation. There are things in your life that you have assigned importance to, and once you have, you are no longer willing to live without them (these principles are laid out in Matthew 6:19–33). Everyone does it. We live to possess and experience the things upon which we have set our hearts. We are always living for some kind of treasure.
Every treasure you set your heart on and actively seek will give you some kind of return. An argumentative moment is an investment in the treasure of being right, and from it you will get some kind of relational return. If you aggressively argue the other person into a corner, it is not likely that the return on that investment will be his or her appreciation for you, nor will it be the desire to have similar conversations again. If you invest in the treasure of willing service, you will experience the return of appreciation, respect, and a deeper friendship. If it is more valuable to have control than it is for your friend or spouse to feel heard, loved and understood, then you will live with the return of that in the quality of your relationship.
Investment is inescapable; you do it everyday, and it's hard to get away from the return on the investments you have made. Ask yourself,
What are the things that are valuable to me right now, the things I work to experience everyday and am unwilling to live without?
How is the return on those investments shaping my relationships?
3) You must live in your relationships with a grace mentality.
When I got married, I didn’t understand grace. I had a principle-istic view of Scripture that caused me to bring a law economy into all of my relationships. The central focus of the Bible is not a set of practical principles for life. No, the central theme of the Bible is a person, Jesus Christ. If all you and I had needed was a knowledge and understanding of a certain set of God-revealed principles for living, Jesus would not have needed to come.
I think there are many Christians living in Christless relationships. Without knowing what they have done, they have constructed law-based rather than grace-based relationships. And because of this they're asking the law to do what only grace can accomplish.
The problem with this is that we are not just people in need of wisdom; we are also people in need of rescue—and the thing that we need to be rescued from is us. Our fundamental problem is not ignorance of what is right. Our problem is selfishness of heart that causes us to care more about what we want than about what we know is right. The laws, principles, and perspectives of Scripture provide the best standard ever towards which our relationships should strive. They can reveal our wrongs and failures, but they have no capacity whatsoever to deliver us from them. For that we need the daily grace that only Jesus can give us.
So, we must not simply hold one another to the high relational standards of God’s Word, but we must also daily offer the same grace that we have been given to one another so that we may be tools of grace in the lives of one another. Our confidence is not in the ability we have to keep God’s law but rather in the life-giving and heart-transforming grace of the one who has drawn us to himself and has the power to draw us to one another. When we live with this confidence, we look at the difficulties of our relationships not so much as hassles to be endured, but as opportunities to enter into an even deeper experience of the rescuing, transforming, forgiving, empowering grace of Jesus, the one who died for us and is always with us ~Desiring God